May 18, 2012

AC45s @Venice: Oracle Team on their Performance

I like their press releases, always quite honest and direct to the point. Bundy led two races with a clear position, the first one lost yesterday on jib furling handling errors and some hardware failures, and today also a clear start showing he is still the fastest , but the short course and the change of crews were key to end 8? again.
Press Release.--Team Oracle. Spithill captured third in today’s second fleet race at ACWS – Venice and now stands sixth on the leaderboard after the first four races.

Teammate Oracle Team Usa Bundock holds eighth in the standings at the regatta that has seen the team’s two crews off to an uneven performance.

“Both our boats are struggling at the moment,” said boat No. 5 skipper Darren Bundock. “We have done a lot of crew changes, trying to change things around and move some of the guys who'll be on the AC72 involved in some of the World Series racing. We're obviously paying for that at the moment.”

Racing today was on the San Marco racecourse, inside the lagoon between the island of Lido, the basin San Marco and Punta della Dogana with the finish line placed off St Mark’s Square. The boundaries were so tight that crews were tacking or jibing every 30 to 90 seconds it seemed at times.

“It was an inconsistent day for us and we had some poor starts,” conceded John Kostecki, tactician on ORACLE TEAM USA SPITHILL. “The Grand Canal race was tight. It felt like a race and work out all at the same time.”

Yet the tight racecourse also provided some thrilling racing. In the second race, aerial views showed the two ORACLE TEAM USA AC45s trading jibes and weaving between the two Luna Rossa yachts.

The water-borne ballet approaching the leeward mark suddenly became crowded when Energy Team and Emirates Team New Zealand charged up from behind in a fresh puff of wind and disrupted the elegant symmetry of the top four.

The crews performed countless maneuvers today as they tried to stay off the boundaries. Race 2 was so physical that Luna Rossa Piranha crewman David Carr was physically sick afterwards.

“Boundaries, boundaries, boundaries. It was a tough day,” said Bundock. “Lots of tacks, lots of jibes, getting bounced around a lot – it was a really tight course. You couldn't really stretch your legs at all. You couldn't get away from other boats and when you were in the middle of pack, you just got bounced around. We had chance in one race, had a great start, but just munched downwind and ended up going the bottom mark just about last.”

Racing continues tomorrow with two more fleet races and the semifinal round of the match racing championship.

Crew Lists
ORACLE TEAM USA SPITHILL – Jimmy Spithill (skipper/helmsman) John Kostecki (tactician), Kyle Langford (wingsail trimmer), Joe Newton (headsail trimmer), Brad Webb (bowman)
ORACLE TEAM USA BUNDOCK – Darren Bundock (skipper/helmsman), Russell Coutts (tactician), Dirk de Ridder (wingsail trimmer), Simon Daubney (headsail trimmer), Simeon Tienpont (bowman)

For more information visit the new ORACLE TEAM USA             

All photos ©Guilain Grenier/ORACLE TEAM USA

America’s Cup World Series – Venice Fleet Racing Standings Day 2
Team (Country) R1-R2-R3-R4 – Total
1. Energy Team (FRA) 3-1-3-2 – 35 points
2. Luna Rossa Swordfish 4-2-1-6 – 31
3. Luna Rossa Piranha 5-5-4-1 – 29
4. Emirates Team New Zealand (NZL) 6-3-2-4 – 29
5. Team Korea (KOR) 1-6-6-5 – 26
7. Artemis Racing (SWE) 2-7-7-7 – 21
9. China Team (CHN) 9-9-9-9 – 8
(Scoring: 1st place = 10 points, 2nd = 9, 3rd = 8, 4th = 7, 5th = 6, 6th = 5, 7th = 4, 8th = 3, 9th = 2)

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