Season 3 was packed with all the near misses, tense moments and close crosses fans expect from SailGP’s close to shore, exhilarating racing. From Australia’s dramatic nosedive on the finish line of Saint Tropez to Emirates GBR hitting the bottom in Copenhagen, we round up the most dramatic moments from Season 3’s fast and furious 11-event circuit.
France’s Black Flag
France got Season 3 off to an explosive start in Bermuda, picking up a Black Flag on the start line of the fourth fleet race. The incident saw Quentin Delapierre’s crew approach the start line at speed and attempt to barge Emirates GBR aside. The British boat was forced to swerve and avoid a collision and the French were promptly disqualified from the race
Emirates GBR’s painful penalty in Plymouth
Next up is the dramatic penalty that barred Emirates GBR from a place in the Final of their home event in Plymouth. The British boat executed a close cross with Tom Slingsby’s Australia and was just 200m from the finish line when the penalty was announced, forcing the Brits to cross the finish line behind the Aussies. The decision meant the third place in the Final was handed instead to Nicolai Sehested’s Denmark.
Emirates GBR running aground in Copenhagen
Disaster struck Emirates GBR yet again at the next event in Copenhagen when the British F50 hit the bottom of the sea bed while training for race weekend. The boat sustained extensive damage, ruled the team out of competing in Copenhagen and meant the British picked up zero points for the entire event.
Australia’s dramatic nosedive in Saint Tropez
The already established rivalry between Tom Slingsby’s Australia and Peter Burling’s New Zealand stepped up a notch in Saint Tropez when aggressive match racing tactics from the Kiwis saw the Aussies nosedive just meters from the finish line. The floundering Australian F50 was promptly overtaken by Emirates GBR, the U.S., and Spain, leaving Australia to finish fifth, instead of second.
France’s neck and neck event win in Cadiz
Non-stop drama unfolded in the Bay of Cádiz when Quentin Delapierre marked his first anniversary as France driver by beating the United States in a tense last-minute battle to seal his first event win by a margin of three seconds. The showdown marked one of the closest Finals in SailGP history and marked a turning point for the young French team.
Canada nearly hits Australia in San Francisco fleet racing
Disaster almost struck the Australian crew in San Francisco when Phil Robertson’s Canadian crew came within meters of hitting the gold and green F50. The incident, which could have ruled the Aussies out of competing in the winner-takes-all Grand Final, luckily saw both boats sail away unscathed.
The United States collides with Denmark in San Francisco
The Season 3 showdown in San Francisco was packed with tense moments and close crosses and even saw the United States collide with Denmark on the start line of the fourth fleet race. The incident, which saw the United States attempt to squeeze into a narrow gap on the start line, resulted in the Americans being docked eight event points and four points from their overall season score.