Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli yesterday beat Britain’s Ineos team in the eighth and final race of the Prada Cup in Hauraki Bay, New Zealand. Just as they did 20 years ago, the Italians will continue to challenge the defender, New Zealand’s Emirates Airline team, for the America’s Cup.
Luna Rossa’s win on Sunday brought a total of seven wins and one defeat against the British team. Analysts said the Italians’ boat was faster in medium light conditions in both races yesterday.
The AC75 monocoque vehicles used by the two teams – which have been heavily modified by America’s Cup rules – are the fastest and most extreme since the launch of the Copa America in 1851. Some analysts consider design and technology so far beyond sailing that they should be called the last sport. The American Magic team saw their boat reach 52.2 knots (60.07 mph) during the semi-finals, despite being eliminated by Luna Rossa earlier this month. The world speed record was set by the Traimaran at 54.10 knots (62.25 mph), so the Americans were very close.
Due to their radical design, AC boats are capable of 40 knots (46.03 mph) in just 17 knots of wind. This kind of performance was only unheard of for three years. For sailors on the boat, it’s like having their heads out of the window while driving at 50 mph. It is also equivalent to a wind gust of 10 magnitude.
This is the second time that Luna Rossa has become a contestant in the 170-year-old Copa America. The British team continues its 170-year streak of defeats against Great Britain. British sailboats competed for the first time in America’s 1st Cup against a 101-foot sailboat United States of America In 1851, he won the race easily and raised £ 100. Queen Victoria, who was watching the race, asked who was the second, and the answer came: “Your Majesty, there are no seconds.”
Despite successive attempts by Britain since then, no British team has ever won. But Ineos’ four-year campaign was the closest.
“My initial thoughts are congratulations to Luna Rossi,” said Ineos captain Ben Ainsley after the event. “They raced great, got the best deal in a wide range of circumstances and deserved to win. We fought hard and fought back, even in the last race, so I couldn’t be more proud of the team.”
In twelve days, the New Zealand national team will face Emirates Cup defender Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli in Hauraki Bay to decide who will win the oldest cup in international sport. The event will begin on March 6 and will run until March 15th. The first team to win seven matches in 13 consecutive matches will win the Copa America.