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5 May 2007, 06:22 pm
Desafío Español Takes Two
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Louis Vuitton Cup 2007
Valencia, Spain

On Saturday, the home team, Desafío Español 2007, took advantage of an earlier Jury ruling which ordered a re-sail of its match against Mascalzone Latino - Capitalia Team. The Spanish team won its second come-from-behind match of the day, beating Mascalzone Latino in the re-sail, following a win over Shosholoza in their Flight 7 contest.

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With the two wins, Desafío Español earns four points, extending its lead for a critical top four position on the leaderboard to five points over the idle Victory Challenge. Only the top four challengers at the conclusion of Round Robin Two advance to the Semi Finals.

There were excellent sea breeze conditions on the waters off Valencia for the second consecutive day, with more of the same forecast for Sunday.

Flight 7

The closest match of Flight 7 was between Desafío Español and Shosholoza. After an aggressive pre-start between Karol JABLONSKI (POL) and Paolo CIAN (ITA), both boats rolled off the middle of the line with Shosholoza very close to the starboard hip of ESP 97. A long duel followed up the first leg, but by the time they reached the top of the course there was still little separating the two boats. As they approached the port layline, JABLONSKI luffed the South African boat, but it was RSA 83 who rolled around the windward mark 5 seconds ahead.

The decisive move came at the first gybe, when superior boat handling put the Spanish on to the breeze of the slower-gybing South Africans. Gradually the Spanish rolled over the top into a controlling position which they maintained and extended to 47 seconds by the finish.

James SPITHILL (AUS) steered Luna Rossa aggressively in the pre-start and managed to get a penalty against +39 Challenge. SPITHILL then stuck Iain PERCY (GBR) up by the Race Committee boat and as +39 fought to find room and acceleration, ITA 94 moved away nicely and sailed to an easy victory.

Jesper BANK (DEN) and United Internet Team Germany made the better start against Emirates Team New Zealand as GER 89 came off the pin end of the line at speed, but the Kiwis were just too fast as the Germans never managed to capitalise on that early advantage.

BMW ORACLE Racing made a perfect pin-end start against Areva Challenge and the Americans raced away to victory, consolidating their position at the top of the leaderboard with Luna Rossa. Mascalzone Latino - Capitalia Team executed a great pre-start against China Team, bouncing a downspeed CHN 95 off towards the Race Committee boat, and sealing the race from there.

Flight 4 - Re-sail

In the rematch following the protest between these teams two days ago, Mascalzone Latino - Capitalia Team wanted the right of the start line, and Desafío Español seemed surprisingly willing to hand it to them. When Jes GRAM-HANSEN (DEN) took the black boat across the line at speed, with the Spanish two seconds back, it handed an immediate advantage to the Italians.

A tacking duel ensued, but always the advantage with Mascalzone. However, the Spanish kept it tight and rounded the top mark less than one boat length behind. Then, in an absolute carbon copy of the Spanish team's earlier match against Shosholoza, the green boat rolled down on a deeper line, ready to pounce on a Mascalzone gybe. True enough, when the simultaneous gybe came, ESP 97 seized the initiative and stole the wind and soon after the lead.

A poor gybe from Mascalzone further down the run sealed their fate as the Spanish led through the leeward gate and consolidated on the final lap for an important victory.

Louis Vuitton Cup - Saturday's Matches

Flight 7

1. Mascalzone Latino-Capitalia Team beat China Team . 2:22
2. Desafío Español 2007 beat Team Shosholoza. 0:47
3. Emirates Team New Zealand beat United Internet Team Germany . 2:07
4. BMW ORACLE Racing beat Areva Challenge . 1:28
5. Luna Rossa Challenge beat +39 Challenge. 1:04

Bye - Victory Challenge

Flight 4 - Re-sail

1. Desafío Español 2007 beat Mascalzone Latino-Capitalia. 0:35

Louis Vuitton Cup - Round Robin Two - Leaderboard
Pos Team Points - End of RR1 Matches Sailed RR2 Matches Won RR2 Pts
1 BMW ORACLE Racing (USA 98) 21 6 5 31
1 Luna Rossa Challenge (ITA 94) 19 7 6 31
3 Emirates Team New Zealand (NZL 92) 18 6 6 30
4 Desafío Español 2007 (ESP 97) 17 6 5 27
5 Victory Challenge (SWE 96) 14 6 4 22
6 Mascalzone Latino-Capitalia (ITA 99) 14 6 3 20
7 Team Shosholoza (RSA 83) 12 7 2 16
8 Areva Challenge (FRA 93) 9 6 2 13
9 +39 Challenge (ITA 85) 6 6 0 6
10 United Internet Team Germany (GER 89) 3 7 1 5
11 China Team (CHN 95) 1 7 1 3

The America's Cup Match and Challenger/Defender Series are designated as ISAF Special Events. For more information on the America's Cup, the Louis Vuttion Acts and the teams competing, visit the official America's Cup website - www.americascup.com.

For a complete list of all the news about the America's Cup 2007 CLICK HERE.
ACM 2007 (As Amended By ISAF). Image, Desafio Espanol got the better of Mascalzone in their re-sail:© ACM 2007/Photo:Carlo Borlenghi
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