Mighty Mary prevails

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The Independent Online
Mighty Mary prevails

A new, shiny gauntlet was thrown on to the San Diego race track as the all-woman crew of Bill Koch's latest America's Cup machine, Mighty Mary, won its first race against Kevin Mahaney, who struggled in his Pact '95, writes Mike Turner. Koch, successful defender in 1992, had promised his team would come up with something special, but, on its first outing, the boat was beaten by Dennis Conner's Stars & Stripes. In its second, the starting helmsman "JJ" Isler drove all over Mahaney, who has removed Kenny Read from his decision-making quartet and replaced him with the designer Bruce Nelson. The new Japanese boat looked quick against John Bertrand's oneAustralia as it tuned up for its crunch match against France for the fourth place in the Louis Vuitton Cup semi-finals.