Looking good

September 11th, 2013 at 9:07 am by David Farrar

Stuff reports:

Team New Zealand’s mastery upwind played a huge role again today as they crushed Oracle in the fifth race of the America’s Cup final to take a commanding 4-1 lead.

Dean Barker’s crew thrashed the defenders by 1m 5s in another come-from-behind victory.

The win leaves New Zealand needing five wins to claim the Cup while Oracle still have to claim 10 to hold on to the Auld Mug.

Team NZ is looking good to win, but however Oracle were leading this race until they made an error. It’s great the races so far have actually been exciting.

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52 Responses to “Looking good”

  1. Dave Stringer (182 comments) says:

    OTUSA were so shocked by the loss they were scared to race again today.
    If they have a mechanical failure now they have to concede any race(s) scheduled while they do repairs as they only have 1 “get out of racing free” card each.

    So David, add “scardy cats” to the dirty cheaters tag :-)

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  2. David in Chch (503 comments) says:

    And remember that it is NOT 4 to 1; it is 4 to -1 still. The OTUSA have to win one more race just to reach zero, because of the two penalty points they were given. It annoys me that commentators don’t seem to know basic arithmetic.

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  3. Dean Papa (623 comments) says:

    Indeed. Racing a boat that is demonstrably slower than your opponents is clearly a significant tactical error. I wonder how much cash Larry has blown on this little escapade? I suspect we will not hearing from him again after this embarrassing defeat, at least as far as Americas cups are concerned.

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  4. davidp (3,326 comments) says:

    NZ won in 1995 under a National government. We lost in 2003 under a Labour government. Now we’re doing well again under a National government. Coincidence? I would say yes, except we’ve recently won the Rugby World Cup under National, and our last win was in the era of Rogernomics that Labour now hate. Is it possible that Labour’s policies of dragging the successful down and rewarding mediocrity reflect themselves on the sporting field?

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  5. WineOh (430 comments) says:

    We are looking dominant up-wind, but a bit of a worry that we can’t seem to win the jockeying at the start line. Or perhaps thats a deliberate tactic to rely on the speed on leg 3?

    Also, I don’t recall hearing it in the commentary, the crew members that were banned from Oracle for 4 races should be back in the fold now, will that make any difference on the boats?

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  6. davidp (3,326 comments) says:

    WineOh>but a bit of a worry that we can’t seem to win the jockeying at the start line

    Are they worried that a desperate Oracle may try and engineer a crash? They’re staying quite clear of them.

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  7. Dave Stringer (182 comments) says:

    WineOh
    Only 1 of the two is allowed back, and he is not part of the sailing crew, so I doubt that will make a difference.

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  8. alex Masterley (1,439 comments) says:

    As I understand it one bloke in Oracle was stood down for 4 races. He is a sailing team member so can go back on the boat.
    Oracle seem to have good speed downwind so from my perspective ETNZ need to stay clean at the start and downwind and then let their upwind power do the real damage. although in race 4 that did not work.

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  9. Keeping Stock (9,791 comments) says:

    Two victories for ETNZ today; one on the water, and one inside the heads of the Team Oracle people. Playing their wild card so early in the piece is a very risky strategy, given that from this point that they will have to sail on the absolute edge, making gear failures or crew mistakes more likely.

    And DavidP is right on the money; a collision would not be any great surprise now as Team Oracle will have to throw everything at ETNZ.

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  10. wreck1080 (3,527 comments) says:

    I think Dean Barker could be doing far better on the starts though.

    He loses just about every start — maybe NZ won 1 of the starts.

    Fortunately, we have a faster boat which makes up for the awful starts.

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  11. davidp (3,326 comments) says:

    So what happens if, say, Oracle luff really hard at the first mark, the boats collide, and NZ suffers significant hull damage and loses the mast? It is likely that NZ would take the penalty and lose the race. Do the teams then have to compete in their second boats? NZ’s is only a gen 1, I think. What about Oracle? Is borrowing Prada’s boat an option for the Kiwis… and could you sort this all out in two days?

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  12. stigie (645 comments) says:

    So what happens if, say, Oracle luff really hard at the first mark, the boats collide, and NZ suffers significant hull damage and loses the mast?

