Day 2 racing blog

_B1_2265GMR17626_MR_8829GMR17586_B1_1558Race day 1 at 34th America's CupGMR_AC34sepD6_5587


UPDATE: 1456 hours

ORACLE TEAM USA won Race 4 of the 2013 America’s Cup Final in an amazing display of boathandling. With the wind blowing 22 knots and each team’s AC72 seemingly on the verge of control, ORACLE TEAM USA scored an 8-second victory.

Challenger Emirates Team New Zealand leads the series 3-0, however, due to a penalty imposed on the defender by the international jury. ORACLE TEAM USA won’t get a point on the scoreboard until its third victory.

Tomorrow is an off day for the America’s Cup before racing resumes on Tuesday with Race 5 and 6, scheduled to start at 1:15 pm PT and 2:15 pm PT.

Race 4 Performance Data

  • Course: 5 Legs/9.94 nautical miles

  • Elapsed Time: OTUSA – 22:42, ETNZ – 22:50

  • Delta: OTUSA +:08

  • Total distance sailed: OTUSA – 11.7 NM, ETNZ – 11.7 NM

  • Average Speed: OTUSA – 30.99 knots (36 mph), ETNZ – 30.92 knots (36 mph)

  • Top Speed: OTUSA – 45.97 knots (53 mph), ETNZ – 44.98 knots (52 mph)

  • Windspeed: Average – 19.5 knots, Peak – 23.3 knots


UPDATE: 1431 hours

ORACLE TEAM USA showed great speed on the upwind leg and leads by 16 seconds at the windward gate. The breeze is up to 22 knots and the crews are wrestling to keep their boats tamed.

UPDATE: 1420 hours

For the second consecutive race ORACLE TEAM USA leads at the leeward gate rounding, this time by 5 seconds. The Kiwis followed ORACLE TEAM USA in a starboard rounding, both boats heading towards shore on starboard tack.

UPDATE: 1416 hours

ORACLE TEAM USA again took the inside position off the start line to lead at the first reach mark by 6 seconds. The boats didn’t engage much in the 2-minute pre-start sequence, instead lining up superb time-on-distance runs to the start line.

UPDATE: 1348 hours

ORACLE TEAM USA held the early lead in Race 3 of the 2013 America’s Cup Final, leading around the first reach mark and even getting a penalty on Emirates Team New Zealand. ORACLE TEAM USA held an 17-second lead at the leeward gate, and then a furious battle ensued on the upwind leg.

ORACLE TEAM USA was covering closely but Emirates Team New Zealand got to the left of the course. After a physically exhausting tacking duel, Emirates Team New Zealand held right-of-way coming off the left hand course boundary on port tack. That forced ORACLE TEAM USA to tack to leeward. Once in control, Emirates Team New Zealand opened a lead that ORACLE TEAM USA couldn’t overcome.

Race 3 Performance Data

  • Course: 5 Legs/9.94 nautical miles

  • Elapsed Time: ETNZ – 25:00, OTUSA – 25:28

  • Delta: ETNZ +:28

  • Total distance sailed: ETNZ – 11.8 NM, OTUSA – 12.1 NM

  • Average Speed: ETNZ – 28.57 knots (33 mph), OTUSA – 28.62 knots (33 mph)

  • Top Speed: ETNZ – 42.25 knots (49 mph), OTUSA – 41.37 knots (48 mph)

  • Windspeed: Average – 16.8 knots, Peak – 19.3 knots


UPDATE: 1334 hours

Furious action on the upwind leg. Emirates Team New Zealand trailed through the leeward gate. A flurry of tacks saw the crews pinned on the left course boundary. Emirates Team New Zealand came off the boundary on port tack and because the crew was within three lengths had rights. That forced ORACLE TEAM USA to tack off of starboard and onto port to leeward of the Kiwis. Skipper Dean Barker and crew then covered ORACLE TEAM USA relentlessly to turn the 18-second deficit into a 29-second advantage.

UPDATE: 1321 hours

ORACLE TEAM USA sailed a blazing downwind leg and leads Emirates Team New Zealand by 18 seconds at the leeward gate. ORACLE TEAM USA took starboard through the gate and the Kiwis port, creating a split on the beginning of the windward leg.

