Peter Burling, helmsman for Emirates Team New Zealand, left, shakes hands with skipper and helmsman Jimmy Spithill for Oracle Team USA, right, in front of the America’s Cup trophy, known as the “Auld Mug”, before a news confere.
Jimmy Spithill’s Oracle team now face an uphill battle to win the competition, where the trophy is earned by the team that wins seven races.
“We will try but I think we will have less chance to achieve that”, Cammas said.
“Our team is really hungry to keep moving forward and keep improving, we have another five days to keep working on the boat and go over all the footage”.
Spithill is no stranger to adversity as he and his team made one of the biggest-ever comebacks in sporting history when they rallied from 8-1 down against New Zealand to win the “Auld Mug” in San Francisco in 2013 when the victor was the first to nine.
“It’s not over yet, we’ve got five days and they’re five very important days”.
It’s a spectacle that would be unrecognizable to America’s Cup sailors of even two decades ago – and other-worldly to those of 1851, when a syndicate of NY businessmen sailed the schooner America across the Atlantic and humbled the best of the British fleet in a race around the Isle of Wight in what marked the birth of the America’s Cup. “But we also made a lot of mistakes”.
Clearly we need to now put everything back on the table.
Bertrand believes Burling is tough because of his dominance in winning the Olympic gold medal in the 49er class at Rio de Janeiro last summer with Blair Tuke, a Team New Zealand grinder.
The 26-year-old Burling is an America’s Cup rookie.
Spithill, an Australian, is trying to win his third straight Americas Cup before he turns 38.
But AUT professor Mark Orams told Larry Williams they won’t be able to reinvent the wheel before the next race on Saturday. The Kiwi catamaran rose onto its hydrofoils and sped off across the turquoise waters of the Great Sound.
Spithill thinks the splashdown was caused by a problem with one of the rudders.
“We worked had to get this, all the way through the Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series in 2015 and 2016 and then in the Qualifiers a couple of weeks ago”. We were far from our best today.
However, there was to be no late drama, as Burling’s team crossed the finish line 30 seconds ahead of Spithill’s ORACLE TEAM USA, wiping out the minus one point deficit to the Defenders and levelling the overall scores to 0-0 ahead of race two.
Race 4 was to follow.
At the start of race two Spithill might have sniffed an opportunity when a mistake on a gybe had the Kiwi boat floundering with the Americans poised to attack.
“Their acceleration was pretty impressive on the line”.
The kiwi on a bike is a reference to Team New Zealand’s innovative grinding system in which it has replaced traditional coffee-grinder winches with stationary bikes to tap the grinders’ leg power instead of arm power.