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Sunday, April 16, 2017
Hospitable Rather Than Hostile Welcome For New Zealand

IslandStats.com
Team New Zealand skipper Glenn Ashby has described the atmosphere in Bermuda as hospitable rather than hostile, with the escalating tensions in the America's Cup having been put to one side for now.

As Emirates Team New Zealand were packing up their boat earlier this month and preparing to depart for the Cup venue, Oracle chief executive and event head Russell Coutts fired a few missives the way of his former team. His comments came after Team NZ questioned a couple of late changes to the Protocol voted through by the five other competitors.

The increasing hostilities threatened to make Team NZ's arrival in Bermuda an uncomfortable one, but Ashby said the team have been made to feel very welcome.

"From my side we've been very well received as a team. Bermuda has welcomed us with open arms and we're very much enjoying being a part of the environment.

I've seen a few of the guys [from other teams] on the water, and everyone has given us a wave and said g'day," said Ashby.

"I think everyone is pleased to have us finally over here. There's absolutely no doubt that all those other teams will be eager to see how we go in the early stages on our training and they'll be keeping a close eye on when we launch."

Ashby is hopeful Team NZ's race boat will be ready to hit the water again next weekend. The shore crew have been working around the clock to reassemble the 50-ft catamaran, which arrived in Bermuda on a cargo plane earlier this week.

It is not just a case of putting the platform and wing back together - the time consuming part is re-installing the electronic and hydraulic systems that control the boat.

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