    The first rule is to avoid damage when luffing, just like Spittle did in race 3 i think. A big risk for both boats if they collide.
    The onwater umpires can see that Barker should have kept clear so a penalty was awarded.
    So therefore a minimum amount of damage is done.

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  13. ciaron (1,165 comments) says:

    davidp
    see rule 14
    http://noticeboard.americascup.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/ISAF-Racing-Rules-of-Sailing-AC-Edition-v-1.13.pdf

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  14. WineOh (430 comments) says:

    @ davidp – Good thought around the start, they did manage to draw a penalty from TNZ at the beginning of Race 3… for all the good it did them.

    In Race 5, we crested the line first but lost the positional battle to get around the first mark ahead. So to me it seems that Spittle has the edge in the close quarters tactics but the inferior crew and boat when it comes to tacking and outright speed.

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  15. Nostalgia-NZ (4,697 comments) says:

    I’m totally enjoying it, for all the millions spent ETNZ have a speed advantage, a cool under fire skipper, a crew with an average age of 41, a boat said to be easier to sail than that of Oracle – but it remains steady as she goes one race at a time. Also live television at its best. Hats off to the designers and the crew.

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  16. rangitoto (145 comments) says:

    I heard a rumour that John Kostecki (Oracle tactician) has been given the boot. The foiling tack around the bottom mark was certainly a dumb move as it gave the long port tack on the edge of the Alcatraz cone to ETNZ.

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  17. wreck1080 (3,527 comments) says:

    Well, since everyone disagrees with my point that NZ loses most of the starts — show me the races where they actually won the start!

    Buffoons.

    We are winning because we simply have a faster boat.

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  18. David in Chch (503 comments) says:

    wreck: The point others were making is that Barker appears to be taking a conservative approach to the starts to avoid any problems, knowing that our boat and crew are better and can make up the lack of margin at the start. The Aussie skipper on the Oracle boat seems to be a fairly aggressive sort, and it seems better to be conservative at the start, knowing full well that we can take them later on. It’s simply brains over aggression.

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  19. doggone7 (492 comments) says:

    davidp: “… Now we’re doing well again under a National government. Coincidence? I would say yes, except we’ve recently won the Rugby World Cup under National, and our last win was in the era of Rogernomics that Labour now hate. Is it possible that Labour’s policies of dragging the successful down and rewarding mediocrity reflect themselves on the sporting field?”

    Dean Barker was in infant classes at school under a National Government when he learned to be determined. The designers were in standard two, three and four and learning great maths under National Governments. The sign writers were in art classes under National governments and learned how to do the flash signs on the side of the boat. God spent a fair bit of time at school under National governments and learned how to make tides and winds do the right things at the right time too.

    Okay, okay, I’ll stop being ridiculous and making inane comments. Maybe others will as well.

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  20. ciaron (1,165 comments) says:

    I thought Barker won both starts on day .1
    Didn’t see day 2.
    I’d say he didn’t lose todays start.
    and I’ve done a bit of match racing.

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  21. OTGO (457 comments) says:

    You also may have heard some on board chatter from OTUSA regarding the size of their jib. They were saying that they had the wrong one for today’s first race. So there is more than one error being made on each days racing. IMHO OTUSA have spent so much money on so many different options that it is doing their head in trying to find the right choice. Meanwhile ETNZ just go with what they have because they never had the funding for so many choices.

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  22. ciaron (1,165 comments) says:

    OTGO;

    I’d say what happened was the made a jib selection based on available information and that differed to what they got on the course. Back in the day you’d just select the desired headsail on the approach to the bottom mark and away you go, but the AC72′s are not allowed to carry sails in the hulls, so you have to make your best guess and go with it.

    These guys spend eons working out sail designs and they’ll have specific codes for various combinations of wind ranges and see conditions ect, which they will know inside out but if the conditions are in that zone of overlap between codes, well it doesnt’ take much change to end up with the wrong sail…

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  23. Colville (1,779 comments) says:

    Can someone (with citation) clear up if it is first to 9 OR best of 17 ?

