INDEPENDENT NEWS

Americas Cup Challenger Morning Race Report

Published: Wed 20 Oct 1999 06:59 PM
Morning Americas Cup Report - Young Australia Takes First Win; French Collide
All Eyes on the Yachts During Race: 5
James Spithill sailed Young Australia 2000 to its first win of the series, while France’s Le defi started the day with a collision.
Spithill's win against FAST 2000 was the closest of the morning - crossing the line just 12 seconds ahead of his Swiss counterparts. The French had a less auspicious day after hitting a press boat during pre-start manouvres....
Prada Challenge and Young America continued to keep a clean scoreline, notching up their fifth wins, while AmericaOne's bye this morning keeps it in third place on four wins, and no losses.
After a short delay on both courses, the breeze settled in from the north at five knots, moving to the right and building progressively to 14-16 knots. Blue skies were covered over by clouds from an approaching front. Cool and exciting conditions on the course.
Luna Rossa Beat Bravo Espana - Delta 01:02
RR1 - Race 5 Prada Challenge vs Spanish Challenge
Bravo Espana (ESP-47) won the favoured end of the start line and both boats sailed out to the right side of the course, with Luna Rossa (ITA-45) to windward. The Italians gained on a windshift, and pressed their advantage up to the top mark.
An intense tacking duel to the layline allowed the Italians to sit on Spain as they approached the mark, and de Angelis built on his lead. Bravo Espana looked to be the faster boat downwind, but Luna Rossa was never seriously threatened.
Some spinnaker problems on the Italian boat on the final hoist allowed Spain back into the match, but Italy pressed on to win by 1:02.
Stars & Stripes Beat Asura – Delta 01:14
RR1 - Race 5:
Some tight circling and then Stars & Stripes (USA-55) started at the committee end, while Asura (JPN-44) started at the pin. Advantage Dennis Conner, one second.
Conner continued on starboard. Gilmour followed but was eventually forced away. When they crossed again, Conner on port tack cleared Gilmour’s bow by about 20 feet.
Breeze was five knots at 015 degrees at the start but went right and built to 15-knots. Conner established comfortable margin and protected his lead, when Asura, only one second behind at the leeward mark was penalised.
Young America Beat 6e Sens – Delta 02:04
Young America (USA-53) raced with precision to totally dominate this race. However, the die was cast in the pre-start maneuvering when 6e Sens (FRA-46) was forced out above the committee by Young America with 30 seconds to go before the gun.
Le defi tacked through the wind alongside the Committee Boat and skipper Bertrand Pace spun the boat like a top as he desperately tried to get back into the box and follow Young America across the line.
Le defi hit a photographers boat in the process. Advantage Young America at the start was 57 seconds A commanding lead had been established by Young America and she was never put under pressure.
America True Beat Abracadabra 2000 – Delta 00:26
In an exiting and close race America True (USA-51) beat Abracadabra 2000 (USA-54). The start of the race was dead even.
Although the boats were evenly matched, the Hawaiian Team (delta 32 seconds) won the first upwind leg. On the run Kolius and his tactician Chris Larson did not cover when Cutler gybed.
The boat of the San Francisco Yacht Club passed on the inside. From that moment on America True dominated this very close match race. At the bottom mark, the delta was only seven seconds in favour of America True.
With a fake tack Aloha forced America True to the right. A tacking duel with more than 15 tacks followed with America True successfully defending the favoured right side.
Young Australia 2000 Beat Be Happy – Delta 00:12
RR1 - Young Australia
Following a short delay due to low wind, YA2K (AUS-29) and be hAPpy (SUI-59) got off to an exciting race. During the pre-start YA2K out-manoeuvred the Swiss to gain a 29-second lead.
YA2K expanded that lead to 1.13 seconds upwind. While the Swiss proved faster downwind, the Aussies played a smart leeward leg to stay ahead. More of the same followed on the next two legs with the Aussies re-establishing a firm lead of 1.19 seconds upwind and losing distance to the Swiss downwind.
A gybing duel near the finish nearly cost Young Australia 2000 its first victory of the series, but the Aussies covered the Swiss to finish 12 seconds ahead.

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