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Watch: Team NZ destroys Luna Rossa in opening race of America’s Cup World Series regatta

A disastrous first leg has cost Luna Rossa any chance of competing with Team New Zealand in the first race of the America’s Cup World Series.

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Team NZ hit the lead early and didn’t give the Italians a sniff on Auckland’s Waitematā Harbour. Source: 1 NEWS

Team NZ skipper Peter Burling edged counterpart Jimmy Spithill at the starting gates, and that was as close as the Italian outfit found themselves in race one.

There were multiple touchdowns for Prada as they headed to gate number one, while Burling had Team NZ flying. By the time they reached the gate they were up by over 30 seconds.

Downwind, it was much of the same with Team NZ extending their lead to 1m 13s.

With the lead still being extended at the halfway mark, Team NZ were virtually racing themselves. With the speed difference into the wind a whopping seven knots, Team NZ maxed out at 36 and Prada at 29.

With the lead hitting over 1600m at times, this first race will be demoralising for the Italians and undoubtedly the two other challengers.

Te Rehutai crossed the finish line a staggering 3:13 minutes ahead of the Italians, in what was the perfect start for Team NZ and their fans. 

It is back to the drawing board for the Italians and skipper Spithill, who had positive things to say about Team NZ.

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American Magic took the lead from the prestart and didn’t look back during the face-off at the America’s Cup World Series regatta in Auckland.

”Team NZ did a great job, not too many mistakes. We lost our starting software, but they were much sharper turning the corners." 

Burling said he couldn't believe how fast the boat could go.

"It's incredible the speed and how quickly they can manoeuvre. I really enjoyed the pre-start, then we got a click on them."

In the second race, America Magic hit the lead early over INEOS Team UK, who effectively retired after breaking down in the water, allowing their rivals to finish without competition. 

In race three, it was a first win for Luna Rossa over INEOS Team UK, who again had technical issues and were forced to retire from their second straight race. 

The Kiwis raced again at 5.20pm.