America's Cup: Oracle Team America make New Zealand wait

Last Updated: 21/09/13 10:53am

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A look at the action from Day 10 of the 34th Americas Cup.

Sky Bet

Sir Ben Ainslie and Oracle Team USA remain alive in the America's Cup after victory in Race 13 in San Francisco.

New Zealand still need just one more victory to win the Cup outright but the defending champions cut the gap to 8-3 with the only result possible on Friday.

In the first race the Kiwis were a long way ahead of Team America but the frustatingly light winds meant they could not get to the finish line within the 40 minutes permitted.

That was a huge let-off for Ainslie and his team-mates as they had been soundly beaten in the race, only to be saved by Mother Nature.

The USA must still win six more races in a row to keep New Zealand from the one victory it needs to wrest yachting's coveted Cup from the hands of Oracle team owner Larry Ellison.

"We were obviously staring down the barrel of defeat there," said tactician Ainslie.

Oracle skipper Jimmy Spithill said: "It was really a great day. Sometimes things go your way, and we're going to take it."

"It's a shame really," said Ainslie's New Zealand counterpart Ray Davies. "But the wind limit is the wind limit; the time limit is the time limit, and you just have to deal with it."

New Zealand skipper Dean Barker described the day as "frustrating," adding "we know we can win this thing."

In the race that was completed, the Kiwis beat the USA over the starting line and rounded the first mark a few seconds ahead of Oracle.

But the defending champions snatched the lead back in a cross-over that resulted in New Zealand being tagged with a penalty.

Oracle dodged to avoid colliding with New Zealand but jumped ahead and grabbed onto a lead that grew through the pivotal upwind third leg of the race.

The USA remained in control of the race and crossed the finish a minute and 24 seconds ahead of the Kiwis.

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