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#americascup – Emirates Team New Zealand's wire-to-wire win in Race 11 moved the challenger to match point in the 34th America's Cup against defender ORACLE TEAM USA.

About 38 minutes later, as the two crews were jockeying for position on the start line of Race 12, the race committee postponed the sequence because the wind strength had exceeded the prescribed 20-knot limit, forcing the Kiwis to wait until tomorrow for a chance to close out the series.

Emirates Team New Zealand leads ORACLE TEAM USA 8-1 on the scoreboard, with the winner the first to score 9 points. The Kiwis need just one more victory to win the America's Cup for the third time (1995, 2000), while ORACLE TEAM USA needs to win eight consecutive races to defend the trophy it won in 2010.

"It's not over; it's a long way from over," said ORACLE TEAM USA skipper Jimmy Spithill. "Both teams would've liked to sail the second race, but Iain (Murray, Regatta Director) has to stick by the limits that are set."

Race 11 didn't feature the breathtaking back-and-forth lead changes that were a hallmark of Sunday's Race 10, but it was every bit as exciting for the close-quarter action. Emirates Team New Zealand led at all four mark roundings – by 3, 6, 17 and 18 seconds – before settling for a 15-second victory.

Barker did a good job in the pre-start, setting up to leeward of ORACLE TEAM USA. Both crews were late to the start line, mainly because Barker was holding the match up, slowing the defender until he was ready to rip onto the racecourse.

The 3-nautical-mile upwind leg again proved pivotal to the match. The Kiwis began the leg with a 6-second advantage, but ORACLE TEAM USA once again attacked. The two crews traded 10 tacks on the leg, but the Kiwis fended off every advance with covering tactics and solid boatspeed.

On the run to the final turning mark ORACLE TEAM USA closed up to Emirates Team New Zealand's transom, but the Kiwis were able to sail a low course to round the mark, albeit at very slow speeds, while the defender had to put in two maneuvers to get around the mark. That gave the challenger enough breathing room on the final leg to the finish.

"Every win here is so hard, they're monumental battles, so you're thankful for every win you get," said Barker. "We had a bit of an idea how to attack it and it worked out as well as it could have. We had a nice little jump, sailed a good first run, at the bottom mark another split and backwards and forwards after that. We were happy to sneak away with another win."

Emirates Team New Zealand gets two chances tomorrow to close out the series. Race 12 is scheduled to start at 1:15 pm PT, followed by Race 13 (if necessary) at 2:15 pm PT. The wind is forecast to be similar to today, light to moderate for the first race and building for the second race. The lighter conditions seem to suit the Kiwis more than ORACLE TEAM USA.

"The boat seems to go well in a breeze, that's obvious," said Spithill. "But I think we can still win races in the light stuff. We're looking hard every night at what we can do. We'd love to get on with the racing, but we've got those wind limits and have to obey them. Whatever the conditions are we'll go into it 100 percent."

In the U.S., the America's Cup Finals will be broadcast live on the NBC Sports Network. Replays will be available on the America's Cup YouTube channel.

Internationally, the America's Cup Final can be viewed in more than 170 territories. All racing is also live on America's Cup YouTube channel (subject to territorial restrictions).

34th America's Cup Standings (first to 9 points wins)

Emirates Team New Zealand – 8
Race 11 Performance Data

Course: 5 Legs/10.16 nautical miles
Elapsed Time: ETNZ – 23:41, OTUSA – 23:56
Delta: ETNZ +:15
Total distance sailed: ETNZ – 11.7 NM, OTUSA – 11.5 NM
Average Speed: ETNZ – 29.88 knots (34 mph), OTUSA – 29.04 knots (33 mph)
Top Speed: ETNZ – 44.57 knots (51 mph), OTUSA – 42.70 knots (49 mph)
Windspeed: Average – 15.4 knots, Peak – 18.0 knots
Number of Tacks/Jibes: ETNZ – 10/6, OTUSA – 10/8
Upcoming America's Cup Schedule

Thursday, Sept. 19: Race 12 (1:15 pm PT), Race 13* (2:15 pm PT)
Friday, Sept. 20: Race 14* (1:15 pm PT), Race 15* (2:15 pm PT)
Saturday, Sept. 21: Race 16* (1:15 pm PT), Race 17* (2:15 pm PT)
Sunday, Sept. 22: Race 18* (1:15 pm PT), Race 19* (2:15 pm PT)
(*If necessary)

Published in America's Cup
Tagged under

#americascup – The wind won the day at San Francisco when Day 7 racing of 34th America's Cup was postponed until this morning. With an ebb tide of a strong 2.7 knots the wind limit at the start time was 20.3 knots.

The ebb tide flows against the wind direction and creates a challenging sea state for the AC72s.

The wind continued to build as it does at this time of the year in San Francisco and the race committee pulled the plug at 1.31pm when the wind strength was a consistent 25 knots.As the AC72 returned to base gusts of 32 knots were experienced.

On Wednesday wind conditions will start to moderate and so will the strangth of the tide.

Races 11 and 12 are rescheduled tfor today, at 1:15 pm and 2:15 pm San Francisco time.

Emirates Team New Zealand leads Oracle 7-1. The winner of the 34th America's Cup will be the first team to score nine points.

Published in America's Cup

In a shocking day for sailing and the America's Cup, Artemis Racing has confirmed the tragic death of crew member Andrew "Bart" Simpson during training in San Francisco yesterday.

Andrew Simpson (36), a British double Olympic medalist, was one of the 11-man crew aboard Artemis Racing's AC72 catamaran which capsized during training on San Francisco Bay ahead of this summer's America's Cup. All other crewmembers are accounted for.

Simpson, however, was trapped underneath the boat and despite attempts to revive him, by doctors afloat and subsequently ashore, his life was lost.

"The entire Artemis Racing team is devastated by what happened," said CEO Paul Cayard. "Our heartfelt condolences are with Andrew's wife and family."

He was sailing alongside childhood friend and Olympic sailing partner Iain Percy, the Artemis team's director and tactician. He had moved to San Francisco six weeks ago to take up the Cup challenge 

Simpson had won two Olympic medals, including a gold medal at the 2008 Beijing Games and silver in last year's Games in London, both in the Star keel boat class.

Simpson speaks to the press at the Sail for Gold Regatta last year, weeks before the Games

He was awarded an MBE in the 2009 New Year Honours list.

Born in Chertsey, Surrey, Simpson started sailing at the age of six with his father in Christchurch, Dorset.

Tributes have poured in from the world of sailing and beyond.

The Royal Yachting Association (RYA) and British Sailing Team said they were "devastated" by the news. expresses our deepest condolences to Simpson's family, friends and his teammates. 

Published in News Update
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