Emirates Team New Zealand 2-1 up on Day 1

Paola Ditto
Giugno 19, 2017

Some of the crews competing in Bermuda for the "Auld Mug" have a greater Olympic concentration than others and Groupama Team France, with only one on board, was eliminated in the Louis Vuitton America's Cup qualifiers.

New Zealand are now one step closer to a rematch with Oracle Team USA - who rallied from 8-1 down to beat the Kiwis in the 34th America's Cup four years ago. "It'll be a real battle, but we're really looking forward to it".

Artemis is trying to bounce back from the tragic death of British Olympic star Andrew "Bart" Simpson when its 72-foot catamaran broke apart while training on San Francisco Bay in 2013.

“We had our heads down making sure we were getting everything out of our boat we could to make sure we got past and then realised they had slowed down, and didnt really realise why until we sailed past them about a minute or so later.”.

It's been a dramatic week in the America's Cup challenger eliminations on Bermuda's Great Sound, and the main event is still a week away. Thankfully, the six-man New Zealand crew were all quickly accounted for.

The last encounter of the day between the Swedish and Japanese teams was decided by a penalty call near the end of race, when Japan's skipper Dean Barker was judged not to have given Nathan Outteridge enough room around a mark.

The British boat trails New Zealand 3-1 in the best-of-nine series but they have the chance to draw level should they win both of Thursday's races.

In the first race, Artemis had the lead but Outteridge crossed the boundary for an unforced error and had to slow to two boat lengths behind the Kiwis.

"I didn't actually see the capsize itself", Ainslie said. "Ultimately we weren't able to catch up with the existing teams in time".

Racing in the America's Cup semi-finals was postponed by the organisers on Wednesday due to winds above the maximum allowed for a race to take place in the competition.

"I think he was a bit upset with what happened to be honest", Paul Goodison, a member of the Artemis Racing team, said on BT Sport television after the race, adding that the crew had won three starts and were confident of beating New Zealand. Burling sailed ahead to a 47-second victory.

Emirates Team New Zealand successfully harnessed the power of rower Rob Waddell, who won gold in the single sculls in Sydney in 2000, as a grinder.

The sailors are OK other than some scratches and bruises, the team said.

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