by Alan Dawson
New Zealand Finn Nationals, Takapuna, February 2013
Finn Master sailor, and former All Black, Alan Dawson gives his perspective on Annual Up the Creek Classic:
We have a new mangrove champion. Yes the 'slippery, sly, smooth, smiling, sailor' (sssss) Dirch Andersen wins the Annual Up the Creek Race.
Contested by five Finns it was a close contest with each creek adventure having its own start so a total of four races was a good format for this prestige trophy.
This year the Waiuku port buoy was placed right at the wharf so on lookers had a good view of the Finns.
I doubt if there is any other Finn race in the world that would come close to this classic race.
One of the set rules is you need to retrieve a mangrove leaf at some stage to qualify for the cup. A great light hearted Finn day.
Dirch Andersen 1,2,1,2 = 6
Dave Hoogenboom 3,1,5,1 = 10
Alan Dawson 2,3,3,3 = 11
Jim Goodare 4,4,2,4 = 14
John Duff 5,5,4,5 = 19
On Sunday saw eight Finns contest another Champs day as part of the champs series. Light westerlies but good sailing conditions.
Excellent close racing with Mark Perrow taking to first gun from Dave Hoogenboom with he 'ssss' in third place.
Race 2 saw NZL 23 picking the wind shifts better, to lead at the bottom mark with a beat to go. Trying to cover the fleet I let Dave slip through for the gun. Dirch and Mark finishing third equal.
One of the fastest boys was Butch in his Vanguard. Just needed to remember the right course and may have taken a gun.
Mark's first sail with his Wilke mast. Lookout fleet when we have some more breeze. I’m picking he’s the one to beat.
Jim, Duffy, Royce and Gerrit all had their moments, but if you got the shifts wrong you lost out big time.
A great Finn debrief with lots of talk about the 'Waiuku 2013 Finn Masters 'regatta on the 29, 30,31 of this month. This is the one regatta that you owe your Finn to be there. Lots of talk about making this regatta the best ever. Up to you.
More sailing this weekend. Saturday and Sunday. Will do a Bacon and Eggs on Sunday. Early start.
Word has it Matt Coutts won the Sth Island champs at Christchurch, thus winning the Craig Monk Trophy for this season being our #1 ranked Finn sailor. On behalf of the boys, well done and deserved Matt.
Thanks for supporting the Waiuku Yacht Club.