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U.S. SailGP Team faces pivotal test in Dubai to continue podium streak

by Laura Muma 11 Nov 2022 18:13 GMT November 12-13, 2022
A Red Bull wakeboarder foils alongside the USA SailGP Team during a practice session ahead of the Dubai Sail Grand Prix presented by P&O Marinas in Dubai, United Arab Emirates © Felix Diemer for SailGP

Jimmy Spithill is keenly aware of the critical juncture facing the United States SailGP Team as it prepares for its next challenge, this weekend's SailGP Middle East debut, the Dubai Sail Grand Prix presented by P&O Marinas. "We need to climb quite a lot of positions to try and crack into that top 3," said the team CEO and driver.

Thanks to podium finishes in the last two events, the American team has significantly consolidated the standings gap to just seven points away from the top three on the Season 3 leaderboard. Spithill says the team plans to carry that positive momentum into this weekend's racing.

"It's important for the team to have confidence because you definitely need belief that you can go out and win an event, but we know we have a lot of work ahead of us," said Spithill. "We need to keep fighting our way back into the competition."

Coming off of a second-place finish in Spain six weeks ago when the U.S. team missed the event win by just three seconds (U.S. SailGP fans can relive all the action when CBS airs the best of Spain Sail Grand Prix | Andalucía - Cádiz presented by NEAR this Sunday at 5 p.m. EST), Spithill is preparing for even closer racing action this weekend on Dubai's extremely tight race course.

He says a key for all the teams, but especially the U.S., is just to avoid the carnage that a confined race course can produce. Plus, Dubai's flat water and anticipated light to medium wind conditions will level the playing field, putting a premium on tactical decisions and flawless boat handling. "On a race track like this, anything can happen."

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