Team New Zealand grabs America's Cup lead after Day 1

    17 de junio de 2017

    Hamilton, Bermuda, Jun 17 (efe-epa).- Emirates Team New Zealand snagged a 1-0 lead Saturday at the end of Day 1 of the 35th edition of the America's Cup yacht race, with the challenger comfortably defeating defender Oracle Team USA in both races off Hamilton, Bermuda.

    Peter Burling, the helmsman for the New Zealand team's campaign, has described this year's race as a chance for revenge after Oracle rallied to defeat the Kiwis in the final eight races of the 2013 America's Cup - held on San Francisco Bay - to retain its title with a 9-8 overall victory.

    Team New Zealand jumped out to a big lead in Saturday's first race in the waters of the Great Sound and won by a 30-second margin despite slowing down over the final stretch.

    That victory merely drew the two competitors level because, due to Oracle Team USA's victory in the America's Cup Qualifiers, Team New Zealand started the match with a score of -1.

    But the Kiwis, whose crew includes only one veteran of the 2013 loss, grabbed the advantage with a dominant win in Saturday's second race.

    Burling fended off Team USA counterpart James Spithill's aggressive attempt to beat the New Zealand team to the first mark and then built a huge 1 minute 35 second lead.

    Spithill and company recovered to nearly erase that advantage, but their catamaran appeared to come off its foils late in the race as New Zealand pulled away for an easy 1:27 win.

    The America's Cup will resume on Sunday with races three and four.