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© Chris Cameron 2012

© Chris Cameron 2012

(Source: ETNZ) Three elements of the wing were extensively damaged. One will be repaired overnight, one has been bought from the event and one will be cannibalised from the Youth America’s Cup AC45. Skipper Dean Barker vowed the team would be back on the water for the second day of the America’s Cup World Series final regatta for the 2011-12 season.

He said the wing extension – fitted to the top of the rig of all competitors for better light-air performance – filled with water making it difficult to get the boat back upright. “We were on our side for an hour. That’s when the damage was done.When we capsized in Auckland soon after we got the boat, we were upright in three to four minutes and damage was slight.”

The capsize occurred at the top mark during the first quarter-final race against Luna Rossa Piranha. Emirates Team New Zealand was comfortably ahead. A problem with the leeward runner meant they could not ease the wing sheet as they rounded the mark. Able to go either up or down, the capsize was inevitable.

Coach Rod Davis, in a chase boat alongside the yacht, blogs his take on the incident.

‘The reason for the capsize was a problem with the leeward runner as we rounded the top mark. That meant that wing couldn’t go out far enough and in any kind of a puff, the boat would roll over.  We had all kinds of trouble righting the boat because the wing extension filled with water, a problem no one has come across as we were the first to capsize with it on.’

Rescue operations were going pretty much to plan, until we started breaking righting ropes. Then, when we got the boat up the first time, water/weight in the top of the wing made the boat roll back and sit with the bows pointing to the sky

So we had to re-capsize and start all over again. Three snapped tow lines and a pad eye later (the back of the chase boat looks like someone has beaten it with a chain) we had the cat back on her paws. And the boys sailed it home.

So what happens now? There are three flaps on the back of the wing. One is can be fixed overnight, one can be fixed but is not over night. And the last is totally destroyed.

The wing might look a little funny in the branding but we will be back on the water tomorrow.

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