The definition of a spy is that he or she operates furtively. But there's been no secrecy around the blatant spying of Oracle and Team New Zealand on each other's boats during the five-day America's Cup break.

Both teams have dropped all pretence about their intelligence-gathering ahead of the final resuming in Bermuda this Sunday New Zealand time.

With Peter Burling and the red-hot Kiwis leading 3-0 in the first-to-seven-wins showdown, desperate Oracle spies went about their work today with the subtlety of a sledgehammer.

Team New Zealand had not been out on the Great Sound the previous day but when the boat and crew returned to the water today, Oracle spies were everywhere.


The moment the boat was launched back onto the water dockside, Oracle cameramen onboard one of their chase boats was openly clicking away.

The Oracle support boat then dutifully followed Aotearoa into the Great Sound, capturing more shots and footage.

Team New Zealand seemed unperturbed by the surreal situation.

That's probably because the Kiwis are hardly holier than thou.

Team New Zealand has been doing the same thing, assiduously gaining as much information as possible to determine whether Oracle are capable of a San Francisco-style comeback.

Ray Davies told Newstalk ZB's Rachel Smalley that the team continues to keep a close eye on Oracle.

"They're sort of changing their boat to look a little more like Team New Zealand's, so that's very interesting."

And TNZ performance coach Murray Jones told the Herald that Oracle have "been playing around with several different configurations with their rudder elevators, and also their boards.


"They've been doing a lot of work changing a few things closer to how we sail the boat.

"I guess these last couple of days is just assessing those changes and I would expect on Friday to lock it in and get used to sailing the boat again in a slightly different configuration."

Spying, it seems, is now routine fare.