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Emirates GBR 'still in the fight' after Race Day One in Bermuda

by Emirates GBR SailGP Team 5 May 09:59 BST 4-5 May 2024
Emirates Great Britain SailGP Team helmed by Giles Scott in action on Race Day 1 of the Apex Group Bermuda Sail Grand Prix © Samo Vidic for SailGP

The Emirates Great Britain SailGP Team is "still in the fight" following Race Day One of the Apex Group Bermuda Sail Grand Prix, after pulling off some great manoeuvrers to climb back from some tough starts. Australia sits at the top of the leaderboard going into Day Two, with Emirates GBR in sixth after placing 8-5-5 in Saturday's three fleet races.

Emirates GBR Driver Giles Scott said: "It was a game of snakes and ladders out there but we were able to pull through the fleet well in the last two races of the day. With that being said, we were out the back for the starts so right now I'm a bit frustrated with how the starts went, but the rest of it felt really good on-board. The positives were that we moved through the fleet really well, so we just need to nail down those starts to give ourselves the best chance."

The event got off to a glamorous start, with athletes walking the red carpet in their best attire. Emirates GBR team members Hannah Mills, Iain Jensen, Hannah Diamond and Nick Hutton were kitted out by the Hamilton Princess Hotel, with Iain and Nick wearing traditional Bermudian clothing of Bermuda shorts, knee-length socks, shirts, ties and blazers.

There were only nine teams on the water for Race Day One, after the United States sustained damage to their wing in a dramatic capsize during practice racing on Friday, which ruled them out of action for the rest of the weekend. The USA boat tipped over with crew falling out of their cockpits, onto the wing and into the water during the third and final practice race. Luckily, all of Taylor Canfield's crew were OK, sustaining only minor injuries.

As the nine boats lined up for Race One, Emirates GBR was one of few boats to be up and foiling on the approach to the start line, but it became extremely tight in the pack at Mark One, with teams battling to remain at the front of the fleet. Australia and France led the teams after Mark One, before France suddenly fell of their foils on leg three of seven. Australia went on to take the win, followed by Canada and New Zealand, with Emirates GBR finishing eighth.

In Race Two, Emirates GBR struggled to get a good start, but persevered throughout the race to make their way up to fifth position. Australia sealed another race win, while Canada took second and Denmark third. It was much the same for Race Three, with a difficult start for the British crew but in leg three they managed work their way through the pack, gaining four places. The team was battling with Canada for fifth place as the finish line approached, and pulled off a spectacular overtake at the last mark to fend off Phil Robertson's Canadian crew.

Emirates GBR Wing Trimmer Iain Jensen said: "It was a mixed day, we were sailing the boat well but we just got a bit tangled up in the starts. We are going the right way through the fleet though and we are still in the fight. I think with a few little tweaks we will be in a really good spot, so we're looking forward to tomorrow and will push hard to try and make that final race - it's still all to play for tomorrow."

Race Day Two kicks off at 18:00 BST on Sunday, with UK viewers able to watch the teams battle it out to make the three-boat event final race live on ITVX as well as on the Sail-World.com and YachtsandYachting.com homepages.

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