The second of Season 4’s three back-to-back European events got underway in the city of Taranto.

Season 4 // Australia, Emirates GBR, France and Denmark underway on first day of racing in Taranto

With New Zealand unable to race due to equipment damage sustained in Saint-Tropez, the reduced 9-F50 fleet took to the water to do battle across two days of extreme conditions.

Season 4 // Fleet underway in first day of racing in Taranto

Gusts of up to 45 km/h challenged crews on the first day of racing, but the experience of Australia and Emirates GBR's long-established crews shone through.

Season 4 // Australia fly too high on first day of racing in Taranto

Australia converted two impressive starts into race wins, but an OCS penalty in the third fleet race sent the Flying Roos to the back of the pack.

Season 4 // ROCKWOOL DEN flies around the mark on day one of the Italy Sail Grand Prix in Taranto

This allowed Nicolai Sehested’s ROCKWOOL Denmark to stretch away from the fleet, crossing the finish line with an impressive lead.

Emirates GBR celebrated victory at the ROCKWOOL Italy Sail Grand Prix | Taranto

But Emirates GBR stayed consistent throughout the first day of racing and headed into the second day of racing at the top of the leaderboard, tied on points with Australia.

Season 4 // United States crashes down on the first day of racing in Taranto

There was plenty of drama on the first day of racing too, with the United States suffering a shocking nosedive in the third fleet race that resulted in the injury of flight controller Hans Henken.

Season 4 // United States underway on day one of Taranto

But as the second day of racing dawned, with drastically different light wind conditions, the U.S. battled back to pick up a 3rd place and 1st place finish in the remaining two fleet races.

Season 4 // France and the United States on day two of Taranto

This pushed France, which had an impressive first day of racing, out of the three boat Final by the slimmest of margins, and saw the U.S. take their place alongside Emirates GBR and Australia.


But dying wind conditions scuppered the three-boat showdown, which was terminated before any boat could reach Gate 3. This meant the results from fleet racing stood for the overall event - handing the another win to Emirates GBR.

Season 4 // Emirates GBR celebrate with champagne on board GBR F50

Fans don’t have long to wait until the F50 fleet meet again - the Spain Sail Grand Prix | Andalucía Cádiz takes place on October 14-15.