UPDATE: 1317 hours

ORACLE TEAM USA held its leeward position on the first reach of the race to be overlapped at the first mark. Skipper Jimmy Spithill then luffed Emirates Team New Zealand and got a penalty on his rival, which was quickly exonerated by the Kiwis. New Zealand trailed by 7 seconds at the mark rounding.

UPDATE: 1300 hours

With 15 minutes to the start of Race 3 the wind is still up, averaging 18 knots and swinging through a 10-degree arc between 240 and 250 degrees. “With more wind the boats go faster and the risks are higher,” noted America’s Cup-winning tactician Brad Butterworth in the pre-race television show.

UPDATE: 1245 hours

With 30 minutes to the start of Race 3, the wind is blowing 15-18 knots from 240-250 degrees.

UPDATE: 1200 hours

The first wind reports from the racecourse indicate a strength of 16 knots from 235 degrees; a similar strength yet farther left than yesterday. Race 3 is scheduled to start at 1315.

UPDATE: 1125 hours

Early morning fog shrouded San Francisco Bay this morning, but shouldn’t hinder the development of the seabreeze for the second day of the 34th America’s Cup. Regatta Director Iain Murray is optimistic the breeze will fill in.

“The tide is flooding, so we have wind limits of 24.4 knots for the first race and 23.4 knots for the second,” said Murray. “We’re looking for the conditions to be similar to yesterday, maybe not getting quite as windy in the afternoon, but very similar to yesterday. Probably around 14 knots in the first race, and a bit more in the second.”

ORACLE TEAM USA has port tack in the pre-start in the first race and Emirates Team New Zealand port in the second. Yesterday we saw Kiwi skipper Dean Barker set up for a windward start in both races. With a stronger flood tide than yesterday, the windward position might be more advantageous today.

“The flood tide pushes the boats away from the windward end of the line, so it’s hard for the leeward boat to make the windward boat run out of time because they’re getting pushed away from line,” said Murray. “We saw Team New Zealand twice come off the windward end and use that advantage, so we might see a differ change of starting tactics.”

Today’s races are scheduled to start at 1315 and 1415. The winner of the 34th America’s Cup will be the first to win 9 points. Don’t think of it as a best-of-17 series, the winner is the first to win 9 points. For the Kiwis that means nine race wins and for ORACLE TEAM USA it means 11, due to the penalty imposed by the International Jury.

In the U.S., the America’s Cup Finals will be broadcast live on NBC and NBC Sports Network. Replays will be available on the America’s Cup YouTube channel. Saturday’s and Sunday’s racing will be broadcast live nationally on NBC, from 1:00 to 3:00 pm PT.

Internationally, the America’s Cup Final can be viewed in more than 170 territories. All racing is also live on America’s Cup YouTube channel (subject to territorial restrictions).

You can also follow racing with America’s Cup App for android and iOS devices.

ORACLE TEAM USA Crew List
Skipper: Jimmy Spithill (9), Tactician: John Kostecki (11), Strategist: Tom Slingsby (10), Wing trimmer: Kyle Langford (8), Jib trimmer: Joe Newton (5), Off-side trimmer: Rome Kirby (4), Grinders: Shannon Falcone (1), Joe Spooner (2), Jono MacBeth (3), Gillo Nobili (6), Simeon Tienpont (7)

Emirates Team New Zealand Crew List
Skipper/helmsman: Dean Barker (14), Tactician: Ray Davies (10), Wing Trimmer: Glenn Ashby (3), Trimmer: James Dagg (9), Bow: Adam Beashel (2), Pit: Jeremy Lomas (8), Pedestal 1: Chris Ward (7), Pedestal 2: Rob Waddell (11), Pedestal 3: Race 3 – Grant Dalton (6), Race 4 – Winston MacFarlane (4), Pedestal 4: Chris McAsey (5), Float/Grinder: Derek Saward (12)

Today in America’s Cup history
September 9, 1885, saw the second attempt at Race 1 of the 5th Match for the America’s Cup between Genesta (GBR) and Puritan (USA). A famous and rare incidence of America’s Cup sportsmanship occurred when the owner of Genesta, Sir Richard Sutton refused to accept the award of a race after Puritan struck Genesta during the pre-start. “We want a race; we don’t want a walkover,” was Sutton’s famous reply. Sutton went on to lose the series, 2-0. He did not return to England empty handed as Genesta went on to win the Brenton Reef Cup and the Cape May Challenge Cup, proving Genesta was a better ocean racer than a harbor racer.

