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America's Cup: Emirates Team NZ stops testing, starts racing + Video    
Thu, 16 Aug 2012

Emirates Team NZ's skipper Dean Barker is acutely conscious of the fact that in only a few days he’ll be back on the water racing rather than testing.

And he will be at the helm of an AC45 rather than the AC72.

The America’s Cup World Series 2012-13 season kicks off on August 21. The sailing team left Auckland yesterday and will get straight into some practice time on the AC45.

'We’re in for a big change from where we have been these past few weeks. We have to forget the distractions of launching the AC72 and the first few sails….

'When we land at San Francisco the team will quickly switch mindsets and it will take a couple of days to get back into the rhythm of a regatta.'

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He said the team was keen to get sailing at San Francisco. 'We have never sailed the AC45 in San Francisco waters so there’s a lot of learning to be done.'

Barker has sailed previously on San Francisco Bay in monohulls, but he says 'It’s a rather different prospect charging around the bay in an AC45 rather than a Farr 40.

'We go to San Francisco with the expectation of a better performance than at Newport in June. We were far from happy with Newport; we have spent time debriefing that and now we’re ready to get back into AC45 racing.

'In the end the America’s Cup is all about racing and we need a fast boat. The difficult thing is to get the balance right on developing the AC72 and racing the AC45.'

by Sail-World

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