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NZ off the pace at Youth America's Cup

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 20/06/2017
Team New Zealand in action at the Youth America's Cup. © Clive Mason/Getty Images Team New Zealand in action at the Youth America's Cup.

The New Zealand sailing team are seventh after a frustrating first day of the Youth America's Cup finals in Bermuda.

The defending champion Kiwis are near the tail of the eight-boat field after finishing seventh, sixth and second in the three opening races.

They were caught in traffic in a messy first race before copping penalties in each of the next two, recovering well in the last of them to hint at better to come.

British boat BAR Academy have shot clear on 28 points after collecting a win and a pair of second placings.

Light, shifty winds proved helpful for teams who claimed an early race advantage.

A forecast for more breeze on Thursday (NZT) was welcomed by NZL Sailing Team skipper Logan Dunning Beck.

"It was a tough day out there, it was really difficult to keep the boat going," he said.

"The starts were brutal, with eight boats on the start line. We were getting tangled in the pack, who had their claws out, and we just couldn't climb our way through."

The regatta, for sailors aged 18-24, is held in conjunction with the America's Cup.

It was won in 2013 by a New Zealand team skippered by Peter Burling, who is at the helm of their current bid for the Auld Mug.

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