AC35: Now what? Challenger Finals start today
HAVING TROUBLE keeping up with the fast pace of the 35th America's Cup? You're not the only one. Your Ed. went to St Francis YC last evening to watch the Warriors, unfortunately, get drubbed by the Cavaliers, and was inundated with questions about where things stand in Bermuda. So here it is, in a nutshell:
The first-to-win-five Challenger Finals starts today with Emirates Team New Zealand and Skipper Peter Burling (NZL) taking on Sweden's Artemis Racing and Nathan Outteridge (AUS).
Groupama Team France (FRA), Land Rover BAR (GBR) and SoftBank Team Japan (JPN) have been eliminated.
Three races on tap for today. Live coverage in the USA is back on the NBCSN (cable and satellite, e.g., channel 723 on Xfinity in the Bay Area), and also via the NBC Sports App on phones and tablets (and computer browsers). Our Facebook friend Jack Everett reminded me last night that the NBC Sport App is also on Apple TV, Roku and other set-top boxes.
Racing begins at 1400 ADT (Bermuda), 1300 EDT, 1000 PDT. That's 0500 Sunday in New Zealand (and there will be a group of 100+ gathered again to watch their favorite sons at the Royal New Zealand YS), and 1900 CET for those of you in Europe.
Racing continues Sunday (as many as three) and Monday as many as necessary to finish the maximum of nine races to complete the series.
The winner of the Challenger Finals then races against the Defender, ORACLE TEAM USA, in the 35th America's Cup Match beginning next Saturday, June 17th. Racing is weekends only, at least to start – Saturday, Sunday, Saturday, Sunday. June 17, 18, 24, and 25. Then if necessary on Monday and Tuesday June 26-27. That's it folks. Done and dusted by the end of June.
The weather for the Challenger Finals looks fine. Medium air today and tomorrow but lighter on Monday. Today the breeze will drop off over the two-hour race period, making it a tough call for each team as to which set of foils to use. Once the choose a set, they can't change during the day. More on that on our Facebook Live Pre-Race Show again today (and all race days) at 0930 EDT / 1230 PDT / 1830 CET.
As always, courtesy of Windy.com....