When the Shosholoz crossed the finish line in front of Malmö on Friday at 1:45 p.m., there was great applause. There was even plenty of applause from the Alinghi support boat. The South African America’s Cup campaign scored its first victory in its 41st race in the Louis Vuitton Cups.
With a lead of 1:20 minutes, the Shosholozdas favored Swedish Team Victory Challenge clearly distanced. In the evening the corks will probably pop in the team base. “Now we're really hungry,” said Marcello Burricks.
Tim Kröger from Hamburg, who sails for the team as boat captain and aft grinder, said: “We were happy that we worked our way out of the very difficult situation. Above all, we felt incredible relief at the finish. When you have to deal with such a long series of defeats, the first point tastes particularly good."
New helmsman, new luck? Since Chris Law took the helm from Ian Ainslie at the start of Act 6 in Malmö, things have been better at the start. Now the Englishman, with Ainslie as tactician in the afterguard, had a big lead right from the start, which the crew could not take away until the finish line.
The South Africans still sail with a mast borrowed from Alinghi, but the sails that have now been specially tailored to it seem to have benefited the boat speed.
Shortly before take-off, a change had to be made on the Shosholoz. Midbow Golden Mgedez injured his shoulder during the mast repair and was replaced by Ashton Sampson. "I'm not sad that I wasn't there because that's a really great story," said Mgedeza.
Despite the progress in material handling, Team Germany had to admit defeat in its third match race compared to yesterday's defeats. In the duel with the LunRos, the German representative kept up the first half of the duel well, but in the end he crossed the finish line one minute and 40 seconds behind.
There could be a German victory in the second race of the day. Team Germany meets the Chinese campaign. The Shosholo hits the Italians from +39.
LunRossChallenge (IT74) beats United Internet Team Germany (GER72) 1:40 Emirates Team New Zealand (NZL82) beats Desafio Espanol (ESP67) 0:33Mascalzone Latino-CapitaliTeam (IT77) beats ChinTeam (CHN 69) 1:09Alinghi (SUI 75) beats +39 Challenge (IT59) 1:45BMW Oracle Racing (US76) beats K-Challenge (FR60) 1:12Team Shosholoz (RS83) beats Victory Challenge (SWE 73) 1:20