Sir Ben Ainslie praised the work of his Land Rover BAR Crew after they topped the America’s Cup standings on day one in Oman.
With qualification for the series finale the ultimate goal for the Portsmouth-based side, Ainslie & Co knew a top day on the water was required from the latest races.
And they did just that on the Arabian Peninsula, with BAR taking two wins and a third-place finish from today’s three outings.
That gave them a four-point advantage going into tomorrow’s competition, with BAR on 28 points and second-placed Oracle Team USA on 24.
All six teams will be in action again on Super Sunday when double points will be on offer from another set of three races.
Until then, Team Principal and skipper Ainslie lauded his crew for putting them in a strong position at this stage of a weekend packed full of action.
’We had a few issues in the first race, the French team (Groupama) pushed us over the line,’ he said.
‘The guys did a great job sailing the boat smoothly, with some good boat handling, and we’ve just got to keep that ball rolling with double points racing tomorrow on Super Sunday.
‘We had good pace upwind and downwind.
‘Yesterday we worked out the light air sailing and the best angles to sail.
‘The tactical decisions from Giles on the race course really helped me point the boat in the right direction, we learnt a lot yesterday and it worked today.
‘On a day like today for spectators, it doesn’t seem like it but it’s almost harder than when it’s windy, with code zeros going up and down, utlimately it’s really a crew work day.
‘Ultimately, it’s team work in these conditions, you need good starts to go the right way, but the crew work has to be perfect.
‘If you miss a manoeuvre it costs you hundreds of metres and the crew did a really good job today.’
Going into day’s race, Land Rover BAR sat third in the overall standings.
They now sit second.