A challenge like this had never been seen before. Two troubled crews, stopped in the middle of the water in the same race, within a few minutes of each other. Effects of super-technological boats in which human error or wind variation have a devastating effect.
But from today Luna Rossa comes out very badly, not only losing both challenges, going under the total count, 3-5, but could pay off from a psychological point of view. Race-8 weighs heavily: the Italian crew lost badly after having had the victory in hand, when Team New Zealand, at the beginning of the race, had expanded too much, losing its set-up and ending up stopping. Luna Rossa, incredulous, found the way clear, immediately taking more than four minutes ahead.
The race, in practice, seemed to be over already, the New Zealand fans had remained speechless, but it was at that point that the Italian crew made a serious mistake: they widened their course too much, leaving the edges of the race course. In a few seconds she took two “boundary penalties”, two penalties that forced her to stop. New Zealand, now doomed, resumed sailing and was able to recover all the disadvantage, with Luna Rossa stopped, to then take off and close with an advantage of 3’55 ”. Incredible comeback, unexpected and perhaps decisive victory.
We’re back in the water tonight. The New Zealanders have the first match-ball: if they win the two races they go to 7-3, no longer reachable with three remaining races. Luna Rossa must win at least one challenge to extend the dream, but the best performance will be needed.