Highlights as the America's Cup builds to its climax. The 162-year-old sailing event boasts the oldest trophy in international sport.
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It has all come down to this, just one more race win for Emirates team
New Zealand and they will be crowned America's Cup champion's. Up against
them, Jimmy Spithill and the Oracle team, USA, desperately defending the
cup they won for America three years ago.
After years of development and a $100 million investment, they must
keep winning, or their campaign will be over.
There's no doubt these space-age AC 72s and this 34th America's Cup have
taken sailing to another level. San Francisco's streets are
beginning to echo to the sound of the New Zealand beat. After rugby's
World Cup, this is the next big thing for fans with a Kiwi
connection. It is a want to be their moment, as Dean Barker aims to bring
the cup home. Will today be the final dock-out show for the crew. It
the cup home. Will today be the has come down to one win and it is
all about the start. Today is a tough ask for us. We have two
entries. It is easier to get at least an even start, so we've got to
work hard to get a good start. As you say, the boats are very even
in performance. If we get behind it will be very hard to get back into
the race. We have to fight very hard to try and win a race today. At this
level, a bad start means playing catch-up.
Uniquely, in sailing, most of the work is done in the two minutes
before the race starts. The boats are separated, almost like boxers -
confined to their corner of the ring.
With two minutes and ten seconds left, the boat on the left, in
sailing terms the yacht with port entry is allowed into the pre-start
area. That boat crosses an imaginary line. There is an extension of the
start line and it is then in play. The starboard entry boat, on the
right, can enter ten seconds later, with two minutes to go. As soon as
it crosses along the green line, it is game-on and the fun begins. The
reason for the 10-second gap, is to avoid both crews hurtling in at top
speeds at the same time. The next two minutes the boats dual to
position n a way that will block the other crew. Trying to apply a
knockout blow before they even cross the start line. Port entry is
favoured by the teams because the boat on the left should have the
advantage getting to the mark. In this example, the wind is come from
the right. The blue boat, the port entry boat has the benefit of clean
air. So, that is the science. Let's get back out there.
In amongst all the confusion and postponed races and weather delays t
stats are beginning to favour Team USA. There is a new confidence about
Spithill spitted and his crew. Together, with -- Jimmy Spithill and
his crew. Together, the arrival of Ben Ainslie has been their saviour.
It is a huge task, but it is a challenge they enjoy. The boys are
fine. They have been in tough situations before. Mounted
comebacks. To be in this position, they'll want to prove everyone wrong
and get the result. Let's hope there's racing today. Hope
commentary team - over to them. Oracle scam team USA have -- Team
USA have done ten runs here. This is a team I don't think wants to go
home now. Can Jimmy Spithill put it together? Hey, this will be great
fun to watch! . Let's look at the course and tide conditions with Ken.
The ebb is starting. It will increase as the day goes along. You
see the bigger arrows on the left-hand side, along the shore
front, that is where the ebb starts first. That is going upwind, towards
the left side, towards the shore front. Good for all the people out
there watching the race. Then, of course the racecourse itself, this
is the new-style racecourse for the America's Cup w the reaching start
to mark one. Todd, you can obviously make a strong case that the first
person to mark one wins the race with the boats so even in speed
right now. Up and down one-and-a-half times and the quick
reach into the finish, we could see history off America's Cup today.
So, with 241 to go until the start of the race, we check in on the
water for the conditions. The wind has really changed here. Just in the
last three or four minutes it is blowing in hard. I expect the chop
to get pretty nasty out here. Both boats have bigger jibs than they had
up yesterday. Shifting gears and being able to handle heavy winds
will be a tough one. The wind is peaking, closer to 17 knots. Wind
limit should not be a problem in this first race. In San Francisco it
always builds in the afternoon. Here comes the Americans into the start
box as they have port entry. . It will be interesting to see if
they take this port entry and go down into the box. Team New ze land
is on their tail, not making it easy for Oracle, that is for sure!
It gives them the chance to take the start line, that we have seen to be
so valuable. This is a big switch up to what we have seen in the last few
days. Both boats are very close to the line. They'll have to kill a lot
of speed here. They were so close coming together, that typically
means that the breeze has gone to the left, that it is a left-shift
coming off the shore. Do you see that? I do, I think Jimmy will try
and get underneath now with them so close.
Todd, they are really far down in the box. They are down near that
yellow line, that is the layline to the mark. It is hard to hook when
you are that far down the line. Let's see if team New Zealand can
hold them up. Both boats at risk of being over. Spithill gets the hook.
