Burling, Kiwis beat Oracle third time in America's Cup

How technology helped America's Cup hit mainstream

The first race in the contest to win the world's oldest sporting trophy was fought out on Bermuda's Great Sound by Oracle Team USA, skippered by Jimmy Spithill and Emirates Team New Zealand, helmed by Peter Burling.

Spithill was over the starting line early, forcing him to drop two boat lengths behind to clear the penalty.

But the Kiwis later came off their foils during a hard maneuver and slowed dramatically in the tough conditions, losing half their lead.

Although they won twice, by 30 seconds and 1 minute, 28 seconds, the Kiwis lead just 1-0. Because Oracle won the qualifiers, the challenger started the 35th America's Cup match with a negative point.

The two wins gave New Zealand a psychological boost as the Kiwis try to win the "Auld Mug" back after losing to Oracle in San Francisco in 2013.

Emirates Team New Zealand jumped out with two wins but Burling was not ready to celebrate.

Although they have won three races, the Kiwis lead Oracle 2-0.

Now, the teams will renew hostilities with the oldest trophy in global sport on the line once again.

'I definitely think this bonus point advantage is going to be important, ' Spithill said.

"We just missed getting the board down, we had to slow down and get the board in position, then we were ready to go again", reflected trimmer Blair Tuke.

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However, a six-day break until race five and six on Sunday (NZT) will allow Team USA to make changes to a defence which is teetering.

"We've got to get faster, that's obvious".

"We thought we were coming back when we wanted to but as it turned out we were wrong, it is something we will have to go back and look at".

Emirates Team New Zealand faces Oracle Team USA in the America's Cup sailing m.

As both boats headed towards the turn the gap was down to just over three seconds, and it looked like the USA team might record their first win of the America's Cup Match, presented by Louis Vuitton, but it was not to be.

But Burling is taking nothing for granted after the United States of America fought back from 8-1 down to take the famous old trophy when the boats last clashed in San Francisco four years ago.

Team New Zealand crushed Oracle in the second race of the day by more than a minute.

The always-crafty Kiwis are using a "cyclor" grinding system.

Oracle made huge gains up the fifth leg and were within a couple of metres rounding the top mark, but immediately fell off their foils on a gybe and lost several hundred metres in the space of a few seconds.

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