Please select your home edition
Edition
Hyde Sails 2022 One Design LEADERBOARD

Big umpire call leads to Emirates GBR missing the podium final in Dubai

by Emirates GBR SailGP Team 10 Dec 2023 16:33 UTC 9-10 December 2023
Emirates Great Britain SailGP Team are disqualified after a close encounter with the USA SailGP Team as the fleet cross the start line on Race Day 2 of the Emirates Sail Grand Prix presented by P&O Marinas in Dubai, United Arab Emirates © Bob Martin for SailGP

Sir Ben Ainslie said his Emirates Great Britain SailGP Team had a "tough end" to the Emirates Dubai SailGP Presented by P&O Marinas after being disqualified from the last fleet race of the event.

After ending Day 1 and starting Day 2 with race wins, Emirates GBR was looking likely to take a spot in the three-boat Event Final, but a protest from United States at the start of the second race of Day 2 made that impossible. The US Team protested that Emirates GBR had not given them enough room at the line, with Race Management agreeing and disqualifying Ainslie's crew.

Race Day 2 had started so well for Emirates GBR, with the Team getting up on the foils despite the light wind and leading the fleet just after crossing the start line. Due to the light air, all 10 teams had chosen to sail with the 29m wing, which had been out of action since the dramatic collapse of it on New Zealand's F50 foiling racing boat at the Saint-Tropez SailGP in September.

With crew size being reduced to five people on-board from six due to the conditions, Emirates GBR Strategist Hannah Mills OBE was back on the grinding handles. As well as joining Grinder Nick Hutton on the handles, Hannah was also maintaining her Strategist role and feeding vital information to Ainslie. Strategy was crucial when New Zealand overtook Emirates GBR on leg three while all 10 teams were off the foils, as Emirates GBR decided to sail a further distance in order to get back on the foils - and it paid off - with them picking up speed and getting ahead of Peter Burling's crew. Emirates GBR then led the fleet and crossed the finish line in first place.

For the second race of Day 2, Emirates GBR was crossing the start line next to Taylor Canfield's United States Team. As they crossed the line, Emirates GBR foiled past the US Team which led to a protest from Canfield for barging. The umpires agreed and a DSQ quickly followed, this then made it impossible for Emirates GBR to secure enough points to make it into the Final Race, dashing their dreams of victory in Dubai.

Speaking after coming ashore, Ainslie said: "It was a difficult way to end for us. We had a really good first race then at the second start we were in pole position and it was 50/50 with the US Team and they were obviously gunning to try and shut us out, but the umpires decided to disqualify us and that was a really tough call for us as a Team.

"I felt we were sailing really well today with the bigger wing and the Team was coming together, but in sport and in life sometimes things go against you and you just have to take it on the chin.

"If I had my time again I'd do it completely different, but I've been through enough ups and downs in my career to see it with a bit of perspective."

The day ended with Australia, Canada and New Zealand in the Event Final, with it being one of the closest races ever seen in SailGP. It was a tussle at the finish line, with leaders Canada receiving a penalty on the approach which meant they were denied victory despite being first across the line. It was a matter of metres between New Zealand and Australia, with the Kiwis being declared the winners.

Ainslie described the Event Final as "an epic race".

"I wasn't happy about watching it rather than being in it, but it was an epic race, an all-time SailGP classic, which just showcases what a brilliant event it's been here in Dubai. It's been one of the best events we've had in the League and we're very proud to be here flying the Emirates flag as the home team. We are certainly hoping for more events here in Dubai in the future."

Related Articles

Falmouth Classics 2024 set for June
Over 30 entries have already been received The Falmouth Classics, a major UK sailing event for classic boats will take place from 14th - 16th June with arrival of participating vessels on Thursday 13th. Posted on 24 Feb
New flagship BALI 5.8 launched
Celebrating the 10th anniversary for the brand CATANA GROUP launches its 14th BALI CATAMARANS model, the BALI 5.8, for the brand's 10th anniversary! Posted on 24 Feb
World ARC 2024-25 - Discovering San Cristobal
Half-day tour with the World ARC rally participants As the bus climbed higher into the hills, the scenery became greener, the clouds descended, and it got noticeably cooler. Posted on 24 Feb
One of the great modern-day sea adventures
A magical journey that is both informative and engaging Writing in a style that is both informative and engaging, yet with a playful sense of humour, Shane Granger takes the reader, whether he be an armchair sailor or deep-sea mariner, on a magical journey... Posted on 22 Feb
Mav Lite: Responsible Performance
Built with recycled bio-based fabric technology This jacket offers the perfect blend of responsible performance and functionality. Built with recycled bio-based fabric technology, this Mav-Lite packaway, 100% waterproof and windproof jacket is breathable. Posted on 22 Feb
Restored Schooner goes to Greenland again
Next up closer to home: Chesapeake Bay Plastics Study Longtime Annapolis-based sailors Matt Rutherford and Nicole Trenholm are not just any sailors, they are highly experienced citizen scientists whose ambitious stated mission can be read on their organization's website. Posted on 21 Feb
BoatLife 2024 affirms position as key UK boat show
Solidifying its position as an important sales show for the UK boating community During its four-day run, BoatLife 2024 - Powered by Suzuki, solidified its position as an important sales show for the UK boating community. Posted on 20 Feb
Eye on the prize
The contenders primed for the Caribbean 600 The Caribbean 600 presents a challenge unlike any of the world's offshore races. Circumnavigating eleven islands and contending with notoriously difficult currents and tradewinds is hugely demanding and offers one of the most intriguing courses worldwide. Posted on 19 Feb
The importance of boat insurance by InsureMy
Looking after your boat starts with insurance In 2024, the importance of boat insurance in the UK cannot be overstated. Posted on 19 Feb
Predictwind announce Over the Horizon AIS
Predictwind have released an all new Over the Horizon AIS (OHA) feature on the DataHub Predictwind, the world leading weather information, forecasting and routing service have released an all new Over the Horizon AIS (OHA) feature on the DataHub. Users can view AIS data out to 300nm, directly on your chartplotter and nav apps. Posted on 19 Feb
Cyclops Marine 2023 November - FOOTERCrewsaver 2021 Safetyline FOOTERupffront 2024 February soft attachments BOTTOM