Just as I said it would be hard for him to do, dominant hook. They will
come at them and starboard again. Jimmy Spithill nails it.
We are racing day number nine. Race 12 is off.
The mistake by New Zealand was too close to the line, too early. They
had that chance to take the left side of the starting line early on
in the sequence. It didn't work. They were too early like Gary said.
Oracle pounced. It is the Americans with the lead,
here in San Francisco. The lead is just five seconds. Now,
the Americans have been the faster boat on the downwind leg, now the
big question is - can they build on this? Breeze off the shoreline.
Let's see if the breeze has shifted to come off the city front, off the
shoreside here. Let's see if they can milk this! A long way. That
benefits the boat out front. I notice New Zealand going up and
down on its hull more than the American boat. An indication that
maybe Dean Barker is having a little trouble steering.
Let's go back to the start quickly, as they make their first gybe here.
Was this Dean Barker being too aggressive? Did Jimmy Spithill make
the most of it? At two minutes, they came together and they were so
close, this all of a sudden gave Dean Barker a lot more options. We
have seen the boat from the starboard tack side, than from the
past. Did he change his strategy? Absolutely, as he should. It should
be an advantage at this stage. The problem was they got too close. Team
New Zealand get a proper hook and the rest is history. Here it is on
virtual line. The Americans getting the port entry. They come in fast.
Look how close that cross was! There was a close cross. All of a sudden
they decide to take the lead back. Jimmy Spithill does a nice job of
being patient here. I was worried they would be too low on the
layline. He knows more than I do about how these multi-hulls work and
got a nice hook and forced the issue right away. He also was very patient
there. He could have gone with Team New Zealand. That makes him
vulnerable, as the rules go. He stayed, waited and took off at the
right time. This is a textbook - what we call a hook move.
Race 12, as we check in on the water with Gary Jobson. New Zealand,
behind, going down wind. The speed is not very much difference. We will
look at a split at the lower gate. Pressure should be OK here. Slightly
faster, slightly higher. That is the job of the strategist,
Tom Slingsby, just calling the other boat. Actually, what you have
noticed, they are calling their own boat. It is very typical of the
strategists. They refer to only their boat. We are higher, slower,
we are faster. But really good communication.
Certainly no sense of panic on the American boat, that is for sure.
So, the Kiwis are determined to gybe to set themselves up for mark number
two. This could be the sign of who goes which way. The Americans would
love to get a split. Can you and Gary, both pointed out, the left
side of the course, going up wind will be the fastest. There are big
current lines out there. The big, big current line - this is a tough
spot if you are ahead. You have to try and plan out. You have to have
well ahead of time your strategy of where you want to be. You can see
Oracle wants to be heading out into where you want to be. You can see
the middle. They will do one more gybe and in, is my guess.
So this will create the split that Gary was references, with Oracle
heading offshore and Team New Zealand inshore. Not much in it.
At mark number tworks it is the Americans first there. They head
outside so, they will head into deeper waters. That leaves the
option open for the Kiwis at mark two.
And they will split the course. Gary, I am kind of surprised that
Oracle choose to go offshore here. I was surprised how late they were at
the hook in the mark at that start. What do I know? You would think the
ebb is actually increasing along the shore front quicker than it is
offshore right now. I am surprised they choose this route. You know a
lot. Don't underestimate your knowledge here! I am surprised too.
Why open the door. We know the ebb will be better along the shore and
the water will be a little bit less choppy. The waves will be pretty
nasty where Oracle are now. So an early tact for Oracle - their
lead was 11 seconds after mark number two. They led by five at mark
number one. A win is really, right up along the
shoreline, along the city front. Oracle are in a high-speed right
now. You sail in a high or low mood. There's the -- mode. There's the
current. I am surprised Oracle choose to go offshore first. Here is
the first big cross. Let's see how they go. Perfect tact for New
Zealand. If they were five lengths further, the wind would have gone
way down. So, Ken, is this a case of the Kiwis
on a conveyer belt when you talk of the current going upwind? That is
exactly where they are. We will find out how much of a conveyer belt. I
think they have closed up. It is not a dip, not as close up as we have
seen in the past. They are certainly a lot closer. I would think that
would be a better current the whole time.
