Nation & World News

Oracle Team USA Defeats New Zealand, Keeps The America’s Cup

By Scott Neuman on September 25th, 2013

Oracle Team USA has successfully defended the America’s Cup, leaving challenger New Zealand in its wake off San Francisco after clawing back from a seven-race deficit in one of the most spectacular comebacks in yachting history.

A week ago, it looked to be all over for the U.S., with Emirates Team New Zealand having built a seemingly unassailable lead and poised at one race away from taking the Auld Mug back to Wellington.

But Oracle Team USA, skippered by James Spithill, with Ben Ainslie in the tactician’s seat, took the wind out of the Kiwi’s momentum, finding the speed in their giant 72-foot foiling catamaran and outmaneuvering New Zealand on the course.

Member station KQED’s Jon Brooks says:

“They said it over and over: At the end of the day, it’s the faster boat that always wins. Oracle Team USA is that boat — it has just completed what has to be considered one of the greatest comebacks in all of sports history.”

San Francisco Chronicle sports editor Al Saracevic tweeted:

Oracle started the final series two points in the hole after a penalty stemming from the Louis Vuitton Cup challenger series in July, where competitors sail smaller, 45-foot catamarans. An examination of Oracle’s boats found that lead pellets had been hidden inside of forward support posts, apparently to aid in keeping the finicky multihulls upright in stronger wind.

Speaking on Tuesday, after winning two races to tie up the series, Spithill said the exciting thing for him was “seeing how this team has gelled together.”

“Sometimes you need to face that barrel of the gun to come together,” he said. “You can get wobbly in the knees or you can look into the barrel. Every day we’ve managed to step it up more.”

Although nationalism still plays a key role in the competition, the teams are international in character: Oracle’s skipper is an Australian and the tactician is from the U.K. The team is sponsored by software billionaire Larry Ellison’s company. Emirates Team New Zealand is backed by the Dubai-based airline.

The America’s Cup is the oldest and most prestigious trophy in yachting and stems from an 1851 contest between the schooner America and an English rival around the Isle of Wight. America won the race and the United States successfully defended the Cup for the next 132 years until Australia took it in 1983. Since then it has changed hands several times.

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

This entry was posted in News from NPR. Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.

 

More Stories in News from NPR

Officials are investigating the cause of a tent collapse that killed two people and injured more than a dozen others.

Circus Tent Collapse Kills 2 During Storm In New Hampshire

“We lost two lives – a father and a daughter – at an event that was supposed to be fun,” Gov. Maggie Hassan says.


A boy paddles a makeshift raft in flooded Kalay township, in the Sagaing Region of Myanmar. Heavy monsoon rains have affected more than 210,000 people in 12 out of Myanmar's 14 states and regions since June.

Monsoon Flooding Kills Dozens In Myanmar, Prompting Calls For Help

More than 200,000 people have been displaced by floods and landslides, with at least 46 deaths reported.


The death of Cecil the lion, lured out of a protected area in Zimbabwe, has led Delta Airlines to stop shipping big-game trophies.

Delta And American Ban Big Game Trophies As Airline Freight

Delta said in a statement on Monday that, effective immediately, it “will officially ban shipment of all lion, leopard, elephant, rhinoceros, and buffalo trophies.” American followed hours later.


It is illegal to sell toy guns in New York that look real.

New York Attorney General Orders Immediate Halt To Realistic Toy Gun Sales

New York law requires toy guns made in realistic colors to have a bright, 1-inch-wide orange stripe “down both sides of the barrel and the front end of the barrel,” according to a press release.


The "Rocky Fire" isn't expected to be contained until Aug. 10.

California Wildfire Blazes Through 60,000 Acres, Containment Estimated Next Week

Cal Fire says almost 3,000 firefighters — using four airtanker planes, 19 helicopters and 285 fire engines — have been “working aggressively to build control lines.”


Thank you for your support

WUFT depends on the support of our community — people like you — to help us continue to provide quality programming to North Central Florida.
Become a Sustainer
I want to support FM 89.1/NPR
I want to support Florida's 5/PBS
Donate a Vehicle
Underwriting Payments