Jun 11, 2017

America's Cup 2017 @Bermuda, LV Final: Match Point , TNZ 4 vs Artemis 2

All images ACEA / Ricardo Pinto & Gilles Martin Raget - TNZ Day review sent by Emirates Team New Zealand, their report here - Press conference by Americas Cup YT Channel.
On the official tracking app by Acea, I received some comments that it stopped working for a while today. Gladly Espn is broadcasting here and I also use  Mike Drummond custom Tactical App. -
Official Americas Cup web www.americascup.com -

Starting Sunday's first race Artemis was trailing down 2-1 from yesterday where Outteridge went overboard after the last tack upwind. Time to see again how he and the team would react, and like the Semis vs JPN Nathan & Artemis responded full bore.

R1- First race about 16knots, Artemis with the fast smaller area foil setup, New Zealand speculated with a unstable climate and went for their big dihedral daggers.
Outteridge won the start and Artemis led the entire race with better speed over TNZ, for moments they were clearly  faster (max speed 45knt vs 41knts).
It was another perfect race with a moment of  high distress when Artemis failed a tack and literally lost control with their AC50 going high on foils, losing rudder grip and heading direct hit course to TNZ, Outteridge managed to regain track and got separation again for a solid win on tactics and handling, a key one , coming from behind in points.

Outteridge showed he has the needed guts to play in the AC and tied the LV  Final 2-2. on Artemis aggressiveness and attitude, now more speed was added to their formula, and it looked they were ready for more.

It was a turning moment, as now we could expect Burling & NZ to react if they pretended to face Oracle for the Cup Finals.

R2 -  Second race wind dropped around to 11knots average at the start, fluctuating up to 14, Nathan won the start once more and led the first gate.
Buling went for a split and along Ahsby and the cyclors slowly built upwind speed.

On the second crossing Burling got close pushing Nathan from leeward and while throwing the bow to Artemis Burling left hand pressed the penalty request button, but Nathan reacted and tack clear.
From then on New Zealand gained a lead of 13secs at windward mark.
Nothing to do for Artemis added to some hydraulics issues.

Burling reacted back in this race and also showed he has AC dna in his veins. Wind helped too as the Tractor switched to Turbo mode in this race with less wind.
Upwind speed was 26,59 for TNZ vs 24,17 SWE, average race speed 29.49knts vs 26.76knts

R3- Third and last race of the day we saw Nathan winning the start once more, 6-0 by now, Artemis first to the gate , TNZ following SWE to the left mark , once to windward Burling tacks earlier while SWE continues not covering immediately.

With clear air , Burling and Ashby let the upwind Nitro out , several crossings and TNZ cutting distance. Artemis reaches first to the gate , Burling goes for a new split.

Separation means gain for TNZ and on the first downwind crossing, they are already ahead.
Two secs only for second downwind gate,
Time for the upwind Kiwi Train.

Burling controls, all set, at least it seems so....
Last downwind TNZ missed the layline and forced course for last gate, a floating gybe in slow motion with Artemis coming full speed behind.
Burling reacts but looks too late, Nathan points to the finish ,  TNZ  coming from below.

All set for a photo finish, adrenaline pumping in both teams , finally TNZ saves the race and the day by 1 sec. Cannot get a closer Finish.

Watching the race again, seems that Burling thought the race ended at the gate, look again and check how he relaxs, and only reacts when Nathan keeps going to the -actual- Finish.

What's left
The Day goes to TNZ 2-1 for a 4-2 overall, match Point for Emirates Team New Zeland.. Their lighter wind selection payed finally in the last two races when wind dropped. In 16knots Artemis was faster all round.

New Zealand in the midrange 11-14 knots of wind  is almost untouchable upwind.
Artemis gave a great fight and were near to get  2-1 themselves in the last race on TNZ error, but performance wise once the wind dropped to 12knots average from those 16knt in the first race, the Kiwi Tractor has a 6th gear to windward.
Tomorrow 3 more races scheduled, hope to see a full 9 races Final.

Outteridge & Burling
Little early as not finished yet, but Outteridge today got his America's Cup helmsman degree, to the point where many of us thought after the first race, better he win this Final to face Oracle cause Burling is taking some time to react.

In the end Burling and TNZ  reacted  back from 0-1 to win the day and put their team match point for tomorrow.

But the lack of start aggressiveness (Nathan won the 6 starts tilll now) might be a problem if they end facing oracle int he AC Finals.
Spithill will eat breakfast in each start. With Japan as benchmark, and now Artemis vs TNZ , there is no doubt Oracle has a fast AC50 as we wrote many times, I dare to say as fast or faster than the Kiwis one.

Burling and Ashby Silver bullet will surely continue to be their coordination, combined experience and TNZ AC50 upwind turbo mode.

Artemis had some chances, they raced good today, maybe some tactical error not covering TNZ in few occasions.  When wind dropped they needed more speed upwind to broad their alternatives.

Oracle & Spithill Benchmark
Still not finished, but clear chances are TNZ will win tomorrow.
If so starting the Americas Cup Final 0-1 already on Qualifiers win lame point gained by Oracle (an agreed format by the challengers minus TNZ)  vs Spithill can become a tough challenge to bare for New Zealand.

This as we would like New Zealand or Artemis to grab the Cup, but we have the higher respect for Oracle , Spithill, Slingby and the rest of the team. Thus our concerns on time running out to see a rock solid challenger facing them with some degree of  possibilities to win the AC Final.

I really hope Emirates Team New Zealand is warming up only and for them to have a flawless performance in the final Match, for all us  to witness the most Epic AC Final ever.

This Cup Edition by the way, is providing Outstanding close competition which is great Fun to watch & follow.  ---------