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The Desafío Español 2007 qualifies for the semifinals!

09/05/2007

On May 7th, Desafío Español 2007 qualified for the semifinals of the Louis Vuitton Cup.  For the first time in the history of the America’s Cup a  Spanish team has qualified among the four finalists of the most prestigious competition in the world.

Desafío Español 2007 today faced the North American team BMW-Oracle, whom they managed to defeat in the first Round Robin.  At the start, the North Americans opted for the right side of the course whilst the Spanish departed along the left.  In the first part of the course the North American’s side proved to be favourable and they soon led by a length.  The Spanish boat turned to the right to mark their opponent but by mid-way down the leg BMW-Oracle’s lead had increased.  Desafío Español 2007 could not recover any ground and the North American team increased their lead, arriving at the top marker with an advantage of 46 seconds over the Spanish team.

On the downwind leg, the green boat followed in the wake of their rival who maintained the difference between them throughout the leg, although the Spaniards managed to gain on them slightly towards the end of the beat.  In the second upwind leg, crossing to the left, Desafío Español 2007 did not manage to recover any ground and the North Americans stretched their lead to over a minute.  The distance was insurmountable for the Spaniards on the last leg and although they recovered slightly on the last part they finally crossed the finishing line 55 seconds behind their opponent.

Desafío Español 2007 has qualified for the semifinals of the Louis Vuitton Cup mathematically after Victory Challenge were defeated by Emirates Team New Zealand.  The defeat of the Swedish team was one of the options open for the Spanish team to qualify for the next round other than them winning the two regattas that remained for them.

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