Emirates Team New Zealand won the first race of the Louis Vuitton Cup – despite two of their crew being washed overboard.
They clocked a time of 31m 03s for the 9.95-nautical mile course in San Francisco Bay, to beat Italy’s Team Luna Rossa.
Kiwi team members Chris Ward and Rob Wadell were thrown overboard when the front of the hulls dipped under water on a sharp turn.
They were pulled from the bay by a rescue boat as their crew went on to victory
“It’s this sort of racing, the boats are incredibly powerful, you see how quickly the speed rockets up as you make the turn,” New Zealand captain Dean Barker said afterwards.
“I’m sure there’s a few things we could have done a bit better.”
The Italian team had fixed a damaged daggerboard to get to the start line, but they dropped out seconds after the start of the race.
The winner of the best of 13 cup will earn the right to take part in the America’s Cup in September.