Late surge gives Retro the Opua E5.9 Traveler Series event for 2014

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Julie Kidman

Sixteen boats contested the 2014 Opua round of the Elliott 5.9 Traveler Series - hosted by the always welcoming Opua Cruising Club.

The event was generously sponsored by North Sails, with input from both the Auckland loft and the recently-opened local North Sails loft operated by Roger Hall.

Ewok (Coulam, Banks, Puddick) - RAYC - 2014 E5.9 Traveler Series - Opua Regatta
Julie Kidman
One of the NZ fleets favourite venues, the club organisation and friendly welcome always make this regatta an enjoyable and smooth affair while excellent OCC catering and accommodation options add a strong social aspect.

Among the big fleet, as usual there a scattering of visiting big name sailors filling in as well as the regulars. The E5.9 Association is pleased with the growth in racing and is optimistic of continued increase in fleet numbers as the year goes on.

Day one saw five races sailed plenty of breeze and plenty of action as some of the big crews prospered. The leader after day one was the team on Animal Crackers (Chris Maddock, Josh Tucker and Damon Jolliffe). Also featuring heavily were some of the new boats in the fleet with Rough and Reddy (Craig Satterthwaite and Bart Bearda and Matty Mitchell) sailing very consistently and Cheeky Darky (Gill and Nathan Williams, with Carl Williams providing in the grunt in place of regular crew Andrew Cooke - who was away on a delivery trip that was making headlines for different reasons!).

Mike Sanderson and his team of Chris Steele and Josh Salthouse on Retro hung in to stay in contention with several good placings. Whangarei's Hobo (Rob Ward, Bruce Yovich and Mike Sherwood) and Auckland's Ewok (Craig Coulam, Cody Banks and Mark Puddick), the winner of the Auckland Champs, also featured.

Day 2 saw a big change in conditions with a foggy start. The fleet launched and spent a couple of hours waiting for a soft northerly breeze to fill. In the two races that were able to be sailed there were some big movers in the fleet with Onerahi's Zoot Allures (Dave Cochran, Jackson Yovich and Michael Cate) placings of second and first going some way to addressing their high scores from day one.

Mike Sanderson and the Retro team nailed the first race of the day and finished third in the second to take the overall win by a single point from a consistent Animal Crackers. Rough and Reddy struggled in the lighter breezes but had done enough on day 1 to hang on for third. Another boat to feature was Opua's Cut Lunch, owned by Chris Hornell and steered by Simon Minoprio with Craig Gunnell on bow, who finished a strong third in race 6.

Retro is now leading the 2014 Traveler Series, taking over from Ewok. Results can be tracked by here.http://clicking here

2014-15 Racing Schedule and Results

The next event is the Marsden Cove Traveler Series Regatta in early August. Here's the full schedule:
Regatta 3 - Marsden Cove - August 23-24, Onerahi YC, Whangarei Heads
Regatta 4 - Lake Rotoiti. September 20-21, (BOPTYS)
Regatta 5 - Omaha - November 1-2, Sandspit YC, Omaha, Rodney District
2014 NZ E5.9 National Champs. Napier. November 26-29, Napier Sailing Club
2015 Kawau Weekend - 20-22 March 2015.

Results can be tracked on Racetrack click here

More new E5.9 hulls underway

Quiet times waiting for the breeze to fill - 2014 E5.9 Traveler Series - Opua Regatta
Julie Kidman
The NZ E5.9 Association has undertaken the series build of at least six new Elliott 5.9's. This project was over a year in the planning and is underwritten by several current owners and the Elliott 5.9 Class Association on a cost recovery basis. The project is being undertaken in conjunction with, and is supported by, well known Auckland boatbuilder; Sea Craft/Haines Hunter.

Indicative pricing is $6,950+GST for a bonded hull, deck and hull liner. All standard equipment to complete can be obtained through Association-approved suppliers and retail outlets. As an alternative there is a good supply of used equipment such as masts and sails.

Four of the new hulls are now sailing, with the prospect of several more being required. Each hull will be fully compliant with the class rules, using the class association-owned moulds and construction guidelines.

The Elliott 5.9 and NZ E5.9 Class Association

Offering close racing and great social events built around a North Island weekend regatta circuit, the Elliott 5.9 class is the perfect three-person syndicate boat. The class is relatively low maintenance and is sailed by a crew of three. No rail meat - everyone has a job! There are active fleets in Opua, Whangarei, Auckland, Plimmerton, and New Plymouth with boats in other venues like Tauranga, Lyttleton, Nelson and Queenstown.

Plimmerton now boasts six boats and the fleet is looking forward to another competitive year of club racing.

The E5.9 Class Association welcomes enquiries and will work with interested sailors and owners to get them into the fleet. Charter boats are occasionally available and there are occasionally second hand boats for sale.

Interested sailors can keep up with Association news and our events and projects by 'Liking' the E5.9 Association Facebook Page;

You can also join our mailing list via the Subscribe to News button on the home page of our website:

Boats for sale can be found via Trademe or by contacting the Class Association.

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Julie Kidman

Close finish - 2014 E5.9 Traveler Series - Opua Regatta
Julie Kidman

Leeward mark - 2014 E5.9 Traveler Series - Opua Regatta
Julie Kidman