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Foto: Sander van der Borch / Artemis Racing.
Stellar day for Artemis Racing
Racing was back on at the America’s Cup World Series in Plymouth today, with lighter air, yet gusty conditions, making for challenging sailing for the nine professional teams competing.
Having worked solidly to repair the damage sustained to the team’s wingsail during Sunday’s practice race, the Swedish team was the force to be reckoned with on the race course today.
Skipper Terry Hutchinson’s solid starts, combined with the crew’s excellent boat handling and good tactical decisions, saw the Swedish team put 1st, 4th and 1st place finishes respectively on the scoreboard.
By winning two out of the three races today, Artemis Racing leads the Fleet Racing seeding, two points ahead of Emirates Team New Zealand (25 points), while Team Korea (23 points) lies in third position.
Today marks only the second time that Skipper Terry Hutchinson and Tactician Iain Percy had raced together, but it proved to be a winning combination. The other newcomer to the crew on the AC45 for this event is Australian bowman Andy Fethers, who also races on the team’s RC44 and Extreme 40, as part of the team’s ongoing crew rotation programme.
“Today’s racing is a baseline to start from and move forward. We are in a building phase as a team so it’s great to have good days, they make the not so good days feel better,” said Skipper Terry Hutchinson. “I have heaps of respect for our Tactician Iain (Percy). Having someone as good as Iain onboard is a good settler as it brings confidence to the way we can sail and allows me to focus more on the boat handling. His maturity and ability to win is key.”
“It is absolutely full on out there! The racing is tight and there is plenty of tacking and gybing. There is never a second to relax. I have a bit of a chance to contribute upwind, but not as much on the downwind legs,” Iain Percy commented modestly. Percy also took the time today to meet visiting Prince Michael of Kent before dock out.
One of the team’s VIP guest racers onboard the AC45 today was Stefan Rahm, Secretary General of the Swedish Sailing Federation and Tactician for Victory Challenge in the 32nd America’s Cup. Stefan thoroughly enjoyed his chance to sail on the AC45 and said: “It’s clear how the new America’s Cup is transforming sailing and this is such an important platform for Swedish sailing.”
Racing continues tomorrow to determine the seeding for the Match Racing which will begin on Friday and continue through Saturday before the World Championship race on Sunday.