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Festival of Sails 2017

Stack Winter Champs hit the spot

by Zoe Hawkins on 10 Oct 2012
On the beach - 2012 Stack Winter Championships - Murrays Bay SC John Adair

A great group of organisers and supporters, including Murrays Bay Sailing Club, Yachting New Zealand, The Water Shed, Harken, Burnsco, Force Racing, and major sponsor Stack Business Interiors, pulled together to make last week's Stack Winter Champs a terrific event.

The Stack Winter Champs was a high quality regatta with a high quality fleet, summarises Murrays Bay Sailing Club Commodore David Gunn, of the event that is now seen as delineating the winter and summer seasons, for about 200 boats and 300 sailors.

For a number of new Optimist sailors, it was their first ever regatta. For Olympians including Jo Aleh, Polly Powrie, Sarah Winther, and Laser Worlds medallists Andy Maloney and Scott Leith, it was business as usual, racing in territory they are very familiar with.

35 knots buffeted the course on Saturday and for the first time in 13 years, racing was cancelled. Both Friday and Sunday offered up better conditions, shifty and challenging but making for good racing.

'Consistent performance won the day, really,' says David Gunn, noting that the people who managed to maintain a good level of safe results, generally came out at the top of their fleets, and that the regatta was an ambitious one for new entrants to the Green Opti fleet, who did very well.

'We thank everyone, including the volunteer efforts and the businesses and organisations that put their weight behind the regatta, for making it happen,' he says.

In the week prior to the Stack Winter Champs, the club, in association with Andrew Brown of Force Racing, offered an intensive two-day coaching clinic, that was taken up by approximately 100 young sailors, traveling from as far away as Timaru and Queen Charlotte just for the purpose.

Our Olympic Gold Medallists from the 470 class, Jo and Polly, presented the prizes, which included a brand new NZ QPTIMIST from The Watershed and North Sails, and their 470 dinghy was on display and inspected by many admiring young people.

With one of the biggest events of the season successfully completed, the club is now back into regular sailing programs, focusing on its learn to sail, and core racing and coaching program.

Find out more about the club at www.murraysbay.org.nz or call (+649) 479 4180



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