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Steinlager Line 7 Cup: AmericaOne Goes To The Lead With Kiwi Dean Barker

Contenders from five current America's Cup teams, plus three other past Cup skippers are racing in Auckland, NZ, this week in the Steinlager Line 7 Cup match racing series. The ten-boat fleet comprises the strongest field of Cup players yet to be seen in the city where the Cup will be defended in a few short months. AmericaOne's Paul Cayard reports on the latest sailing action from the Auckland waterfront:

Sailing News: March 24, 1999

Day one of the Steinlager Line 7 Match Racing Regatta was very good for AmericaOne. We had 6 wins and 1 loss for a tie for the lead with Dean Barker of New Zealand.

The day featured moderate winds, 9-13 knots from the north. The current in the harbor runs east or west so the racing was cross-current which made it tricky for laylines to the start and the turning marks. In our one loss, to Gavin Brady, we fought hard for the left end of the line, got it, but had to follow him into the top mark. We passed him on the run in a series of reaching contests, gybing back and forth, and then got pinged for a foul near the leeward mark. It was a good call.

We led the rest of the race but could not get enough lead to work off the penalty.

In our other races we beat Magnus Holmberg of Sweden, Francesco de Angelis of Italy, John Cutler of America True, Ed Baird of New York, Chris Law of England, and Dean Salthouse of New Zealand.

Tomorrow we will start with Chris Dickson and Dean Barker to finish the first round robin. This first part of the regatta is a double round robin to select the four semi-finalists for Saturday.

A good start but a lot of racing to go. We need to take 'em one at a time.

Paul Cayard

For more about this major match race series go to the Steinlager Line Seven Cup official web site. Also visit the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron site. For more in this series of reports, look at AmericaOne's Grand Prix Sailing News page.


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