Team Leads in Louis Vuitton Cup

AUCKLAND, New Zealand, December 7, 1999 – AmericaOne, the San Francisco-based St. Francis Yacht Club’s America’s Cup 2000 challenger, won its 5th race of the series today against The Spanish Challenge (ESP 47) by 11m 50s. Despite the extremely light and patchy winds blowing 8-10 knots from the south at the start of Race 6, AmericaOne faired well in the match and came out with the overall lead in the Louis Vuitton Cup.

After a slow start for AmericaOne trailing behind Bravo Espana by 2s, the two teams split. Mid-way up the first windward leg the Spanish tacked, crossing on starboard with a five boatlength lead over USA 49. Paul Cayard, at the helm of AmericaOne, took the favored right side, benefiting from a wind shift that brought them into the lead. At the rounding of the first weather mark, AmericaOne led by 36s and as the race progressed AmericaOne continued to increase its lead. The breeze began to drop on the second upwind leg, and by the second downwind leg both teams found themselves at a standstill in zero knots of wind, going less than one knot. After finally rounding the last leeward mark, USA 49 managed to capitalize on the fickle winds and further distanced themselves from Bravo Espana by a mile and a half, crossing the finish more than 11 minutes ahead of ESP 47.

“The conditions on the race course today were unlike any conditions we’ve had so far in the Louis Vuitton Cup,” commented AmericaOne Meteorologist, Roger ‘Clouds’ Badham. “Fortunately, our team was able to capitalize on a couple of wind shifts which gave us a strong lead combined with great boat handling by the team.”

Only three matches were sailed today on the Atlantic Course, and both races on the Pacific Course were abandoned due to extremely light wind conditions. When the two hour and 25 minute time limit expired on the Le Defi Francais vs. Young America match, the French were well in the lead. This race is rescheduled for the end of Round Robin 3, on Tuesday, December 14. The second race cancelled today was Young Australia vs. America True. With Young Australia in the lead, the match was called off and is now rescheduled for tomorrow. Young America will sail its previously postponed race tomorrow against Stars & Stripes who just completed repairs on their damaged bulkhead. Abracadabra sailed around the course alone to collect nine points since Be hAPpy has withdrawn from the Louis Vuitton Cup.

RR3/Race 6 Starting Line-Up: Curtis Blewett of Los Angeles, CA, bow; Ralf Steitz of Port Washington, NY, mid-bow; Bill Bates of San Diego, CA, mast/sewer; Josh Belsky of Hood River, OR, pit; Matt Welling of Bay Shore, NY, grinder; Mike Howard of Malibu, CA, grinder; Jim Nicholas of San Diego, CA, grinder; David McClintock of Portsmouth, RI, upwind trim; Carter Perrin of Houston, TX, downwind trim; Lexi Gahagan of Wilmington, DE, runner; Paul Cayard of Kentfield, CA, helmsman; John Kostecki of Fairfax, CA, tactician; Morgan Larson of Capitola, CA, traveler; Terry Hutchinson of Annapolis, MD, mainsheet; Sean Clarkson of Middletown, RI, main assist and Gavin Brady of Annapolis, MD, navigator. The 17th crew person was Mr. Sol Trujillo of Colorado, USA.

Final Scores To Date:

AmericaOne / 81 points

Nippon Challenge / 74.5 points

Prada / 73 points

America True /65 points***

Stars & Stripes / 45.5 points*

Spanish Challenge /44 points

Young America / 42 points***

Abracadabra 2000 /34 points

Le Defi Francais /32 points***

Young Australia /18 points***

FAST2000 /8 points**

* Stars & Stripes had BYE today.

**FAST 2000 has withdrawn from the Louis Vuitton Cup.

***These races were abandoned today and are rescheduled.

Other Delta Results:

Nippon beat Prada Challenge – Delta 03:13


Le Defi Francais vs Young America / RACE WAS ABANDONED

Young Australia vs America True / RACE WAS ABANDONED

AmericaOne ‘s schedule for the remainder of Round Robin 3 is as follows: