Canada driver Phil Robertson has unpacked the team’s second place finish in New York after New Zealand swept to victory in the three-boat Final.

Robertson’s Canadian team picked up solid 4-2-1-4 race results to win fleet racing on points and proceed into the winner-takes-all showdown against Emirates GBR and New Zealand.

In the pre-start, SailGP’s pole predictor, which highlights the team with the best start line positioning, alternated between the Canadians and Kiwis.

But ultimately it was the Kiwis which secured the pin end of the line after Robertson decided against attacking their position.

“I was in a position to attack the Kiwis and I actually decided not to, which is probably slightly out of character,” Robertson said after racing. “I thought we could have a crack at pushing over them.”

Despite recording the highest starting speed of the three teams (58.8 km/h), the Canadians made a small mistake as the race began - dropping a bow into the water which cost them speed.

“We put the boat on the absolute limit and washed the rudder out,” he explained. “When that happens, the boat just slides sideways and drops the windward hull in.”

Canada, New Zealand and Emirates Great Britain battled it out for victory in the winner-takes-all Final

He admitted the team ‘went too far’ in pursuit of the Kiwis’ stellar start. “The Kiwis did well - you can’t beat a team that doesn’t make mistakes,” he said.

Despite missing out on the event win, Robertson said he was ‘proud’ of the team’s second place finish. “It would have been nice to win in New York but second’s still a great result.”

Season 4 // Canada underway on first day of racing in New York

Following New York, Canada climbed to 5th on the overall Season 4 leaderboard - nine points behind Spain in third. He admitted the results are ‘probably a little bit too late’ to make it into San Francisco’s $2 million three-boat Grand Final next month, but remained hopeful for a leaderboard shake-up in fleet racing.

“It’s sport - you can never underestimate what can go wrong,” he said. “There’s two teams in front of us for that third spot and who knows? Maybe they come together.”

The Season 4 Grand Final in San Francisco takes place on July 13/14.


2024/25
Season
Starts November

Season 4 Grand Final