America's Cup champions Team New Zealand have dominated the second day of racing to secure an early spot in the preliminary regatta final at Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
After a pair of wins on the opening day, the Kiwis repeated that dose on the second to clinch their place in Sunday's two-boat match race final (NZ time), with two more AC37 fleet races still to come.
Old rivals Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli loom as their likely opponents at the last stage and they began day two with victory, adding to their lone success from the previous day.
Team NZ battled American Magic up and down the course, but enjoyed a better final gybe into the finish to grab second.
New Zealand came back to capture the remaining two contests, but the Italians' fourth placing in the last leaves them slightly vulnerable to Swiss Alinghi Red Bull Racing for the other final spot.
After winning the first regattta at Vilanova, the Americans had struggled on the first day at Jeddah, with a disqualification, last-place finish and failure to start the third race. They became more of a factor on the second day, highlighted by their second placing in the last race, but languish far outside final contention.
"It is awesome," said Team NZ helmsman Peter Burling. "As a sailing team, all you want is tight racing and you cannot get closer racing than that.
"We had some incredible races with Prada in the first two races, and with Alinghi Red Bull Racing and American Magic in the last one, but it was awesome to get a couple of wins and a second for our confidence going into the final day tomorrow."