Thursday, February 08, 2007

BMW Oracle's USA-61 in Valencia

USA-61, BMW Oracle's exhibition boat, is now in front of the team's base in Port America's Cup and will stay there till the end of the America's Cup next July. She arrived earlier this week and it will certainly be an excellent opportunity for the general public to see and touch a true sailing racing machine.

USA-61 almost won the Louis Vuitton Cup in 2000. It was the finalist against Prada's ITA-45 that lost 5-4 in what many consider the best series of matches in the history of the America's Cup, probably the most memorable Louis Vuitton Cup final. Paul Cayard was at the helm of the American boat and Francesco de Angelis skippered the Italian boat.

USA-61 in front of the BMW Oracle base. Valencia, 8 February 2007. Photo copyright Pierre Orphanidis / Valencia Sailing

After trailing 3 to 1, AmericaOne staged a fantastic comeback with three consecutive victories, only to be blown away by the Italians in the last two races. This cliffhanger is very well reflected in the results of the races:

Race 1: Prada Challenge def. AmericaOne by 24 seconds
Race 2: AmericaOne def. Prada by 1 minute, 33 seconds
Race 3: Prada def. AmericaOne (withdrew)
Race 4: Prada def. AmericaOne by 2 minutes, 32 seconds
Race 5: AmericaOne def. Prada by 34 seconds
Race 6: AmericaOne def. Prada by 9 seconds
Race 7: AmericaOne def. Prada by 1 minute, 6 seconds
Race 8: Prada def. AmericaOne by 37 seconds
Race 9: Prada def. AmericaOne by 49 seconds (Prada wins series 5-4)

Well, the former helmsman of this boat will be back in America's Cup action early next week, when he arrives in Valencia and settles in the green base for two months, just across the basin. We are of course talking of Paul Cayard, Desafío Español's recently-hired consultant, who starting next week will try to pass some of his wisdom to the Spanish challenger.

USA-61 in front of the BMW Oracle base. Valencia, 8 February 2007. Photo copyright Pierre Orphanidis / Valencia Sailing

Labels: ,

2 Comments:

At 12:58 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

wonderful memory ITA 45

 
At 2:49 PM, Anonymous JeffO said...

Dennis Conners victory in Australia introduced me to AC racing and the battle between USA 61 and ITA 45 hooked me on AC for life. Great race!

 

Post a Comment

<< Home