Wednesday was a day for the sailing history books, with Oracle Team
USA winning its eighth straight race in the America's Cup Finals to triumph
over challenger Emirates Team New Zealand.
When the 19th race of the finals began at 1:15 p.m., Oracle
and New Zealand were tied 8-8.
Oracle had trailed by a margin of 8-1 last week, but its surprise
winning streak had tied up the regatta and forced today's winner-take-all
Either team needed nine points to win the cup.
The Oracle team started the finals with a two-point deficit after
being penalized for illegal boat modifications during earlier exhibition
An awards ceremony is planned at America's Cup Park at Piers 27/29 Wednesday afternoon, with San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee and former mayor and current
Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom expected to attend.
As of 11 a.m., the wind was forecast to be stronger than 20 knots
at the 1:15 p.m. start time, race officials said. The race would have been
postponed or canceled if the wind had reached 24.4 knots, or about 28 mph.
There have been only two other neck-and-neck races in the 162-year
history of the America's Cup, in 1920 and 1983, according to race officials.