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Emirates Team New Zealand win MedCup.

Byline: Staff Report

Dubai: Emirates Team New Zealand emerged victorious in the Audi MedCup 2009 which concluded last weekend.

Sailing NZL380 on the Mediterranean, Emirates Team New Zealand won four of the five regattas with 128.5 points to finish ahead of Quantum (202.5 points), Artemis (208.5 points) and Matador (209.5 points).

The winning team will now set their sights on the first edition of the recently announced Louis Vuitton World Series Regatta to be held in Nice, France in November.

"We came here for a win and we finished the season feeling like we were sailing our best. The fifth regatta in Cartagena has been our best event. It couldn't have gone better than this," commented skipper Dean Barker.

"We have really enjoyed this year's Audi MedCup season and now we are going to do everything we can to come back next season. But now we have to switch our focus from fleet racing back to match racing and start preparing for Nice," Barker stated.

For the team's managing director Grant Dalton, the most telling aspect of the season has been the team's steady improvement race by race. "We wanted to improve incrementally as the season progressed. That was the objective. We weren't happy after the first regatta at Alicante. We should have done better.

"You could argue it was a blessing, but I don't think so ... we race to win, not to get better by losing," Dalton remarked.

"That was the key lesson from Alicante. We sailed well, then had a shocker, sailed well and then had a shocker. So we tried to lose the shockers.

"Reliability has always been a key issue for this team. Reliability is not hard to build into these boats, much easier than building it into an America's Cup boat," Dalton added.

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Publication:Gulf News (United Arab Emirates)
Date:Sep 23, 2009
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