Special to Nordstjernan online from RBYAC
Dateline: San Francisco, 01Sep2013
After winning the fourth race on Sept. 2, Team Sweden is overall tied on fourth place: RBYAC: Portugal wins 3rd race; Sweden, 4th!

Leader board
After two fleet races on Sunday both New Zealand teams emerged in podium positions. Conditions were ideal for this seven-leg course of the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup: a light breeze of 13knts on an ebb tide. Amazingly of the ten teams, only three points separated the top six teams, with three tied for third. The top two places told the story: NZL-1 (ETNZ’s sponsored New Zealand Racing Team) got sixteen points as leader by placing 2nd and 4th; France, fifteen points, by 4th and 3rd. That kind of consistency, plus the ability to move up through the pack (FRA), will determine the ultimate leader. Compare the less consistent places of the three tied for third: NZL-2 (Full Metal Jacket Racing), 7th and 1st; USA-1 (American Youth Racing Force), 1st and 7th; and Sweden, 6th and 2nd. Another two tied for fifth.
Positively, Sweden’s team was second behind the leader around the first mark in both races and significantly improved in the second. These American Cup races are the first time in sailing when the boats must cross the starting line at racing speed but not a moment before; that is, they accelerate from 3 knots to 24kts (3-27mph) as they cross the starting line.

Fleet Races 1 & 2
In the first race the American team (USA-1 from SF Bay) rounded the reach mark first followed immediately by Sweden. By leg 3 of 7, Portugal had pulled into second, but dropped back to third after Leg 4 of 7. USA-1’s rudder clipped the anchor-line of the third mark but because they took their penalty immediately, there was hardly any effect, except one of the team was pitched violently into a halyard. Australia was last in both races with equipment failures. USA-1 won at 23 minutes,19 seconds.
Immediately before the second race both Australia and Germany were fixing their jibs while their helmsmen were positioning to race. By the second race Sweden jetted across the start first but rounded the initial mark second. Race 2 was much closer than Race1: Sweden followed on the first two marks but cut off New Zealand and took Mark 3 first. They received a penalty and took it immediately only to have New Zealand immediately after get a penalty for crossing the boundary, which grew in severity because they didn’t realize and take it immediately. NZL2 won (22:59) with Sweden second (29 seconds later); however, Sweden was strong in both races and improving.

RBYAC Results after 2 races:
1) 16 pts (2nd+4th), NZL1;
2) 15pts (4th+3rd) FRA;
3) 14pts — (7th+1st) NZL2, (6th+2nd) SWE, (1st+7th) USA1;
4) 13pts (3rd+6th) POR;
5) 9pts — (8th+5th) SUI, (5th+8th) GER;
6) 4pts (9th+9th) USA2;
7) 2 pts (10th+10th) AUS.

Ted Olsson
San Francisco

ACEA / Photo: Gilles Martin-Raget
ACEA / Photo: Abner Kingman