HIt was a painful end. With Dean Parker, the Copa America has found its first victim. The New Zealand captain of the American service could not work miracles this weekend: after four straight defeats, the Patriots were eliminated early by the Italians in the semi-finals of the Prada Cup competitors. So it is clear that a European team, whether British or Italian, will challenge the New Zealanders for the cup.
Business reporter for South Asia / Pacific based in Singapore.
A short sentence from US captain Terry Hutchinson, who actually fell on Friday after the first two defeats, summed up the weekend drama off Oakland: “It’s hard to control the boat,” he admitted. A sentence that tastes bitter after a commitment of nearly $ 100 million by sponsors and planning since 2017. Yet it’s true. Outside on the regatta, the Patriot ascended again in the second round for no apparent reason and raised meters from the surface of the water.
The last time it happened was nearly two weeks ago, which then led to the spectacular flip-flop shortly before the finish line. As a result, the high-tech yacht nearly sank and was only towed into port with a meter-sized hatch with the help of all competing crews. After working the clock, it was ready to take off outside Auckland on Friday morning.
To thank everyone for their help, the boat builders sprayed the plasters with the colors of New Zealanders, Italians and Britons, and “Thank You” for the corrected infusion. Nice gesture – however the fun of the prestigious New York Yacht Club boat with millionaires like Roger Bensk ceased after the first wave. The automotive entrepreneur is known for the phrase that he knows very little about sailing, but he knows a lot about profit.
The Americans didn’t get a chance against Luna Rossa at the weekend. “The biggest problem was losing your water training days, where you are working perfectly your way forward,” Parker said after the elimination. “Looking at how Luna Rossa is progressing, we may have underestimated the impact it was having.” He added that the week is eternity in this competition, referring to training days lost during the Patriot repair.
The man has been sailing from Oakland in the American Cup to change teams since 1995. On the weekend, Parker spoke visibly influenced by most Cup of Soul fans when he critically examined the fastest spiral shift toward high technology in the fight for the oldest sports trophy in the world: We had the boats and all the developments with us, and a little bit of persistence will benefit us all now. Our boats are incredibly expensive, and the campaigns cost a lot of money. That’s why we only have three competitors. In order to be sustainable, a trophy needed six, eight, maybe ten. Teams again. “
Yacht fighting on its wings on Hauraki Bay is more reminiscent of a mixture of sleigh and computer games than the classic sailing regatta. Until Saturday, Parker’s biggest defeat was his retirement from his country. Whether the 47-year-old, father of four, who is once again the tragic champion among New Zealand athletes after the coup and retirement as a group, will compete in the Copa America again, he left it open on Saturday.
However, the Italians will now compete against the British for the “King of Olympic Seafarers”, Sir Ben Ainsley, starting February 13th. “We were very disappointed,” Jimmy Spethel, the captain of the Australian team, said, reviewing the first races against the British. After a day off on Monday, Luna Rossa will exercise its maneuvers on the water and will exhaust its potential speed by driving a motorboat. According to their own estimates, Italians have improved their boat speed by a good 10 percent since Christmas. On Friday, out of all, eliminated Americans set a record for AC75 speed in the first round with 53.31 knots (98.73 km / h).
Spithill was not affected by emotions after reaching the two finalists. The 41-year-old won the 2010 Cup as the youngest captain of all time with BMW Oracle Racing and defended it three years later. Known in the scene as freezing cold. Thus, he answered the question about the biggest challenge that awaited him now: “Crossing the finish line before the other.”