Kiwis beat British to reach America's Cup challenger finals

  • Kiwis beat British to reach America's Cup challenger finals

Kiwis beat British to reach America's Cup challenger finals

Today is nearly exactly three years since the British team officially launched their long-term challenge to bring the Cup home to British waters for the first time since the inuagural event in 1851 - 166 years ago - when it was held off the Isle of Wight.

Artemis skipper Nathan Outteridge goes overboard, handing Team NZ a 2-1 lead in the America's Cup challenger series final.

Artemis is trying to bounce back from the tragic death of British Olympic star Andrew "Bart" Simpson when its 72-foot catamaran broke apart while training on San Francisco Bay in 2013. "The boys really dug deep".

Emirates Team New Zealand moved a step closer to an America's Cup rematch with Oracle Team USA on Thursday as they ended the quest of Ben Ainslie's Land Rover BAR.

The Challenger final victor progress to the America's Cup decider against defending champions Team USA, who have another Novocastrian, wing trimmer Kyle Langford, on board. "We knew we had the power and had to keep chipping away, we saw the opportunity and stole the victory", Outteridge said in televised comments on BT Sport.

Burling said the team were still assessing the damage - and the precise cause of the mishap. Iain Percy [team manager and tactician] had a few words to the team and just reminded us to trust our gut, and to sail the boat to our capabilities.

Outteridge had outsmarted his long-standing rival Peter Burling at the start and the crew of six elite sailors managed to fend off New Zealand's repeated attempts to pass them.

If Oracle Team USA or Artemis Racing win, a framework has been agreed among five of the teams for taking it through to the next event, once again in the high-octane foiling catamarans which have proved popular with sailors and broadcasters.

"It's two big, well-supported teams going head to head", he said.

The three men grew up sailing on Lake Macquarie and are now battling it out for a place in the Challenger final against New Zealand, who knocked out Great Britain on Friday.

He said if he had not slipped they would have won the race and be in the lead.

"It's the first time it's happened to myself or to probably many people in these boats and I don't think it will be the last, either", Outteridge said.

The mishap occurred during the days third and final match with Artemis barely ahead of the charging Kiwis by four metres as the teams closed in on the weather mark. Three races will be scheduled in each of two brackets in this best-of-nine knockout round.

SoftBank Team Japan hit something shortly after leaving its base for the race course.

"Already the work is starting on the next campaign. and we will be that much stronger next time", he vowed.

This was another painful loss for Barker. After the Kiwis reached match point, Oracle won eight straight races to retain the oldest trophy in worldwide sports.

Earlier in the day Team New Zealand won the first race on their smaller foils - a surprise in the lighter conditions.