AC35: Challenger Finals, Race 5 – SWE wins yet another start but NZL speeds by, then Artemis breaks
HAMILTON, BDA – Artemis Racing wins another start! Full marks to Nathan Outteridge & Co. They are five for five. But the breeze is a little lighter and NZL looking a touch quicker upwind on Leg 3. NZL are ahead and to leeward after SWE tacks on NZL's hip. NZL goes into high mode and closes gauge, is able to luff SWE, forcing them to tack away. In the process NZL protests for windward-leeward but the Umpires correctly green-flag it. But NZL has taken the lead and are ahead at the Leg 3 gate by :13.
Downwind on Leg 4 of 7, the Kiwis extend slightly, leading by :18 at the Leg 4 gate. Loose cover by the speedy Kiwis up Leg 5. Ken Read observes, correctly, that every time ETNZ gets ahead they extend. When SWE is ahead they can't seem to extend. Surely the sign of which is the quicker boat.
Breeze continues to drop, about 10 knots now, and in the past that has favored ETNZ vis-a-vis all the other Challengers. They are steadily extending, and lead by :39 at the Mark 5 gate.
Then SWE breaks down on Leg 6. Ugh, they have to retire. Chase boat comes along side. TV audio coming off Artemis, and now camera shots of shore team attention being paid to the port dagger-foil case, both indicate a problem with that port board or it's casing.