Oracle can take advantage of the current. They too can continue get
too close. The Americans have led the entire
race. The Americans now in a favourable position. As Gary pointed
out, light wind on the left side of the track. They were going 31 knots
of wind. Who would ever have thought these boats could have gone 30 knots
of wind! It is remarkable. They were 39th downwind to. Give you
an idea of how much gain there has been and the speed of these boats.
Nice little extension by Oracle here.
A good opportunity for Oracle to attack on New Zealand's breeze. They
don't seem to be taking it. It is a little too close, to throw two tacts
in that close to the shoreline, I think it would be a tough spot for
any catamaran. That is impressive there.
Upwind was kind of like - people have said they have seen it, but
no-one was sure and now, in fact, it is a common sight.
Here is the cross on leg number three.
So the Americans have the lead. Can they hold on to it?
Still hovering around 100 metres. Both boats heading upwind here on
leg three of five. The Americans must win this race, or the America's
Cup goes to Emirates Team New Zealand.
Just coming coming in now. The boths, really the first time in
similar currents side by side. What can you tell us about the current
status. I am looking at the boats coming up to the city front. Right
now, you twoont be close to the city. That current is sweeping out
to the Golden Gate. That is why it is so close now.
A huge moment heert in San Francisco, on the cross, of leg
number three, the Americans with the slight advantage over Emirates Team
New Zealand, in a must-win situation. As always, the Kiwis will
never go away. Their tenacity is incredible. I am
surprised that Oracle forced them back into the left so early on those
surprised that Oracle forced them last two tacks. It pushed them in
the right place. You love it when your competitor pushes you to the
right spot! 17 knots going through a tack - that
is impressive. It is on the left side of the
screen. Got a shot of Ben Ainslie, the
four-time Olympic medallist playing tactician for Oracle Team USA.
Going really well. Fully foiling upwind.
You'll see Oracle tack on Team New Zealand and keep the left side of
the racecourse. I think New Zealand should tack a
lot sooner to get back to the left. I think New Zealand should tack a
Keep going guys! Nice mode there! Make sure you have the pressure.
Constant chatter on Oracle. Team New Zealand drifting back just a bit as
the lead has gone out to 150 metres. A minute-and-a-half ago it was
within 30 metres. I think Oracle has a nice mode. They keep talking about
their mode, as do we. I think they have found a really nice mode in
this ebb current, that they can go super fast in. Seems to be
performing very well today. The wind is getting a little lighter
as they approach the mark. A good play for Ben Ainslie here, forcing
your competitor in the direction you think is wrong - tactically force
them out into less current. You take the side you think has more current.
And possibly a better wind shift. You have a good look at them
grinding away. There's the goal on this beat - the
Americans, the lead 128 metres and growing.
Now Oracle is trying to set up team New Zealand for that one final kill.
That one that will force them to do one more manoeuvre than they have to
do as they come into this weather mark, or force them to overstand the
mark. Either way, the boat ahead, they have a big opportunity to gain
here. Here we go - they'll do two. My guess Team New Zealand, Oracle
will only do one. Good call. Ben Ainslie says let's go
to the layline, we don't want extra tacks, let New Zealand make them.
And as the Americans hit the layline, the lead is up to 150
And as the Americans hit the metres on leg number three.
Something interesting between Ben Ainslie and what John Kostecki was
doing. He brings himself into the middle of the boat a lot, where
Kostecki was always grind from the high side, doing tactics from there.
It has to be difficult to see your opposition on the other side of the
wing. So the strategy pays off for the
Americans. They forced the Kiwis into an extra tack, as the Americans
hit gate number three first. It is very small lead and it looks like
Jimmy Spithill will opt for the deeper waters as he rounds gate
number three. The Kiwis in the opposite direction - again they have
split the course. The Americans lead still over 100
metres over the Kiwis. So Gary, you would have to consider
mark three a huge success, strategically for the Americans. Ten
seconds does not sound a lot, but that is eight boat lengths. We are
next to Oracle, USA right now. They went through a perfect jive and
another gain. -- gybe and another gain. So the
Americans go in the normal moid. Mode. The sense you get is you do
not want to give the Americans any more momentum than they already
have. That is exactly right! Dean Barker knows in that pre-race
interview, he says, these guys are dangerous, we don't want to let them
off the mat, so to speak and sure enough, they give them a chance
right now. Leg four of five. This is race
number 12. Day number nine, for the 34th America's Cup. The Americans
firmly are in control of this one and they have to be. If they lose
another race, the America's Cup leaves their hands and goes back to
New Zealand. So the Americans sailing two knots
faster downwind. They have the lead, they look very smooth. People
watching at home may say they were less than 100 metres when they
approached gate number three. When you round the weather mark, that
weather gate, you automatically accelerate. You start going about 10
knots faster than the other boat going upwind. You automatically
knots faster than the other boat create a jump from going downwind
compared to upwind. They got this first shift correct. There is some
luck involved in that. At the same time, you make your own luck. They
got into the first shift and maybe tripled their lead. You are on the
water - what did the Americans do so right and where did the Kiwis miss
out? We saw the wind getting lighter up to that gate. New Zealand rounded
the left gate, went along the shore. That is where they lost the
distance. They did haven't the wind to give them the speed.
