AmericaOne New Zealand Chronicles:
Best Foot Forward
About The Challenge
Daily Report - January 13, 2000-
Fans of AmericaOne,
Having already qualified for the Louis Vuitton finals yesterday, the question on whether we would compete today was frequently asked. There were many reasons not to sail, the most important was not to damage USA 61. But in fairness to Stars & Stripes, Prada, and especially to Louis Vuitton, everyone on the crew thought sailing today was the right thing to do. At no point were we going to go out on the water and not put our best foot forward. Paul even sent a letter this morning to Stars & Stripes and Prada stating that we would be sailing our hardest.
The last two races we have sailed have been the most exciting to date. We expected no less today from Stars & Stripes. If they win out, they are at least guaranteed a sail off against Prada for the right to sail against us in the Louis Vuitton Finals.
Conditions today were similar to yesterday, steep chop, with 12-20 knots of breeze backing from 65 on the compass. Our game plan at the start was to get the left. Approaching the starting line we were to leeward and Stars & Stripes was to windward. We were late to the line, this gave Stars & Stripes the early advantage. In the position we were in, Stars & Stripes probably would have run us out to the port layline. We tacked while Stars & Stripes was patient and waited for the left shift. At the first mark they were 35 seconds ahead. We closed on the first run and the second weather leg to the point that we were only a boat length behind. At the last leeward mark rounding we were right on their transom. Being this close forced us to tack to port, this again gave Stars & Stripes the favored left side of the race course. The third weather mark rounding we were 25 seconds behind. Both boats set gennakers and got into a jibing dual towards the finish line. We were close, but in the end Stars & Stripes prevailed.
Hats off to Stars & Stripes, they had to win and they did. They sailed a perfect race. For us, we sailed our butts of this round. The results speak for themselves. A piece of humble pie today might not have been the worst thing for us. It will only strengthen our desire to beat either Prada or Stars & Stripes in the Louis Vuitton Finals.
AmericaOne Sailing Team
AmericaOne is one of the leading challengers for America's Cup 2000. The team is currently competing in Auckland, New Zealand for the Louis Vuitton Cup and the right to challenge New Zealand for the America's Cup in February 2000. AmericaOne has built two boats based on 4 years of technology development and innovation. The top level technology partners are Hewlett-Packard Company, Telcordia Technologies/SAIC, Ford Motor Company/Visteon and United Technologies Corp. AmericaOne represents San Francisco's St. Francis Yacht Club. To learn more about AmericaOne visit: www.americaone.org.
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