10 years better
After 3 days of racing, the International America's Cup Class fleet found its start groove and spectators were treated to a fantastic visual as the five yachts jostled for position on the line to cross almost simultaneously and heading out on starboard tack to the first mark under the north end of the Golden Gate Bridge.
ORACLE BMW Racing split off on port immediately, leaving the vintage fleet in the dust for the remainder of the race, emphasizing the impact of ten years of yacht design and technology advances.
It was a treat to see the older boats in full fleet race mode with a stiff 25+ knots beating up the city front, with the likes of Charlie McKee and Stu Bannantyne, Illbruck Challenge veteran, assisting Karie Thomson behind the helm of NZL-20, former Team New Zealand tactician Hamish Pepper lending a hand to skipper Mary Coleman on NZL-14, Dawn Riley helping on the bow of USA-11 helmed by John Sweeney, and Dee Smith, the aggressor, pushing the limit on ITA-1 with skipper Peter Stoneberg.
Chris Dickson’s presence on board USA-76, helmed by Larry Ellison, filled out the compliment of great sailors out on San Francisco Bay today, a reunion of some of the top yachtsmen and yachtswomen that the America’s Cup has spawned.
Regardless of the age of IACC boats, it remains a thrill to see them fleet race in the fabulous conditions offered up by San Francisco Bay. Even Hamish Pepper had join in the laugh after he voiced concern that it was risky business sailing the older boats, after all, they could easily break...just like new ones...
Results - Times Corrected
Start 1307 hours
(hours, minutes, seconds)
1st USA-76 (01:35:20) Helm – Larry Ellison
2nd NZL-14 (02:12:50) Helm – Mary Coleman
3rd NZL-20 (02:14:14) Helm – Karie & David Thomson
4th ITA-1 (02:44:21) Helm – Peter Stoneberg
5th USA-11 (02:49:56) Helm – John Sweeney
1st ORACLE BMW Racing