Strong coffee, loud cheers and impromptu haka were all on display as keen fans braved the early-morning cold to watch Team New Zealand reach match point in the America's Cup.

Hundreds of people crammed into the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron while about 50 people were at the Maritime Room on Auckland's viaduct at 5am to catch the action on the big screens.

Team New Zealand won both races in Bermuda today, giving them a 6-1 lead over Oracle Team USA and putting them only one win away from clinching the Cup.

There were lots of yawns and coffee cups in hand among the crowd, but no one took their eyes off the racing. Many spectators were on the edge of their seats.


The crowd cheered and waved New Zealand flags as the triumphant Kiwis crossed the line.

Sailing fan Geoff Bergin has been at the Maritime Room for every race of the finals series. He said today's racing was "getting more and more nerve-wracking towards the end".

"Those were beautiful wins. Everyone's nerves are on edge.

"This is a proud moment for New Zealand. Everyone should be proud of it."

He was confident Team New Zealand would defeat Oracle, but was quick to add "it ain't over until the fat lady sings".

"Every Kiwi should be up now watching this. Watching these guys we should be proud to be Kiwi.

"They're so innovative, with the cycling that has never been done before. Kiwis are amazing, an amazing bunch of people."

At the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron, supporter Bennet Medary said the early starts were "well worth it".


He said he was "excited and elated" but also anxious.

Bob Still said the Kiwis have rattled Oracle skipper Jimmy Spithill and just kept getting faster. But he said it was still a nerve-wracking watch.

The crowd at the Maritime Room recorded a message to send to the team, shouting "We believe" in unison.

Despite the Kiwis' dominant performance on the water there were gasps as the broadcast cut out momentarily, while a cry of "take that Spithill!" could be heard as Team New Zealand pulled off an incredible pre-start manoeuvre.

As Team New Zealand cruised across the finish line to take the second race of the day Bergin jumped out of his seat and performed an impromptu haka, much to the delight of the crowd at the Maritime Room.

After the Americans won their first race in the first-to-seven format match yesterday, the Kiwis could have been excused for a few nerves, with memories of their San Francisco capitulation four years ago still haunting them.

But helmsman Peter Burling responded in the best possible way, taking both today's races in convincing fashion.

35th America's Cup match
Race 7: Emirates Team New Zealand beat Oracle Team USA by 12s
Race 8: Emirates Team New Zealand beat Oracle Team USA by 30s
Team New Zealand lead the first-to-seven series 6-1