America’s Cup 2021: Media reacts to day one of Prada Cup semifinals

A near-perfect day for Luna Rossa on Friday has put the Italians two wins – and potentially one day – away from securing a spot in the Prada Cup finals.

On the other hand, American Magic have plenty to do to avoid packing their bags early.

Here’s how media around the world reacted to day one of the Prada Cup semifinals.

Do or Die

The Rule69blog wrote that Luna Rossa “came out of the traps absolutely smoking” on day one.

“It was their [best] performance to date and the first two clean race wins of the summer, laying down a serious marker of intent as worlds collided, as they often don’t with Italian challenges, and everything came together beautifully.

“The Prada boys will just take full advantage and sail off to the red moon horizon with ease.”

Cold, hard reality

Sailing World credited Luna Rossa’s dominance in the breeze.

“If American Magic had been dreaming of a comeback story to rival some of the best in sport then today, the first day of racing in the Prada Cup semifinal, saw those dreams met with a cold, hard reality.”

Two losses from elimination

Popular sailing blog Scuttlebutt reaffirmed what would’ve been a disappointing day for American Magic.

“When American Magic skipper Terry Hutchinson faced his team following their day of damage on January 16, he was positive and inspirational. He encouraged the team to do what they have to do to get it down ‘because it’s going to make for one hell of a story’.

“It was all systems go today, but the Italians were notably better in both races … Whether it was their smaller mainsail choice, called the bat-wing, or rust, or other technical issues, this was not the story Hutchinson hoped for, being two losses away from elimination.”

Luna Rossa flawless, Americans in trouble

Italian news service LiveMedia24 heaped praise on Luna Rossa’s near-perfect day.

“Luna Rossa didn’t really do anything wrong today; two races conducted without the slightest error, in conditions that are admittedly not congenial … Luna Rossa , with two victories, can put an end to this semifinal; and on paper the weather conditions will be very different. Weak winds are expected on the race course winds that theoretically should favour the Italian hull.”

Pragmatism intruded

Although crediting Patriot’s record speeds, The Associated Press didn’t sugarcoat the Americans’ many issues.

“High winds and harsh reality blew away American Magic’s hope of a fairytale return to the America’s Cup challenger series when Italy’s Luna Rossa won both races Friday on the first day of the best-of-seven semifinals.

“American Magic seems to have particular control problems with its small rudder and when the mainsail is eased and it comes to the top mark powered up.”

Heading into the Cup racing?

• Give yourself plenty of time and think about catching a ferry, train or bus to watch the Cup.
• Make sure your AT HOP card is in your pocket. It’s the best way to ride.
• Don’t forget to scan QR codes with the NZ COVID Tracer app when on public transport and entering the America’s Cup Village.
• For more ways to enjoy race day, visit at.govt.nz/americascup.

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