    If its best of 17 we only need 4 more, if its first to 9 we need 5 more (and possible 19 races total but looking unlikely :-) )

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  24. KevinH (1,129 comments) says:

    Now that OTUSA have played their lay day card they leave themselves horribly exposed should a genuine breakage occurs. OTUSA will now have to tske drastic action by sacking Spithill and putting Coutts at the helm.

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  25. Colville (1,779 comments) says:

    Duncan Johnstone @ Stuff said

    This has probably confirmed the suspicion that Team New Zealand had a bit of damage to their sail on Monday when they dropped race four.

    Anyone know if its true?

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  26. alex Masterley (1,439 comments) says:

    It is first to 9 races.
    Look in the AC SI’s.
    In short ETNZ need to win 5 more races. Oracle need to win 10. The odds are not good for Oracle but have seen Sir Russell Coutts come back from 3 down in a best of 7 seven series to win so never say never.
    In other words the fat lady hasn’t even sung yet.

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  27. alex Masterley (1,439 comments) says:

    Colville, I hear about hydro issues on Monday but not the sail. I will speak to my men in the field to see what they know.

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  28. Michaels (1,317 comments) says:

    It all changed with Oracle’s penalties. Forget best of 17 or first to 9.
    It is
    ETNZ need 9 wins
    OTUSA need 11 wins.
    ETNZ have 4 = 5 more needed
    OTUSA have -1 so need 10 more wins

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  29. Pauleastbay (5,030 comments) says:

    KevinH says…………and putting Coutts at the helm.

    and Coutts has said he won’t step foot on one of these boats as they are big and scary, and I can’t say I blame him.

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  30. alex Masterley (1,439 comments) says:

    Kevin, Sir Russell has no experience driving these things. Ben Ainslie does. He is the Oracle B1 driver. Pretty good track record too as a sailor.
    My Picks for change:
    Possibly Jimmy for Ben, and Kostecki for ?

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  31. Elaycee (4,081 comments) says:

    @Colville: Grant Dalton told Murray Deaker on NewstalkZB Sunday, that because Oracle was penalised with the loss of 2 points, the 17 race programme for the America’s Cup was ditched and the winner will be determined by the first team to reach 9 points.

    The Americas Cup Homepage also states:

    The winner of the 34th America’s Cup will be the first to win 9 points. Don’t think of it as a best-of-17 series, the winner is the first to win 9 points. For the Kiwis that means nine race wins and for ORACLE TEAM USA it means 11, due to the penalty imposed by the International Jury.

    http://www.americascup.com/en/news/3/news/18024/day-2-preview-oracle-team-usa-looks-to-get-kiwis-off-track

    Sorted. :)

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  32. Colville (1,779 comments) says:

    Thanks for that.

    So Monday morning in NZ we will have it won :-)

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  33. alex Masterley (1,439 comments) says:

    Colville,
    Don’t count chickens.

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  34. Colville (1,779 comments) says:

    Speaking of chickens..

    Asked by Fairfax Media if he felt vulnerable in his job, Spithill said: “You can be a rooster one day, and a feather duster the next, mate.”

    Great line that. :-)

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  35. Duxton (546 comments) says:

    “…but however Oracle were leading this race until they made an error.”

    That’s not how I saw it, David. Barker went wide enough to give himself a clear run at overtaking Oracle. It worked.

    Barker is clearly superior to Spitall as a tactician, and ETNZ has greater speed upwind. As a result Barker can afford to be conservative at the start. That said, he did win both starts on Day One.

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  36. NK (918 comments) says:

    Agree with Duxton. Barker doesn’t need to be all gung-ho at the start as he knows he has superior boat speed and teamwork. Playing cautious at the starts is all part of ETNZ superior ability all round.

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  37. ciaron (1,165 comments) says:

    LOVING THE ARMCHIAR ADMIRAL COMMENTS :)

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  38. dime (8,778 comments) says:

    We had gear issues in the race we lost. Dimes sources are beyond reproach :D

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  39. Scott1 (357 comments) says:

    I know it is bad luck to count your chickens, but it is pretty obvious how many chickens there are.
    In the betting odds Oracle would probably be at something like 20/1. Something in the order of Tonga playing the All Blacks.

    Personally i hate it when the expert comentators pretend as if the odds are 50/50 when they already know who has the edge, they are supposed to be the experts not disinformation merchants.

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  40. Steve (North Shore) (4,327 comments) says:

    Here is a simple question.
    Is 17 the maximum number of races, or is it extended because of penalties/ changing boats, or something else? (Crash)

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  41. Steve (North Shore) (4,327 comments) says:

    I’m sure the Rules are first to +9.
    Leaves it wide open if Oracle win 10 races (score = +8)
    How the fuck can we get +9 from the remaining 7 races?

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  42. Griff (6,263 comments) says:

    These things are so extreme in the performance envelope they will not successfully complete all eighteen races without major catastrophic breakage or small errors of judgment causing destructive accidents.
    The random nature of the surface they race across is enough to make the odds of a boat being destroyed fairly certain over the race series.

    The world press since the real race started has been exceptional for our nation. Painting NZ as a world leader in both high tech and competitive organization.

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  43. Steve (North Shore) (4,327 comments) says:

    “complete all eighteen races ”
    Right Griff. I see you went to a school that taught variable arithmetic as well

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  44. Colville (1,779 comments) says:

    Steve NS.

    I asked same and had answered. If you read above. @ 12.43 ansd 12,49
    Its first to 9 POINTS not wins.

    So possible that 19 races need to be held.

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  45. Steve (North Shore) (4,327 comments) says:

    Colville,
    So it’s possible that there could be two more races, which was never stated by ANY media. See I have worked with sport draws and the best of ‘x’ with players on minus. But never like this with the best of going out the window.
    ——————-
    Digress:
    I’m not one to troll but,
    Pidgeon carrier just dropped some shit with names like ‘Coutts’ ‘Larry’ not talking.
    And then another one “Artemis’
    Has the Waka jumping started already?

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  46. Colville (1,779 comments) says:

    Steve NS.
    Its a variable length program anyways due to weather conditions.. but I am picking it will be done and dusted early next week :-)

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  47. J Mex (179 comments) says:

    Correct Colville.

    It was mentioned that the penalties could extend the race schedule which could possibly cause problems for the organisers. This is the line that OTUSA was pushing.

    Also, and for all those (not that I’ve seen any here), giving the commentators stick for saying it is currently 4:Nil, it still is.

    Oracle lose their first two points – if they get them – so if we were to win the next five races, the official scoreboard would be 9:0

    [Pedant mode off]

    As others have said, I agree that Baker won both starts on day one, when it was necessary to do so. Once ETNZ worked out they had better boat speed, they realised that the start was not so important. They are now playing the safer game.

    Also, loss race = Hydraulics issue for team NZ. No need for them to mention it though – Wait for the glimmer of hope in OTUSA, then crush the hope from them like ETNZ did today. :)

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  48. Zapper (845 comments) says:

    The day the penalties were announced it was made clear it is the first to 9, negating the best of 17. It’s been explained here and everywhere multiple times. Can’t believe there is still confusion

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  49. Left Right and Centre (2,397 comments) says:

    There’s nothing like the fair chance that someone might lose their life while sailing at high speed to really spice things up.

    Ooooo….. that’s excitement.

    Bunch of trougher sailors vs Larry Ellison. Miilions upon millions of dollars…. and what are the St Johns emergency team in the support boat paid to fish corpses out of the drink? That’s right… they got some fucking crew shirts… hahahahahahahahaha!!!!!!!

    Think about it this way… if ‘NZ’ loses… it will make the 1995 win all the more memorable and special as it is further appreciated just how rarely it happens.

    Is it too early to call it that if ‘NZ’ loses from here it’s a serious choke? Would it be a bigger choke than say…. 1999/ 2007 RWC exits?

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  50. Duxton (546 comments) says:

    Steve on North Shore: the fact that there might be more than 17 races as a result of the -2 penalty awarded to Oracle was well covered by media. The winner will be the first to 9 races, which now mean a maximum of 19.

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  51. stigie (645 comments) says:

    @Left Right and Centre

    What a wank !!

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  52. Left Right and Centre (2,397 comments) says:

    stigie 11:56 pm fuck you too you gutless little internet faggot.

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