Team New Zealand helmsman Peter Burling admits they took a chance with the design of their boat for the America's Cup match – but it paid off in spectacular fashion.
In the aftermath of the final victory on Wednesday, sealing the Cup defence with a 7-3 series victory, Luna Rossa co-helmsman Jimmy Spithill said at times they felt like they were "taking a knife to a gunfight".
The difference between the two yachts wasn't quite that pronounced, as the Italians were extremely competitive in some conditions, especially with their high mode.
But Te Rehutai was a genuine rocket ship, that seemed to get quicker across the series.
However, it wasn't all plain sailing. The learning curve on the New Zealand boat was steep and Burling said it was a difficult weapon to master, built for speed over control.
"With our boat we definitely pushed the limits in a lot of regards, in the design," Burling told Newstalk ZB. "It definitely was relatively tricky to sail but when you sailed it well it did pay off. We are stoked with the package we have put together.
Burling paid tribute to the 35-strong design unit led by Dan Bernasconi and said the performance of the boat reflected a true team effort.
"The fastest boat always wins the America's Cup but to get the fastest boat you have got to have a really good boatbuilding team to actually be able to build it," said Burling. "You have to have a good sailing team to be able to give input and it's really the culmination of so many things coming together to create that fast boat."
Hours after the win on Wednesday night, the 31-year-old was still being besieged by well-wishers and fans, on the short walk between the media centre and the team's base and agreed the day would live long in the memory.
"The trip home was pretty incredible," said Burling. "We went right up the top of the course and down through all the spectator boats. To get to share this moment with so many Kiwis and so many people that have supported us through the event… we are super stoked to win it for them. We are absolutely blown away by the support."
The rapturous scenes on Wednesday makes it hard to contemplate an overseas defence, with various proposals said to be on the table, including a one-off event in England next year, or Cup regattas in other overseas locations.
Burling didn't want to be drawn on what the future might hold.
"It's been great to defend it here this time and right now it's all we have been worrying about for the last three years," said Burling. "So we will see what the future holds. But it's been an amazing event, amazing to see how many Kiwis got behind it [and] we were absolutely stoked to win it like we did today."
It was time to celebrate for Burling and the team last night, but the 30-year-old won't have long to take stock, with a busy 2021 ahead.
"We have got a few things lined up, with Sail GP and the Olympic Games," said Burling.
"But our other passion with marine conservation and our Live Ocean charities is another big part of it. We'll have a few days off, and hopefully figure it out from there."