America’s Cup Match. It’s crunch time

America’s Cup Day 1.
pic by ACEA 2017/Sander van der Borch

by Richard Crockett

Having had to wait since last Sunday when Emirates Team New Zealand (ETNZ) and Oracle Team USA (OTUSA) faced off in races 3 & 4, there is much speculation and discussion around the world as to who is going to win the final showdown which starts tomorrow (Saturday 24 June) and goes on until there is a winner.

This is how things will play out.

The Overall Results show that ETNZ are 3 – 0 up against OTUSA, despite having won the first 4 races. Let’s not go into the issues of just how OTUSA was ‘gifted’ a point as it continues to make blood boil whenever it is discussed – including mine!

The result of this ‘gift’ is that the Challenger, ETNZ, have to win 8 races to take the trophy, whereas the Defender, OTUSA, need only win 7 races.

Match day 2.
pic by ACEA 2917/Gilles Martin-Raget

Two races per day are scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, and racing will continue daily thereafter until there is a winner.

It’s going to be fascinating racing out there as OTUSA was whitewashed in the first 4 races, and have surely had all the boffins up all night scratching their heads to find that ‘something extra’ in their boat. On the other hand, ETNZ, who had speed to burn will also have been looking at what options they have to build on that incredible extra speed they had in the first 4 races.

Will OTUSA make a comeback, or will ETNZ reverse the nightmare from San Francisco and punish the Americans as badly as they were punished?

The emotional money is on ETNZ to win, but everyone knows that OTUSA has an almost bottomless pit of resources which is being thrown at their problem.

Whatever your view and whoever you support, this weekend is the time to sit back in your favourite chair, bring on the snacks and your best bottle of Rum (Goslings is not available locally) and enjoy the spectacle as there will be close racing and fireworks out there – that’s for sure.