Nippon Challenge Retires with Broken Mast

AUCKLAND, New Zealand, November 11, 1999 — AmericaOne, the San Francisco-based St. Francis Yacht Club’s America’s Cup 2000 challenger, defeated Nippon Challenge’s Asura (JPN 44) in Race 4 of Round Robin 2 for the Louis Vuitton Cup. The Japanese team retired approximately five boatlengths from the second leeward mark when its mast broke during a jibe, according to the Race Committee.

Racing was delayed this morning by the Race Committee due to shifty winds on the Atlantic course where AmericaOne and Nippon Challenge were scheduled to race. Nippon Challenge led AmericaOne over the starting line by a slight margin. Immediately, AmericaOne tacked away onto port to build boatspeed. With the wind slowly building on the left side of the course, AmericaOne’s Tactician John Kostecki made the call to tack back to the left side and in doing so gained on the Japanese competitors.

“We had a two boatlength lead four minutes from the first windward mark when our genoa broke,” said AmericaOne Skipper Paul Cayard. “The Japanese took the lead there and held it for the next two legs.

“On the second downwind leg, AmericaOne closed to a position of control,” Cayard continued. “Very near the mark Nippon was penalized for crossing on port tack in front of AmericaOne, on starboard. Twenty seconds later their mast came down. It was a tough fight until that point.”

Nippon Challenge retired from racing and was towed back to the Viaduct Basin to assess the damage.

RR2/Race 4 Starting Line-Up: Greg Prussia of Oroville, CA, bow; Curtis Blewett of Los Angeles, CA, mid-bow; Bill Bates of San Diego, CA, mast/sewer; Josh Belsky of Hood River, OR, pit; Mike Howard of Malibu, CA, grinder; Matt Welling of Bay Shore, NY, grinder; Morgan Trubovich of Newport, RI, downwind trim; David McClintock of Portsmouth, RI, downwind trim; Gavin Brady of Annapolis, MD, 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 Lexi Gahagan of Wilmington, DE, navigator. The 17th crew person was Mr. Ron Martin, Telcordia Technologies, Plano, TX.

Final Scores To Date:

Prada /22 points

AmericaOne /20 points

Young America /16 points

America True /14 points

Nippon Challenge /13.5 points

Stars & Stripes /12.5 points

Abracadabra 2000 /12 points

Spanish Challenge /9 points

FAST2000 /8 points

Le Defi Francais /6 points

Young Australia /1 point

Other Delta Results:

Stars & Stripes over Prada Challenge/01:51

Abracadabra 2000 over Young Australia/YOUNG AUSTRALIA RETIRED DURING RACE

FAST 2000 over Young America/ YOUNG AMERICA DID NOT RACE

America True over Le Defi Francais/ 00:59 BYE: Spanish Challenge

Round Robin 2

AmericaOne’s schedule for the remainder of Round Robin 2 is as follows: