N. Zealand breezes by Sydney '95 AMERICA'S CUP 1995

January 20, 1995|By Peter Baker | Peter Baker,Sun Staff Writer

SAN DIEGO -- Chris Dickson and his Win New Zealand team won the start against Sydney '95 yesterday in the America's Cup challenger trials and walked away to its second victory in three starts.

"After our rather trying performance against Team New Zealand [on Tuesday], we were happy to get out and get around the track without injury to the boat or the crew," said Win New Zealand tactician Peter Lester. "Today's race was dominated by the action of the first beat."

Conditions on the 18.55-nautical-mile course on the Pacific Ocean off Point Loma were winds from 8 to 11 knots and negligible seas.

After aggressive pre-start maneuvering, both boats crossed the starting line on port tack with Sydney '95 to weather and forced to tack back to get to the favored left side of the course.

In the tacking duel that followed, Win New Zealand showed better speed and crew work, working out to a 27-second lead over Sydney '95 at the top of the first leg.

Win New Zealand built the margin to 1 minute, 24 seconds by the finish.

Sydney '95, after winning its first two starts of the Louis Vuitton Cup, is now 2-2.

In the second of two races postponed from Wednesday, Nippon Challenge crushed Spain by 4 minutes, 3 seconds.

"The conditions today were quite steady for San Diego," said Nippon skipper John Cutler, whose Japanese team is now 3-1, with its only loss coming to Win New Zealand. "And once we got ahead, we were able to try a lot of things with sail trim and so on to get ready for [today's race]."

Today, Nippon is matched against unbeaten Team New Zealand.

"We've only just gotten the boat in the water, so we don't really know a lot about sailing her," said Cutler. "But she seems to go really well in 8 to 10 knots of wind, and I guess we'll see how it really goes against Team New Zealand tomorrow."

In its race against Sydney '95, Win New Zealand won the start by 5 seconds and gained on every leg except the second windward and last downwind legs.

In light air on Tuesday, the unnamed, shark gray Win New Zealand yacht seemed sticky and moved poorly in confused seas.

Yesterday, the Bruce Farr design moved easily in 9 to 11 knots, clocking more than 8.5 knots on the downwind legs and averaging more than 7 knots on the upwind legs.

Win New Zealand crewman Steve Cotton, who lost two fingers in an accident during Tuesday's race, has had surgery, Lester said, and will be back sailing with the team in five or six weeks.

SUMMARY

Yesterday's conditions at the start were 8 to 11 knots NW. Seas were 3 feet.

DEFENDERS

PD Yesterday's result: PACT '95 (4-0) def. Team Dennis Conner (1-3)

Start: .... PACT '95 .. +:01 .. 1st leg: .. Conner ... +:32

2nd leg: .. Conner .... +42 .. 3rd leg: .. Conner ... +1:22

4th leg: .. Conner .... +:32 .. 5th leg: .. PACT '95.. +:59

6th leg: .. PACT '95 .. +5:00 .. Time ..... ....... .. 2:43:12

Yesterday's bye: America3 (1-3).

Today's race: PACT '95 vs. Team Dennis Conner.

Today's bye: America3.

CHALLENGERS

Yesterday's results: Race 1: Win New Zealand (2-1) def. Sydney '95 (2-2), 1:24; Race 2: Nippon (3-1) def. Spain (0-3), 4:03.

Yesterday's bye: France (0-3).

Today's races: France vs. Win New Zealand; Race 2: Spain vs. oneAustralia; Team New Zealand vs. Nippon.

Today's bye: Sydney '95.

Tomorrow's races: Spain vs. Win New Zealand; oneAustralia vs. France; Japan vs. Sydney '95.

Tomorrow's bye: Team New Zealand.

Sunday's races: Team New Zealand vs. Sydney '95; Spain vs. France; Win New Zealand vs. oneAustralia.

$ Sunday's bye: Nippon

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