We're only two days away from the start of the Prada Cup final and despite two weeks without competitive racing, I would not be surprised if both Ineos Team UK and Luna Rossa have made significant gains from when we last had a look at them.
The British have been in the shed for the better part of a week now and clearly, they are doing some substantial modifications to their boat.
It will be fascinating to see what effect that has when they take to the water on Saturday, as we witnessed first-hand how much a team can improve in the space of a few days when we faced Luna Rossa in the semifinals.
What has amazed me, however, is to see how quickly the Italians have changed their tune about the wind speed limits.
Only last month, our American Magic skipper Terry Hutchinson called for the minimum wind limit to be increased from 6.5 knots to avoid a repeat of what we saw during the Christmas Cup racing when the boats weren't able to foil in light breeze.
We weren't asking for any special treatment or a radical change, just that the minimum limit be raised to ensure the boats can do what they were designed to - namely foil - and that the strongest possible challenger gets to race Team New Zealand in the America's Cup match.
The Italians - and co-helmsman Francesco Bruni in particular - criticised us for suggesting this, saying we knew the rules when we were designing the boat.
This week, they were more than happy to agree to lowering the upper wind limit from 23kn to 21kn only days before racing the Brits, who were opposed to the lowering.
Luna Rossa would also not agree to the delay card - allowing a team to delay the start of a race by 15 minutes should they be experiencing technical difficulties - in the semis against us but have suddenly agreed to have it in the final.
We knew going into the Prada Cup that the Challenger of Record has has all the power. That's just the game. But there is some double standards. At times over the past few months, it's felt like rather than representing all challengers, the COR does what it believes is best for the team they are aligned with - while American Magic and Ineos Team UK are mere spectators to the process, unable to change anything.
That said, on the water Luna Rossa showed us all how much can change in a short space of time with how much better they were, especially up-range, in the semifinal.
Luna Rossa are certainly no longer off the pace in stronger winds and are a far more rounded package than they were in the early racing.
With lighter winds possibly still Ineos' Achilles heel, the weather conditions this weekend could prove to be crucial. They have, however, managed to make their boat slightly more energy efficient with their setup. It is a huge plus for the Brits that Giles Scott is never on the handles and can be a full-time tactician. They seem to have the ability to get in phase with the wind shifts, the pressure on the course and understand the course better.
Luna Rossa, with Bruni and Jimmy Spithill steering on opposite sides of the boat, has its strengths around the start line and in boat-on-boat situations, where they have an advantage over not having to switch sides. They will be strong in the way they manage their boat around the start line and in those initial intersections.
Heading into the Cup racing?
• Give yourself plenty of time and think about catching a ferry, train or bus to watch the Cup.
• Make sure your AT HOP card is in your pocket. It's the best way to ride.
• Don't forget to scan QR codes with the NZ COVID Tracer app when on public transport and entering the America's Cup Village.
• For more ways to enjoy race day, visit at.govt.nz/americascup.