Swedish Team Loses First America’s Cup Race Since Fatal Accident

A Sweden-based sailing team this week lost its first two races in the America’s Cup regatta since the death of one of its crewmembers during a practice run earlier this year.

Artemis Racing lost the opening race of the Louis Vuitton Cup semifinals on Tuesday, coming in about two minutes behind its Italian opponent, Luna Rossa Challenge.

Today, Artemis lost again to the Italian team.

The two teams are competing in a best-of-seven series to determine who will face Emirates Team New Zealand in the finals of the challenger series, which will decide who will go up against Oracle Team USA in the America’s Cup Finals in September.

On May 9, Artemis lost sailor Andrew “Bart” Simpson, who died after the team’s boat capsized during a practice run out on the Bay.

The accident broke apart one of the team’s two 72-foot yachts, forcing Artemis to scramble to get its second boat in shape for racing.

Tuesday’s race came only about a week after the team took the new boat out on the Bay for the first time, according to race officials.

“To think that one week after launching we’d be sailing around the racecourse in 20 knots is beyond my wildest imagination,” team skipper Iain Percy said in a statement.

More information about the teams and race schedule can be found online at www.americascup.com.

Dan McMenamin, Bay City News

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