To be honest, they didn't have a choice either. The lead boat
dictates what the boat behind is going to do going into those
situations. The I can wis took the hand they -- the Kiwis took the hand
they were given and it didn't work. Emirates Team New Zealand, Grant
Dalton, as a grinder. It is well over 400 metres away, what we like
to refer to as "the bat mobile." Having Grant Dalton on the boat has
been very important. He needs to stay on board to settle this team
down for the second race this afternoon.
For the longest time, we have said the Kiwis are the fastest boat here
at this 34th America's Cup. At the moment the Americans are clear
clearly the faster boat. Remember, compared to most boats we sail,
these guys actually sail into the front of them. Where the breeze is
coming from, it is right in front of them. That is how fast they go. That
is how much apparent wind they create. You can sail into a puff and
extend and sail away, there's nothing the boat behind can do about
it. You cannot help by think, this has
been a long few weeks, a long couple of years. These guys have been
been a long few weeks, a long couple nonstop now, for days and days in a
row. Comugs has to happen at some --
exhaustion has to happen at some stage. The Americans head for home.
And unlike yesterday, mark number four, not that close, as the Kiwis
make the turn, they are down by 29 seconds, as the Americans head for
home and this victory will go the way of Oracle Team USA. And they did
exactly what they had to do. As you pointed out, they had to get the
start - that was mission number one. They must have read our pre-raised
script. Really, give these guys credit. The pressure is all over
them and they have performed under the heat that the world's sailing
community is just heaping on these guys. Really well done by Oracle
Team USA in this rass! -- race! The Americans will come to
Team USA in this rass! the line and they will extend this
series. Oracle Team USA gets the race win in race 12.
No major celebrations on board. That is just one down. They need seven
more wins to keep the cup. For the Kiwis, Dean Barker, you can always
imagine what he'll say, it is one race. Regroup, get over it -
imagine what he'll say, it is one there is one thing with these Kiwis,
their in incredible composure and demeanour just solid. These guys
will be totally sorted out and ready to go for this next race. Now the
biggest question is, what will Mother Nature do? Knowing San
biggest question is, what will Francisco and how the wind builds in
the afternoon, everyone will start to look at the numbers.
But the most important number is the Americans pick up win number four of
this regatta and they keep the Kiwis from getting number nine and game
set match. There we go. A cheer for the boys
from the boss. Straight back to doing business. The
boys are really focussed today. They are accepting the challenge. We are
straight on to the next one. That is how we'll treat it, one after the
other. Is there more pressure or less pressure? You can make a case,
the mountain seems so high at this stage, there's less pressure,
nothing to lose as you go out there. In some ways there is. We love a
challenge and we will certainly -- and we certainly got what we
challenge and we will certainly -- for here. The boys this morning,
there was almost excitement - they really embraced it and sailed a
fantastic race. We have to focus. One at a time, did a little thing
right and keep chipping away. Grant Dalton sums up the race and the plan
going forward. We were a lot faster yesterday. We have sort of gone back
to the configuration today, targeting the first race now. We
know n the breeze, as we targeted yesterday morning's race, breeze up
a bit now. Starboard advantage now as the ebb is starting to run. Makes
it real hard N the race they got blown off yesterday, we had a
blinder. A bit unfortunate really. But, yeah, a more normal
configuration now. Yesterday was different. Grant, can you speak of
the pressure you and the boys are feeling knowing that the entire
nation of New Zealand is glued to their screens now, expecting you to
bring home the cup. We know there is a nation watching us. Once you go
into the start box, you don't really think of that any more. You just do
your job as best you can. So, with the first chance gone, will it be
lucky 13 for Dean Barker and his crew? Will the American's great form
continue? They have won three #0u9 of the last five races.
