Macquarie Access Worlds - Bullets of wind propel Kiwi sailors + Video

Tim and Jan sailing with a borrowed australian sail - Macquarie access world championship 2012
Robert Hielkema
Tim Dempsey and Jan Apel are competing at the Access World Championships in the Paralympic SKUD 18 class. The pair have been nominated to represent New Zealand at the Paralympics and are working hard to prove they are worth selecting. I caught up with Tim and Jan after day two and with four races complete.

Tim was very happy with how the team performed 'the day was good, excellent actually the end result is very good two seconds, we are pretty happy with that.

It would have been nice to knock off Aussie Dan from his first place. 'It was a little disappointing not to strike harder at the start of the regatta. We were very pleased to get the boat round the course with the mast up considering the conditions.

There was 25-30 knots South South West, flat water with some massive bullets of wind coming over the hill in Middle Harbour North Sydney. 'It was Head out of the Boat sailing, you really have to be watching those puffs and have the mainsheet out of the cleat.' Tim explained that he got very close to the water today as the boat tipped over and the 140 kg keel worked hard to keep them upright. 'I gave my ribs a bit of a work out in the seat.'

Timing the start was hard work, especially in the puffy winds 'the clock went really slow and we were going way too fast, we knew we were early and needed to kill some time, we ended up reaching down the line, motored over the top of one of the Aussie boats then shot back up into the wind. If the line had been twice as long we would have been sitting sweet.' He says with a laugh.

'The whole day was a buzz, when it’s that windy you are pretty pumped up and alert.'

The pair from Auckland are now two days into the regatta, and they would dearly like to take a couple of races off Dan. 'We believe we can beat them so the next job is to prove it. So far we have achieved our goals sitting in second place. The dice has rolled our way a bit and it’s nice to be on the lucky side of it, we hope it continues to land our way.

Macquarie Access World Championships website