- Tom Slingsby’s Australia SailGP Team started season 3 as they finished season 2 . . . Winners!
The Aussie team dominated the podium race of the Bermuda Sail Grand Prix presented by Hamilton Princess to claim the opening title of the season.
Ben Ainslie and the British team narrowly missed out on back to back Bermuda titles to finish the weekend as runners-up, with Phil Robertson-led Canada SailGP Team finishingin third place.
After an indifferent day one performance, Australia once again delivered when it mattered, winning the second race of day two and then storming to victory in the final well ahead of Canada and Great Britain.
Ainslie had looked to be heading for a second Bermuda win after the British team took the overall lead after the first race of day 2 – Race 4 – with Australia battling to join them in three-boat final.
Race 5 was a win for Slingsby, putting the Aussie team top of the table as they finally showed their normal form.
The British team were in second and newbies, Canada with Phil Robertson showing just why he was recruited to bring the new franchise up to the mark.
With a winner-takes-all final it was Slingsby who took Australia off the line in pole position holding off the Canada, while the British were late to the start line and were playing catch-up the whole race.
While Australia led round every mark for a straight forward win, the Brits managed to overtake Canada to take second, 12 seconds down on the overall Bermuda event winner.
Reflecting on the final race Ainslie said: “The final race was difficult for us as we had a bad start. We had an approach that we wanted to come in a little bit late, gybe on the foil and then go over the line.”
“Unfortunately, we messed up the gybe and killed too much and couldn’t get to the line. After that start we had to get loose to give us a chance of moving back up the places. We were able to split and separate and move back past Canada and towards Australia.”
SailGP Season 3 resumes in the United States Sail Grand Prix in the ‘windy city’, Chicago, from 18-19 June.