by Warren Douglas
Emirates Team New Zealand today won its second match of the Louis Vuitton Trophy Auckland round robin.
After trailing for more than half the race, Emirates Team New Zealand had got its bow in front and taken control of the match when the genoa clip on the Mascalzone Latino yacht broke, ending any chance of a win.
Sailing NZL84 on the second day of the regatta, Emirates Team New Zealand trailed Mascalzone Latino or the first beat, rounding the mark 22sec behind.
Dean Barker and his crew applied the pressure on run; reducing a four-boat length lead to less than two. At the leeward gate, Mascalzone took the left mark and Emirates Team New Zealand took the right.
With the delta down to 8sec and gaining the favoured right hand side of the course, the New Zealand crew set about taking the advantage.
It was painstaking work. The yachts converged for the first cross and Barker, coming from the right, had clearly made further gains. The Italians tacked away and when they came together again, Barker was in control and would have been able to force the Italians out to the left-hand layline.
Then the halyard clip broke on NZL92 and it was match over for the Italians.
Dean Barker: “We didn’t get a great start and gave them a bit more momentum off the line and also the favoured right side. We had a fair amount of work to do to minimize the damage...
‘Down the run we took advantage of a couple of mistakes they made and rounded the favoured end of the leeward gate at almost the same time as Mascalzone Latino rounded the other end.
“At the first cross on the second beat we got a nice lee-bow tack and took control. Then they had the gear breakage when the match was shaping up as a very, very close race.
“We’re pleased to get the point but we would rather not win through a breakage. Fortunately we were in control when it happened.”
Today, just as on the first day of the regatta, the breeze was reluctant to fill in and settle. The race yachts were held on the dock for an hour and the scheduled 10am start for the first match drifted past noon.
Today’s course, set for the south-westerly breeze, was in the inner harbour, with the weather mark well west of Orakei wharf and the yachts sailing close in to Devonport wharf and north head.
TEAMORIGIN beat ALL4ONE by 1min33sec
Emirates Team New Zealand beat Mascalzone Latino
Emirates Team New Zealand
Louis Vuitton Trophy