Team NZ in costly double collision in Cardiff
Team New Zealand's charge at the Extreme Sailing Series in Cardiff was halted by a double collision in Cardiff today, forcing them to sit out the last five races.
Skipper Dean Barker and his crew made a good start to the fifth race of the second day, rounding the first mark in second and then gaining the lead.
But it all came to a premature end when they were tail-gated by regatta leaders Alinghi and SAP Extreme at the next mark.
The Kiwis lost both rudders, leaving them without any steering.
''We had to pull out of that race and sit out the following two while repairs were made,'' Barker said as his team dropped from seventh to ninth on the points table.
They reported no injuries from the double collision.
A jury hearing will be held where culpability will be determined and decide if points will be awarded for the missed races.
''We feel we have a pretty strong case but it's up to the umpires to determine if we were in the right or wrong,'' Barker said.
With the boats hitting top speeds of 24 knots in winds gusting from 10 to 18 knots, and with a race course just 300 metres wide in places, the fleet were on the congested start line and even closer during the mark roundings.
With races lasting just six minutes, manoeuvres had to be executed quickly and with precision, with rapid deploys of the gennakers, before gybing and furling all in less than 20 seconds.
It's been a frantic regatta. Groupama sailing team, damaged in a collision with GAC Pindar on the first day, was unable to complete repairs overnight and did not compete today.
They will be back on the water tomorrow and will be awarded average points for the races they have missed.
Extreme Sailing Series, Cardiff
Standings after Day 2 - 20 races:
1st Alinghi (SUI) 141 points.
2nd The Wave, Muscat (OMA) 139 points.
3rd J.P. Morgan BAR (GBR) 131 points.
4th SAP Extreme Sailing Team (DEN) 120 points.
5th Realteam by Realstone (SUI) 113 points.
6th Oman Air (OMA) 106 points 7th Red Bull Sailing Team (AUT) 91 points.
8th Gazprom Team Russia (RUS) 87 points.
9th Emirates Team New Zealand (NZL) 75 points.
10th GAC Pindar (AUS) 67 points.
11th Groupama sailing team (FRA) 33 points.