SAN FRANCISCO (CBS Sports) — On an otherwise ho-hum Wednesday afternoon, Oracle Team USA completed one of the greatest comebacks in sports history, clawing back from an 8-1 race deficit against Emirates New Zealand to win the America’s Cup on San Francisco Bay.
The America’s Cup, which rarely makes waves on a national scene, became riveting as this year’s version marked the closest chase for the Cup in the past 30 years. In fact, it was just the third time in 162 years that the final race decided the Cup’s winner.
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Just as remarkable as the comeback itself, Oracle, bankrolled by American billionaire Larry Ellison, had to overcome a two-point penalty – a result of excessive weight on the catamarans in preliminary events last year.
Oracle had to win 11 races (of the 19), while New Zealand needed just nine, if the Americans wanted to defend their title.
“The Cup has never seen anything like this,” said Bob Fisher, an America’s Cup historian.
Ultimately, Oracle won Wednesday’s winner-take-all race against New Zealand by a comfortable 44 seconds, capping the most stunning comeback in Cup history.
With that said, where does Oracle’s triumph rank among the greatest sporting comebacks of all-time?
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