by Gia Dumo
Karma Police - 2011 Coastal Classic - 2011
Karma Police, the first carbon composite race boat built at Unitec based on the design of Marine Technology lecturer Rob Shaw, saw action again in the biggest race in New Zealand over the Labour Day weekend.
Earlier in the week Rob announced their participation in the Coastal Classic which began at 10am on Friday 21 October from Devonport Wharf in Auckland, and finished 119 nautical miles up the coast, off Russell Wharf in the Bay of Islands. On the crew were Unitec CAT Boatbuilding graduates Blair Gerard and Paul Flett with Benny Butcher currently studying towards the Boatbuilding National Certificate at Unitec.
The lightweight canting-keel racer measuring just 9.1 meters finished second overall in the Round the North Island Race held early this year. It has also garnered third place in the 2010 HSBC Coastal Classic Race and second place in the 2010 Bay of Islands regatta in the two short years it’s been in the water.
These are but some of the projects that Unitec’s marine staff and graduates continually involve themselves in to stay on top of training and education in the marine industry, one of New Zealand’s largest manufacturing sectors.
The Unitec crew was reinforced by two veteran sailors this year, Stu Wilson, who has been on multiple round-the-world races, and Derek Saward who has recently taken up a full-time sailing position at EmiartesTeam New Zealand working towards the next Americas Cup campaign in San Francisco. Both sailed in the Coastal Classic on the boat in 2009.
Karma Police was fast out of the start holding onto several much larger yachts, and went on to finish 8th fastest monohull to Russell and 7th on handicap taking a fraction over 12 hours to complete the 120nm course.
*Related photos available by http://www.unitec.ac.nz/technology-built-environment/transport-tech/marine-technology/rni-race/rni-race_home.cfm!clicking_here