Race 1 America's
Race 1 Results
Course: 20 nautical miles to Windward and Return.
Course set at 180 degrees. BMW Oracle (starboard
tack), enters from right, Alinghi (port tack) enters
from the left
2:35 pm: Racing is
Penalty on Alinghi in the Pre-Start for trying to
cross BMW as they enter and not keeping clear.
Both above the line in a dial-up. BMW Oracle
stalled, both OCS, Alinghi gets out first before BMWO
even gets out of irons. Early jump to a 600m lead for
Alinghi as BMWO has to return.
Up the course, wind building to 8 kts. BMW gains on
Alinghi, cutting into lead, Alinghi swaps foresails,
BMW Oracle still gaining. USA pointing higher, going
faster, gets ahead into 250m lead. Now 400m lead. BMW
Oracle drops headsail. Out ahead to 425m. Then gaps
closes, both head right, but down to 160m lead. Speeds
about 20 knots upwind.
Halfway up the
Windward leg, BMW Oracle extends again 300m. 500m.
630m. Wind at 9 kts. Getting toward the layline.
Alinghi tacks first. BMWO about 2 minutes later.
Lead 900m to BMW Oracle. To 1200m. Nearing the Windward
Mark. Wind at top dropping from 10 kts to 7 kts, at 175
degrees. BMW Oracle tacks for the mark. Rounds at
BMW Oracle heads downwind. Alinghi rounds, 3:21 delta.
BMW Oracle leads by 1598m. 2100m. 2700m. Speed
downwind about 25 knots for BMWO.
Distance 3300m to BMW Oracle. Alinghi still
carrying a penalty. USA heading lower, speed to 28.5
knots. Wind 8 kts. More than halfway along the return
leg. Still huge lead to BMWO. Finish coming up. BMW
Oracle wins Race 1! Alinghi takes penalty turn,
Apparent finish delta of 10:04, problem with penalty
turn, has to return above the line, repeat penalty
turn, final delta 15:28.
Quotes of the Day:
Skipper, BMW Oracle: “I always thought if we were able
to fly a hull we'd be faster upwind, but I was
genuinely surprised downwind."
Dirk de Ridder,
Wingsail Trimmer, BMW Oracle: "Over probably 9-10 knot
breeze it’s more efficient without the headsail, and
the wing is working at maximum efficiency at that
windspeed, and there was no surprise we were better
upwind against Alinghi with the wing only....Once we
get to over over 10 knots we’re at our absolute best
and probably more wind we’d even be better. So good to
see in the lighter wind up the first beat we were
actually going quite well -- we were very very pleased"
Owner, BMW Oracle: "I would have sailed today if they
weren’t about to call a race in three-and-a-half knots.
If it’s very very light, we’ll sail with minimum crew
again. I had intended to sail today and I intend
to sail Sunday but not if the breeze is three knots of
Owner, Alinghi: "The wing seems to be quite a weapon."
Skipper, Alinghi: "What do you want me to say, they
sailed from behind us to in front of us."
Skipper, BMW Oracle, on the pre-start: "I was
approaching it pretty aggressively because the wind was
quite light -- we did a great job on the entry. We were
able to get a piece of ‘em and a force a penalty which
was good, but then pretty soon after -- we’re sort of
learning all the time -- we had a hard time sorta
stopping the boat. We ended up rolling forwards
and getting overlapped to windward....
"We sort of had a hard
time to try and stay out of irons. We got stuck in
irons. We had an issue with one of the winches,
we couldn’t get the sail on ‘em, and obviously we
couldn’t get the bow down. So it was a bit
frustrating, you know, as we really had him on the back
Question: As you came
across the line, how did you feel when you started
chasing Alinghi down?
Spithill: “Pretty fired up, we pushed the boat harder
than I’ve ever pushed it before –- I mean right on the
edge.....the boat really took off."
Read more quotes plus Race Summary Report
Race 1 Crew List
Race 1 Crew List
America's Cup Match
been 33 months of back and forth, asking a court to
decide who is the rightful challenger of record, what
boats may race, and where they can or can't race, and
every permutation of rule has been twisted and
examined. Sides have been chosen around the
America's Cup world, and this may be the least friendly
competition among nations for yachting's great prize to
ever slide down the ways.
Offset by race boats
that are as beautiful, high-tech and quite literally
lethal as any ever built, the sailing portion of the
match takes over today from the designing and building.
And nobody has ever built boats like these for inshore
racing. 79 miles of straight line racing, today's
20 nm to Windward and Return, plus Race Two's 39 miles
around the Triangular course, as the crow flies, and
some issues could finally be settled.
Not the least of these
issues is the Battle for the Soul of the America's Cup
that has raged increasingly hot since July, 2007.
The near future of the event, if not its entire future,
may ride on the outcome.
There are some who
think there is something wrong with a match between the
two most advanced sailboats on the planet, two yachts
indeed conjured into being just for these few races and
cast into shape according to a spell written in 1887 by
George Schuyler. The truth is that this is the
closest the Cup has come in some time to what it was
originally. This is not a pageant, this is not a
participation event to satisfy sponsors, it's not
intended to be done on the cheap or for the thrill of
competing, and there are no intentions of parity for
the sake of entertainment.
This is about
winning. It's about excellence and pushing the
limits to get there, and this is what made the
America's Cup big, brave, and famous in the first
place. It is serious, serious, sport. It's
taken imagination, some real guts, and cubic money to
get to this point, nearly unlimited except by
constraints of time. Win or Lose, this match
could well be the last time we ever see the America's
Cup unleashed to this degree. This is a match
race in the original sense, the boats at mythic
proportions, the competitors have real anger, the
stakes beyond mere pride. The America's Cup sails
into history today, and Cup fans everywhere should hope
it comes out a winner.