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America's Cup

Oracle team USA capsize ACC50

Oracle team USA capsized its new America’s Cup Class boat during training on Bermuda’s Great Sound on Saturday.

No crew members were injured and early indications are that damage to the boat is limited.

Spithill described Saturday’s incident as a ‘soft’ capsize, with the boat going over sideways relatively slowly as opposed to when the bows dig in at speed.

This would have helped to limit the damage, if not the frustration.

The team expects to be sailing on Monday, when the next official practice ‘race period’ resumes using their new America’s Cup Class boats.

“We flipped over our new America’s Cup Class boat,” said skipper Jimmy Spithill at dockside about an hour after the capsize.

“All the guys are good. We went straight into our righting procedure, pulled the boat up, and brought it back to the dock,” he said.

“Now, we have to go through process of checking the boat out."

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"The top of the wing has some flap damage, but we have the team to get us back out on the water and we’ll be back out to finish off this race period with the rest of the teams.”

“It is frustrating,” he admitted. “But the fact is, this is a real possibility in these boats. We have to go back through and figure out what led to it. But that’s all part of the learning process. It’s usually from these sorts of incidents where you learn the most.”

Speaking to journalists from the Bermuda newspaper The Royal Gazette, Spithill said -

“We were doing starting practice and bailed out of a bear away and unfortunately went over,”

“When we started to go and I knew we couldn’t recover. I just said ‘hold on boys, we’re going over’, and it was a really soft landing."

“The big sail just captures the air between the sail and the water like a pillow.”

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In another America's Cup incident, two Bermuda Red Bull Youth America’s Cup sailors were taken to hospital following a training mishap in the Great Sound Saturday.

The AC45F catamaran they were sailing suffered no damage and the two crew were released on Saturday afternoon with no major issues.

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