The black boat from Sweden experiences the highs and lows of America's Cup racing.
There may have been twelve boats on the race course today for day two of Act 5. There may have been some dramatic moments at key moments in both races, but the team that is the talk of the town in Valencia is the Swedish Victory team who now, for the second day running, lead the overall points.
Scoring two impressive results today against the big boys, their performance is all the more impressive given that the toy box has been closed since early 2003 when they packed up after the last America’s Cup in Auckland. Last year the team wasn’t formed, there were no funds in place and therefore they didn’t participate in any of the Acts or even sail. Indeed, they only got back out on the water two weeks before the start of Act 4, just a few days ago. But since then, the Swedes have impressed everyone.
Today, their greatest moment was winning the second race of the day after the tightest first leg scraps we’ve seen in America’s Cup fleeting racing. (Dean Barker on Emirates Team New Zealand nearly came a cropper coming in on the port lay with a long line of boats on starboard and had to take a penalty.) But the Swedes Kept their cool, rounded first and spent the next hour extending their lead.
But not everything has been going their way today. In fact, as the sun started to set across the Darsena harbour, things were going rather pear shaped for the current leaders.
Convinced they were 6th in the first race of the day, the Swedes were surprised to see that the race committee had them down as 7th in a photo finish behind Luna Rossa. So convinced that they protested the race committee.
Half an hour after that news had broken, more news came through that their boat had failed post race measurement check leaving the race committee no option but to protest them.
Winning is clearly important for any team but for the Swedes, the prospect of wrapping up Act 5 with a historic win before the teams pack up for the next regatta in Malmo (Sweden) is almost too tasty a proposition to contemplate.
More news when we get it, but in the meantime, tomorrow is the last day of racing with everything to play for. Especially for the new men in black
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