America's Cup: Sir Ben Ainslie's assistance could not help Oracle Team USA
Last Updated: September 13, 2013 2:25pm
Team New Zealand were in charge once again
Even Britain's Sir Ben Ainslie proved unable to help Oracle Team USA in their America's Cup battle with Emirates Team New Zealand in San Francisco on Thursday.
Team New Zealand beat the defending champions in both of the day's races to move closer to taking the Cup down under for the second time in 18 years.
Ainslie, the most successful sailor in Olympic history, was drafted in on Thursday to replace tactician John Kostecki, as Oracle attempted to revive their fortunes.
But the Kiwis continued their fine form instead and now lead by 6 to minus-1, the Oracle team having been docked two points in a pre-regatta cheating scandal.
Thursday featured races six and seven of the series and the Kiwis came from behind to win the sixth race.
Oracle hit the start with precision, grabbing a lead that grew from the first to second marks, but New Zealand seized control on the third leg.
New Zealand had a lead of around 200m at the third marker and crossed the line 47 seconds ahead.
And race seven produced a similar result, New Zealand crossing the finish with a lead of one minute and six seconds.
New Zealand skipper Dean Barker said: "I'm very happy with the day. We could improve downwind, but we are pretty happy with the overall package."
Oracle skipper Jimmy Spithill insists his team will continue to battle on.
"We cannot give up," he said. "We'll keep fighting all the way to the end. I'm still convinced we can win races."