SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Emirates Team New Zealand routed Italy’s Luna Rossa by the biggest margin yet in the America’s Cup challenger trials and clinched the right to advance to the Louis Vuitton Cup finals.
The Kiwis took a 7-3 lead over Luna Rossa, which fell farther behind at each turning mark on San Francisco Bay.
The Kiwis finished 7 minutes, 14 seconds ahead of the Italians, who officially will be ruled a did not finish because they weren’t within 5 minutes of the winners.
One of the rudders on the Italian catamaran sank into the mud as it was launched in low tide before the race. The Italians had to remove the rudder and repair it.
The Louis Vuitton Cup winner will advance to face defending champion Oracle Team USA in the 34th America’s Cup match starting Sept. 7.
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