America’s Cup Park
10:00 am – America’s Cup Park opens, free access to public
11:00 am – AC72s on moorings
11:00 am – America’s Cup Trophy on display, Big A, Main entrance until 12:00
11:15 am – Marching band starts up at America’s Cup Park
11:45 am – Dock-Out Show, Presentation Stage
12:00 pm – America’s Cup Pavilion open for race viewing
12:45 pm – Pre-Race Show with Andy Green and Tucker Thompson
1:00 pm – “America’s Cup Race Show” includes live commentary from 1:15pm, until 3:00
1:00 pm – America’s Cup Trophy on display, Flying on Water until 2:00
1:15 pm – America’s Cup Final 3: ORACLE Team USA vs. Emirates Team New Zealand
2:00 pm – Arr Hour: MOA Bar Drinks Specials – Beer Garden until 6:30
2:15 pm – America’s Cup Final 4: ORACLE Team USA vs. Emirates Team New Zealand
3:00 pm – Post Race Q&A with Andy Green and Tucker Thompson
3:15 pm – Poster Signing with team representatives from ORACLE Team USA, until 3:45
3:45 pm – Maori music and performance from New Zealand, Presentation Stage
3:30 pm – Live Music: Nexus Rock. Sounds of San Francisco presented by Dockers. Free Admission, until 5:30
4:00 pm – Poster signing with team representatives from Emirates Team New Zealand, until 4:30
4:00 pm – Race Replay: America’s Cup Final Race 3 & 4, North Point & Plaza
7:00 pm – America’s Cup Park closes

America’s Cup Village
11:00 am – America’s Cup Village opens, free access to public
11:00 am – Live Racing – AC Open: Moth Racing (10 boats) with live commentary by Bob Billingham & Annie Gardner
11:45 am – Dock-Out Show live from America’s Cup Park (Pier 27/29) - on the big screens
12:45 pm – Pre-Race Show live from the America’s Cup Park - on the main stage big screen
1:15 pm – America’s Cup Final 3: ORACLE Team USA vs. Emirates Team New Zealand
1:45 pm – Halftime Show shown on the America’s Cup Village big screens
2:15 pm – America’s Cup Final 4: ORACLE Team USA vs. Emirates Team New Zealand
2:50 pm – Post Race Show - on the main stage big screen
3:00 pm – Post Race Q&A live from the America’s Cup Park - on the main stage big screen
4:00 pm – Race Replay: America’s Cup Final Race 3 & 4 - shown on the main stage big screen
4:20 pm – Live Racing - AC Open: 18’ Skiffs Mark Foy Trophy Race 4, until 4:50
5:00 pm – America’s Cup Village closes

ORIGINAL POST: 0700 hours

Sailors for both ORACLE TEAM USA and Emirates Team New Zealand professed after yesterday’s racing that there was no difference in the performance between the team’s two AC72s. Yet, skipper Dean Barker and the Kiwis hold a 2-0 lead after winning the two races by 36 and 52 seconds.

With all the talk of evenness aside, there were two characteristics shown yesterday to watch for today: Jimmy Spithill’s aggression in the pre-start, or any close-quarter encounter, and Emirates Team New Zealand’s acceleration.

ORACLE TEAM USA’s Spithill aggressively tried to get a penalty on the Kiwis in both pre-starts. He had a case for a windward-leeward penalty in Race 2, but the umpires green-flagged it. To the umps’ credit, they’ve been green flagging incidents like that throughout the America’s Cup World Series and Louis Vuitton Cup, so Spithill shouldn’t be too surprised by the call.

As for the acceleration, Spithill noted twice how the Kiwis were able to get up to speed faster: approaching the first reach mark of Race 1 and off the start line in Race 2.

If the two AC72s are truly even speed-wise, it’s those types of instances that might swing the series one way or the other.

Races 3 and 4 are scheduled to start at 1315 and 1415, respectively. ORACLE TEAM USA will have port tack into the pre-start for Race 3 and Emirates Team New Zealand has it in Race 4.