by Sara Tucker
Westlake Boys High School with YTP member Donovan Neil - 2011 RNZYS HARKEN Schools Regatta
The Kerikeri High School team of helm O’Shea Butler, Sam King, Sam Brierley and Klaus Ohlendorf lead Day 1 of the RNZYS HARKEN Schools Regatta after winning all four of today’s races.
40 young sailors jumped onboard the Elliott 7s this morning, were towed out and then drifted around for three hours. What a great way to learn the set-up!
One hour was scheduled for a practice session to allow the teams time to adjust to the new boats, which none of them had ever sailed before. But that hour turned into three as the teams drifted around on the western side of the Auckland harbour bridge this morning due to a complete lack of wind.
Race Officer, Gerald Flynn commented 'It was very frustrating but what a great way for the youths to learn the set-up of the boats and prepare themselves for racing'.
After a long wait at the RNZYS Clubrooms the teams left the dock and four races were completed.
With Kerikeri High School well in the lead, second place overall with a total of 10 points is King’s College helmed by Jack Collinson. In third place is the Rangitoto College team helmed by Alex Dyet and then the all female Westlake Girls High School team with 21 points overall.
Current members of the RNZYS Lion Foundation Youth Training Programme were onboard for the first two races to show them the ropes and then it was all up to them!
Ten school teams from as far North as Kerikeri High School and as far South as Canterbury have taken up the challenge this weekend at the RNZYS HARKEN Schools Fleet Racing Regatta of jumping onboard and racing an entirely new boat.
The RNZYS HARKEN Schools Regatta is an annual event hosted by the RNZYS and sponsored by HARKEN NEW ZEALAND since 2007. It is an initiative by the RNZYS Lion Foundation Youth Training Programme Committee to promote the programme to schools in the wider Auckland region.
Forty eight Auckland High Schools were invited to enter with 8 taking up the challenge plus teams from Kerikeri High School and Canterbury Combined Schools team who have made the journey all the way to Auckland for two days of one-design racing.
The RNZYS Lion Foundation Youth Training Programme launched the brand new fleet of Greg Elliott designed and Yachting Developments built, training keelboats in June last year. With a fleet of brand new boats, this is one-design racing at it’s best!
Most of the young sailors are from dinghy sailing backgrounds, sailing one-man boats, or occasionally with one other crew member. This weekend they make the jump to keelboat racing with a total of 4 crew onboard the Elliott 7’s: helm, mainsheet, trimmer & bowman.
There are 11 female sailors competing which includes one all female team from Westlake Girls High School helmed by Holly Hamlin.
After the weekend members are invited to join the RNZYS Lion Foundation Youth Training Programme – but will they take up the challenge of 1 year of what they have just experienced over 2 days!
KeriKeri High School – O’Shea Butler (Boat 2. Watts & Hughes) 1 1 1 1 4 points
Kings College – Jack Collinson (Boat 1. International) 2 2 4 2 10 points
Rangitoto College – Alex Dyet (Boat 3. Team Telecom) 4 3 3 4 14 points
Westlake Girls High School – Holly Hamlin (Boat 9. Doyle Sails) 9 4 5 3 21 points
Albany Senior High School – Erica Dawson (Boat 5. Whiting Power) 8 5 2 10 25 points
Westlake Boys High School – Sam Schofield (Boat 4. Harken) 5 8 8 5 26 points
Canterbury Combined Schools– Jay Harris (10. Boating NZ Magazine) 3 7 10 7 27 points
Mahurangi College – Angus Adamson (Boat 7. Soar Printing) 7 10 7 6 30 points
St. Kentigern College – Stewart Dodson (Boat 6. Western Mailing) 10 6 6 9 31 points
St. Kentigern College – George Brasell (Boat 8. Yachting Developments) 6 9 9 8 32 points
View further information & Images on the RNZYS website www.rnzys.org.nz