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U.S. SailGP Team: Gunning for Great Britain

1 AUGUST 2019News
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  • United States
Rome Kirby at the helm of the U.S. SailGP Team F50.

One point Between Young American Squad and Overall Podium

American flags waving a supercharged crowd of thousands cheering from shore, and the iconic Manhattan skyline looming overhead – the setting for the finale of New York SailGP over one month ago as the U.S. SailGP Team notched their first race win.

Fast forward to now, ten days out from the fourth event of the inaugural SailGP season, Cowes SailGP, and the young American squad is hungry for more wins.

“New York was just the starting point,” said helmsman Rome Kirby.

“Building a team from scratch, we always knew our hard work would begin paying off and the first race win at New York SailGP proved we are in contention with the top teams.”

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The team now turns its attention towards Cowes SailGP to advance in the standings, locked in a battle with the Great Britain SailGP Team for third place and a chance to challenge the leaders overall.

Currently, only one-point separates the British and American teams standing at 106 points and 105 points respectively in the overall leaderboard - a small margin that could ultimately be decided by a single race next week.

“You add up all the time spent training on the water and our team has only been sailing together for just over a month,” said Kirby.

“Certainly, the Australians and the Japanese are the top teams to beat, but they also have the pedigree of having raced together for years. Between ourselves and the British squad, I think we are the teams that have shown the most improvement this season and are increasing the competition at the top of the leaderboard.”

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Armed with world champions, Olympic hopefuls, and America’s Cup athletes, the American team will add to its roster the talents of wing trimmer Tom Johnson for the Cowes event, filling in for Riley Gibbs who recovered from his injury at New York SailGP and is currently competing at the Pan American Games as part of his Olympic bid.

The team plans to hit the water in their super charged F50 catamaran for the first time this Sunday, August 4, and take advantage of a favorable practice schedule that sees the team sailing for 5 of 6 days ahead of Cowes SailGP with racing commencing August 10 & 11.