Germany driver Erik Heil has dissected the team’s SailGP racing debut in Chicago, revealing his ‘first priority’ was to get ‘around the racecourse safely’.

But the Germans did much more than that, spending much of the day battling amongst the mid-fleet and even reaching fourth position in the first race.

Despite this, the Germans struggled to hold onto their positions and dropped back into the fleet to pick up an 8-8-7 racing record, and eighth overall. But they still finished the day ahead of Switzerland and home team the United States driven by SailGP veteran Jimmy Spithill - a feat all the more impressive considering the team’s limited training time and cancellation of practice racing.

Season 4 // United States Sail Grand Prix Chicago // Erik Heil in press conference

Speaking after racing, Heil said he was ‘super happy’ with the team’s debut performance, especially considering the amount of ‘incidents around the racecourse’.

“We have priorities and priority number one was going safe around the racecourse - which we managed somehow,” he said.

The second priority was the proper execution of maneuvers which, Heil said, ‘was pretty much ok’.

Season 4 // United States Sail Grand Prix Chicago // Close up of Germany F50 on Day 1

After getting their feet under the table in the first two fleet races, Heil said the team showed noticeable improvement in the third race of the day.

“In the last race, we got it a little bit better and had the chance to keep the line - it was pretty cool to see that we are improving.

Racing resumes at 4pm CDT on Saturday, June 17. Please CLICK HERE for a full live stream of the Race Day 2 action, or visit our How to Watch page for broadcast information for your region.