Team New Zealand had a curtainraiser encounter with Oracle in their final practice today, tangling over the first two legs of the course ahead of Sunday's America's Cup opener.
Team New Zealand were practising their starting work on their final training day when Oracle pulled up along side and it was "game-on".
Of course there was plenty of foxing. Neither team would be wanting to give away any speed secrets on the eve of the main event. But Team New Zealand enjoyed the brief tussle.
"They paced us across the reach and down the first run," confirmed Team New Zealand chief operations officer Kevin Shoebridge.
"It was pretty nice to be alongside. One thing for sure it is going to be a tough couple of weeks and a pretty close race."
Skipper Dean Barker said it merely confirmed what he always felt.
"We got a bit of a look, I don't think anything terribly conclusive ... as we thought it seems like it's going to be pretty close."
It's just the second time the two arch rivals have run alongside each other. They had a brief drag race last month that was declared "a draw".
Barker was just happy to get the day out of the way. It was team New Zealand's 100th day in their boats and a fitting final training run. There was no damage and no injuries.
"We have got the ton out of the way, it was a good day, we just wanted a good solid hit before the racing."
Shoebridge said that they'd done "all we can, now let's go racing".
"It's amazing really when you think how far we've come in 100 days. We looked at some videos of our first 10-15 days yesterday and the differences are immense."
The first race is this Sunday from 8.10am (NZT).
- © Fairfax NZ News