Officials were following the rules letting America's cup race go ahead

Ainslie and Iain Percy, the team manager and tactician on fellow America's Cup challenger Artemis Racing, were both close friends of Simpson and helped set up a charity in his name to promote sailing for young people after his death.

Land Rover BAR skipper Ben Ainslie faced a setback when his team's boat suffered severe damage, preventing them from racing.

Team New Zealand was the worst affected, crashing out of its second race of the day and capsizing.

Bendigo's Glenn Ashby has made a strong start to the America's Cup semi-finals with Team New Zealand.

At one point in the second race, Olympic gold medallist Outteridge's crew sailed off the course completely and incurred a penalty from which they could not recover.

Three New Zealand sailors were thrown into the water, with the other three stranded in mid-air as the boat was pulled on to its side and then upright. Nail-biting. Winds in excess of 20 knots, crossing speeds four times that, boats quite literally being torn to shreds on Bermuda's normally tranquil Sound.

The delay will be a relief to Team New Zealand, whose crew had spent all night repairing their catamaran and its "wing" sail after "pitch-poling" and nose-diving into the water during the race against Britain's BAR.

Asked whether yesterday's events will have any lingering psychological impact on the team when they return to the racecourse, the Team NZ skipper said thrills and spills are part of sailing high performance boats.

"A bit of a shame for those guys.it was shaping up to be a good race", Burling said.

Though the damage to the AC50 vessel initially looked severe, Burling later sounded confident the crew would have it race ready for the resumption of action Wednesday - weather permitting.

SoftBank Team Japan beat Sweden's Artemis Racing on Tuesday to go 2-1 up in their best-of-nine America's Cup semi-final.

SoftBank grabbed first blood with a victory which left helmsman Dean Barker pleased at how his crew had managed challenging conditions. The team has a spare wing which it is allowed to use under the America's Cup rules.

America's Cup officials were simply following the rules when they gave this morning's racing in high winds the go-ahead.

  • Julie Sanders