SAN FRANCISCO – Emirates Team New Zealand nearly capsized in Race 8 of the America’s Cup, allowing defending champion Oracle Team USA to sail away to a 52-second victory Saturday on windy San Francisco Bay.
It was just the second victory of the series for the American syndicate, which has now erased the two-point penalty it was assessed in the biggest cheating scandal in the 162-year-history of the America’s Cup.
Team New Zealand leads 6-0.
The most heart-stopping moment in the regatta came as the Kiwis tried to tack on Oracle on the upwind third leg.
The 131-foot wing sail didn’t pop the right way and the 72-foot catamaran began to tip over, with its starboard hull hanging in the air for several seconds before splashing down.
Oracle skipper Jimmy Spithill did a great job of steering clear of Team New Zealand.