Day 2 – two losses for BAR

LandroverBAR had a bad day on the water yesterday, losing against USA Team Oracle and Emirates Team New Zealand as they ‘stuffed’ their boat, losing speed, distance and two races.

Ben Ainslie’s crew actially made the best of both starts, but lost out rounding the third mark in each race as they ‘stuffed’ their boat, slamming her bows into the water, losing time and distance to their competitors.

At the end of their first race against the USA Team Oracle, BAR’s losing margin was 33 seconds – the ‘stuff’ at mark 3 having cost them some 300m.

The loss against Emirates Team New Zealand in BAR’s second race saw BAR again take the start, but then ‘technical errors’ saw their speed against ETNZ dropping, leaving BAR 1minute 28seconds astern at the finish.

But it’s not all grief for BAR as the team – even with three losses – still has three points, enough to keep the boat in 2nd place behind USA Team Oracle, which has 5pts.

Ben Ainslie assures everyone the Land Rover BAR boat is OK, but he also agreed the shore team would be looking at the boat again overnight.

According to Land Rover BAR’s chief executive Martin Whitmarsh, the team’s clashes with SoftBank Team Japan on the first day of racing were so bad the boat nearly sank. Mr Whitmarsh said Ben had to keep the boat on foils after the collision, keeping the boat internals and electronics dry.

Even so, Whitmarsh said the BAR shore team had a long night of repairs and had to cut and scrape away nearly 20ft of carbon fibre casing and aluminium honeycomb ‘filling’.

The collision between BAR and SoftBank Team Japan was horrendous and BAR is lucky the SoftBank crew got away without injury as the BAR leeward hul bounced on the Japanese boat and its crew.

In a pointed remark aimed at Ben during the skipper’s post race broadcast, SoftBank skipper Dean Barker told the interviewer their boat had been repaired, but the crew was “still waiting for Ben to bring over a few beers”. He added “he didn’t do it last night, so perhaps he’ll do it tonight…”

It seems Ben is not everyone’s favourite skipper in Bermuda. But I’m sure he’s been there before and won’t let it bother him too much.

It was a good day for the French Groupama team as it beat the Swedish Artemis Racing – the much fancied overall favourite to take the racing to USA Team Oracle. Artemis Racing then went on to beat Oracle Team USA…

The New Zealanders then beat SoftBank Team Japan, followed by Land Rover BAR.

Oracle Team USA had little trouble with SoftBank Team Japan.

Overall standings after Day 2: Oracle Team USA on 5pts, BAR on 3pts, ETNZ on 3pts, Sweden on 2pts, France on 1pt and Japan on 1pt.

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This article was written and/or edited by the UK-based MIN team.

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