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New Zealand wins 5th straight vs Oracle in America's Cup

New Zealand wins 5th straight vs Oracle in America's Cup”

And when the salt spray had settled, Emirates Team New Zealand, by virtue of a victory in the day's first of two races, maintained a 4-1 lead over the American boat in the 35th edition of the America's Cup.

Jimmy Spithill made history as Oracle Team USA gave themselves hope by getting up and running in the America's Cup to trail Emirates Team New Zealand 4-1.

But Spithill's been here before.

While they focus on another comeback, New Zealand is keen to reproduce the outcome of 1995, when Russell Coutts skippered Black Magic to a five-race sweep of Dennis Conner's Young America in San Diego. The changes have worked on one level, with the Oracle boat showing more pace around the race course. "We feel like these guys have been given a few soft penalties".

"I find it a bit amusing when people say we had days off last week".

There were lead changes in both races Saturday, as well as mistakes.

Although the New Zealand team got away, the champions recovered well and fought their way back into the race, finding the speed which had evaded them in previous encounters.

Despite the Kiwis' dominant win, Team U.S.A. looked faster than it had when it was humbled in four races last weekend.

"I don't have the fears that suddenly we'll go to New Zealand ...and it'll take the Cup back to the Dark Ages", a tanned and bearded Ainslie said.

"We've been there before". Campbell, an Olympian, joined the team after watching them win in San Francisco. That was the key thing. While their boat was clearly faster, unforced errors by the team continue to hold them back. If we think the team has a better chance with me off the wheel - no problem.

Spithill is prepared to relinquish the captaincy if required, admitting to several mistakes during the finals races. He said it was a great opportunity for the shore team to work on its boat.

After a five-day break, the showdown between 50-foot foiling catamarans resumes with two races Saturday, if there's enough wind, and two Sunday.

This would please many sponsors, but not everyone liked the idea with some saying it was not true to the spirit of the cup and New Zealand boycotted the agreement.

"We always knew it would be hard if these guys sail well and we're excited about the battle ahead".

"You're from New Zealand did you say", Spithill fired back, prompting laughter from the reporters at the press conference. "But we're really happy with the lead we've got". "We're going to come out and get stronger". At the first cross on the upwind, Spithill had extended enough to cross ahead of the Kiwi boat.

However, ORACLE TEAM USA's new-found speed paid dividends on leg 5/7 as they cut the gap to their rivals and engaged in close-quarter racing. When the boats crossed again, New Zealand was slightly ahead and on favored starboard tack.



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