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Australia extend lead in Season Three of SailGP

by Olivia Hogan / Australia SailGP Team 26 Sep 2022 00:27 BST 24-25 September 2022
Australia SailGP Team helmed by Tom Slingsby on Race Day 2 of the Spain Sail Grand Prix in Cadiz, Andalusia, Spain. 25th September © Bob Martin for SailGP

Tom Singsby and his Australia SailGP Team still maintain their position as number one in the SailGP Season 3 leaderboard, despite losing the podium final to first ever SailGP winners, Quentin Delapeierre’s French Team.

The action packed winner-takes-all podium race against Jimmy Spithill’s United States Team and Quentin Delapierre’ France Team saw all teams race in the four-up configurations, due to challenging light air conditions.

Tom Slingsby’s Australian side entered the podium final as the top scoring team, but Slingsby confessed that the team struggled to adapt to the last minute change to a four-up configuration. They started at the back of the pack and were unable to make up enough ground to claw their way back to the top of the three-team race, coming in third place.

Tom Slingsby said: “We did five fleet races at this event in the six-up configuration and were doing really well, but I think we weren't expecting and didn’t adapt quickly enough to the last minute four-up configuration rule change before the podium final.”

The team’s biggest SailGP Season 3 rival, Pete Burling’s New Zealand Team, were noticeably absent from the podium race, following a disastrous fifth fleet race, which put the team in sixth place overall in the event.

Slingsby said: “We are still happy with the result, but it feels like we lost an opportunity with New Zealand having a tough event and us making the podium final. I thought we had a real chance to open up a big point gap in the Season 3 leaderboard if we were to win.”

Tom Slingsby’s team still maintains a four point lead on the New Zealand Team, who are coming in second place behind the Australians in the SailGP Season 3 leaderboard. Delapeierre’s French Team celebrated their first ever SailGP victory amongst the exuberant Spanish fans, with the team’s rapid improvement in the fleet being commended by Tom Slingsby.

Slingsby said: “The French sailed amazingly and I thought they were the deserving winners of this event. I’m not sure if you can say they are the new team to beat but for sure the last few events they have had some solid results and it’s been very impressive to see their improvement.”

The Australian Team's results across the weekend also converted into driving real impact to help protect the ocean, through its innovative partnership with WLTH. WLTH has committed to funding the Australian team’s official Race For The Future partner Parley for the Ocean in beach and ocean cleaning, with the level of commitment amplifying based on the Australian team performance. Based on WLTH's commitment, Australia’s performance at the Spain Sail Grand Prix equated to 1,800 metres squared of beach and coastline to be cleaned up by Parley for the Oceans - a phenomenal contribution.

Tom Slingsby and his crew now have their sights firmly set on maintaining their Season 3 lead ahead of the next event of the season, the Dubai Sail Grand Prix. The event will take place on the 12-13 of November. Following the Dubai Sail Grand Prix, the team will then head to the Singapore Sail Grand Prix on 14-15 of January, before returning to home waters for the KPMG Australia Sail Grand Prix I Sydney on the 18-19 of February.

Tickets for the Australia Sail Grand Prix I Sydney will go on sale on the 24th of October. For further information on fan experiences visit SailGP.com/Sydney

SailGP Season 3 Overall Standings:
Australia SailGP Team- 50 points
New Zealand SailGP Team- 46 points
France SailGP Team- 41 points
Great Britain SailGP Team- 40 points
Canada SailGP Team- 36 points
Denmark SailGP Team- 36 points
United States SailGP Team- 34 points
Spain SailGP Team- 19 points
Switzerland SailGP Team- 14 points

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