NZ build on lead over USA in America's Cup

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and her husband Joachim Sauer left meet with Pope Francis on the occasion of their private audience at the Vatican City Saturday

In this photo provided by the America's Cup Event Authority, Emirates Team New Zealand competes during Race 2 of the America's Cup match sailing competition, Sunday, June 18, 2017, in the Great Sound of Bermuda.

New Zealand continued to excel in light-wind sailing on the second day of racing as helmsman Peter Burling, 26, capitalised on a small mistake by the USA team and extended his lead throughout Sunday.

Two races are scheduled on both days this weekend, beginning at 14:12 local time (1:12pm ET).

HAMILTON, Bermuda (AP) - Jimmy Spithill and his mates with Oracle Team USA might need to start tapping out an SOS from the Bermuda Triangle.

Both races there was some chances but these guys [Emirates Team New Zealand] at the end of the day made fewer mistakes.

One of the more intriguing matchups, besides how the teams 50-foot, foiling catamarans compare and how well the crews sail them, is how Team New Zealand helmsman Peter Burling, a 26-year-old Americas Cup rookie, holds up against Spithill.

Although they won twice, by 30 seconds and 1 minute, 28 seconds, the Kiwis lead just 1-0.

New Zealand are closing in on winning the America's Cup, having claimed four of the eight races they need to recapture the world's oldest global sporting competition. Oracle needs to win seven to keep the silver trophy in the hands of American software billionaire Larry Ellison.

Racing resumes Saturday and Sunday.

"We're under no illusions that we've got a lot of hard work going forward", said Burling".


It's a spectacle that would be unrecognizable to America's Cup sailors of even two decades ago - and other-worldly to those of 1851, when a syndicate of NY businessmen sailed the schooner America across the Atlantic and humbled the best of the British fleet in a race around the Isle of Wight in what marked the birth of the America's Cup.

"We're more anxious about how to make the boat go quicker, how to get around the track quicker".

Oracle does have history on its side.

Welcome to day two of the Americas Cup Match, presented by Louis Vuitton.

Oracle Team USA's track record of performing when their backs are against the wall and the intervening five days should set up a fascinating showdown to the competition as both teams race to modify their boats and improve performance. He's also the CEO of the America's Cup Event Authority.

“Look, I really try and portray the team, ” Spithill said Friday after he and Burling posed with the Americas Cup.

"You see in Peter Burling that he's much more laid back". We tidied up a lot of those little errors we made yesterday around the course and I think that really showed. "We know if we stand still these guys will be catching us".

In light easterly winds, the New Zealand team's foils, which lift the boat out of the water at speed, appeared to be more efficient, consolidating the Kiwis' reputation as light wind specialists.

The always-innovative Kiwis are using a "cyclor" grinding system. During tacks and gybes, the cyclists unclip, run across the trampoline to the other hull and clip back in, powering the hydraulic systems that control the wingsail and raise and lower the daggerboards. Olympic rowing champion Joe Sullivan replaced him for Race 4.

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