INDEPENDENT NEWS

Alinghi Claims Another Win Against Prada

Published: Sun 6 Oct 2002 09:37 PM
Alinghi Claims Another Win Against Prada
ROUND ROBIN 1- RD4 - Alinghi defeated the Prada Challenge in ideal wind conditions for Race 4 of the Louis Vuitton Cup.
AUCKLAND - October 6, 2002 - A southerly breeze of 16-18 knots finally established itself, after light easterly zephyr kept the race on hold for nearly four hours.
The breeze filled in, sending white caps skidding across the Hauraki Gulf for a 16:05 local time start on Course Romeo.
Prada's one-second lead off the start line was short-lived. Alinghi quickly emerged the stronger boat with Russell Coutts taking the controlling windward position on starboard tack as both boats headed towards the left side of the course.
The Swiss boat built a comfortable lead of 21 seconds at the first windward mark. Prada lost ground on all the legs, but skipper Francesco De Angelis, winner of the 2000 Louis Vuitton Cup, fought hard to catch the disappearing transom of the Swiss yacht.
Onboard Alinghi, the crew work was seamless. The communication amongst the sailors was exemplary, helped by the onboard microphones provided by their official supplier "Phonak," which operated flawlessly.
On the third and final downwind run, Prada made up 14 seconds, but not enough to close the gap on Alinghi's 1 minute, 32 second lead at the finish.

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