With a strengthening wind, the time slot for race 13 was passing.
And those blue arrows that are supper imposed on your screen tell
the tale. That is the ebb tide. That coupled with the wind has triggered
the clock get again. The clock has been pushed back to 15 minutes
again. Just like yesterday and several other days we are in a
wind-limit hold at the moment. We keep talking about this upper
limit, wind limit here, particularly with the ebb. Is there any chance
that the teams, you and the coastguard could agree to raise it?
I think it is a bit late in the competition for that, Gary. This is
something agreed quite some time ago. It was heavily scrutinised and
you know, the change halfway through the competition is unlikely.
But anything is possible. You know, this is the America's Cup. You know,
I think right now we are dealing the worst of it. It gets a whole lot
better from here. I'm not short changing it, would achieve much any
way. It gets better because of the current? We start with the flooding
tides and you know, we have been caught by the last of the ebb here
this afternoon. There's no late day scheduled at all. We race every day
until this regatta concludes? Keep going now. Does it put pressure on
you? Look, I think it is frustrating for all of us. We see it here, the
ebb is really starting to run. Of course we measure it 15 minutes into
the race. But, of course, the breeze is building. These guys having great
skills to sail these boats T rules are the rules. It is what we have
agreed to. We have to play by the rules. With minutes to spare, the
wind dropped and the start sequence kicked in.
So the jackets are off. It looks like we will in fact go sailing
here. Race number two on the bay of day nine. Jimmy Spithill and company
look determined. I always found it was really hard
when you were in the middle of postponements like that it was hard
to keep mentally and fiscally prepared. These guys being having
their jackets on, doing their time runs, it is professional. Getting
themselves back into race mode. Oracle Team USA. They get the
advantage. What can they do with it? Oracle Team USA. They get the
Will Mother Nature co-operate? Todd, it is interesting, you heard
Dean Barker say he's the wing, the wing, the wing. They are quite late
into the start box because they actually lost control of their boat
for just a second. It was too close to the wind. Maybe they aren't quite
as prepared as we thought they were for this start.
So, the dance begins. 90 second away from the start of race number 13.
Keep your fingers and toes crossed. Still has to go over that.
Sorry guys, over the wind limit. I had a bad feeling about this! It
looked like the breeze was on a little bit more out there.
I am looking at 30 second average now. Itted had just -- it had just
popped over - literally three seconds. That will takeaway our
second race of the day y again. No panic the Kiwi camp. They have a
six-race lead. Momentum with Team USA. The gamesmanship continues. We
actually sent a letter to the Kiwis, saying, listen, we would accept
raising the wind limits for at least the fact that if you start a race,
you've got to finish it. They cannot blow it off. I think that would be
better for the sport, better for people watching, but it takes them
to agree to it. You know, if, at the moment, there is wind limit, this is
likely to happen again. It doesn't seem right to change any rules
halfway through a series. When you start that series, it is how it
should be. We have seated our boat up knowing what the wind limbs can
be. Yes, we can win seven more races. When we started this regatta,
I think Dean and his guys had a significant edge up wind through a
lot of hard work and engineering and the boat builder builders, we have
been able to improve the performance of our boat, to the point now where
been able to improve the performance we think we are very competitive
around the race track. Certainly the guys sailing the boat would believe
we can win it now. We believe we have a great boat. We have improved
it. We have not finished yet. We are still, tonight we'll make some more
changes and that's the name of if game is you have to keep developing
your boat the whole through. So we are in a different situation now,
where we are clearly confident of our boat and we believe we can do
it. And you know, we've almost got nothing to lose. We will go out
there and win races. We have said from the start, we don't believe
this is over until we win one more race. It's a better one. You have of
the -- it's a battle. You have to fight for every point. We are very
aware that we've got to race well to fight for every point. We are very
win races. Nothing has changed since we started this series. We'll go out
there again tomorrow. We have a huge amount of confidence in the way we
sail the boat. We know that if we sail as well as we should, then
we'll win a race. The Americans are clearly in tune
with the ever-changing weather conditions. New Zealand have
with the ever-changing weather match points. The hacker is on stand
by. The mobile phones are on charge, with fans eager to celebrate the
America's Cup. We will bring you every tack and
gybe of this over the weekend.
Highlights as the America's Cup builds to its climax. The 162-year-old sailing event - which boasts the oldest trophy in international sport - is being staged entirely within the confines of San Francisco Bay for the first time in its history.