Australia has once again proved themselves the team to beat after triumphing over Great Britain and newcomer Canada in the Grand Final of the Bermuda Sail Grand Prix presented by Hamilton Princess.
The two-time defending champions swept to victory over Ben Ainslie’s Great Britain and Phil Robertson’s Canada in a faultless final race following consistent performances in all five fleet races.
A lethargic start from Great Britain only gifted further momentum to Australia and Canada, who blasted over the start line. Leading from the get-go, Slingsby proved himself in a match race mood, tacking in tandem with Canada and blocking their wind.
Great Britain meanwhile sailed consistently on the opposite side of the course, seeking out more wind and making big gains. But with flight controller Jason Waterhouse flying the boat higher, Australia only extended their lead out front, providing no opportunities for Canada or Great Britain to take the lead.
Australia sailed fast and clean, picking up a 200m lead on Great Britain on the final leg and sweeping to a seemingly effortless victory.
“I think it’s really coming through confidence,” said a jubilant Slingsby on the finish line. “We’re turning into a bit of a specialist in the three boat match.”
Despite coming third, it was a confident debut from the Canadian team who drew on the experience of Driver Phil Robertson and SailGP veteran Chris Draper to secure a race win and consistent racing across all five fleet races.
Meanwhile Ainslie’s Great Britain secured two wins on the first day of the racing and now sits in second place in the overall leaderboard.
As for the rest of the fleet, it was a difficult weekend for Quentin Delapierre’s French team, who were handed the second black flag in SailGP history after a near collision with Great Britain on the starting line of the race 5. New Zealand too had an inconsistent performance, picking up a race win in the fifth race followed by a languid seventh place finish in the final fleet race, leaving them sixth overall with 29 points.