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Javelin Nationals - Mixed results in mixed conditions at Lake Taupo

by Antje Muller on 12 Mar 2016
Bottom Mark Rounding - Javelin Skiff National Championships 2016 Yuki Katsushima
The 14ft Javelin Skiffs are getting together on Lake Taupo for their New Zealand Championships this weekend. A new boat being built along with a date change reduced the fleet, but the racing was just as close as ever.

In the first race, the oldest boat Hot Gossip led for the first lap but could not defend the lead in shifty and gusty conditions, and Thumper took the victory. With the wind coming up to 25 knots, there were amazingly fast gennaker rides, and several capsizes.

Phlipnhel was doing fine with the replacement skipper Wade, leading around the top mark several times, but unfortunately broke their mast after a capsize, which took them out of the contest.

After the first three races on Friday, the four leading boats were within four points of each other, leaving the contest wide open.

The Saturday started well for Trailblazer with a win coming from third, catching the leading Thumper only at the last top mark. Flying Circus had a good race, beating Bax Contractors across the line, thereby putting the three Lee hulls in the first three places. Brilliant sunshine and warm water but cool breeze made for wonderful sailing conditions.


In Race Five, Bax Contractors had bad start, crossing the fleet astern on port, but after tacking and going left found a favourable shift, which saw them coming into the top mark second behind Thirty Something. Because they managed to stay inside until the anticipated shift came, they got to gybe and pass them, winning the race. Trailblazer and Hot Gossip would have been in touch but got knocked around the top mark. Hot Gossip managed a third place ahead of Trailblazer in the finish.

Due to big holes and shifts, the first beat of Race Six was very challenging. Hot Gossip went up the middle and caught some good lifts, with Bax Contractors following them and rounding the top mark in second place behind them. Trailblazer got buried, never reaching the definitive right hand shift and could not recover on the one-lap track, even though choosing the Lake side on the downwind looked famous for a while. Bax Contractors showed great boat speed on the light-wind run going lower and faster that all of their competition. Hot Gossip was struggling with taking on water, which saw Thirty Something and Full Frontal beating them to the line.

After six races, there are still only seven points between the first and fifth placed yacht. Sunday will see the final three races on this contest. The light wind forecast was welcome to Bax Contractors.




Preliminary Results after 6 (of 10) Races, 1 Discard

R1 R2 R3 R4 R5 R6 Total Net
1st Thirty Something Wade McGee Demian Dixon 5 1 1 6 2 2 17 11
2nd Bax Contractors Ben Bax Dylan Doug 3 2 4 4 1 1 15 11
3rd Trailblazer David Brown David Feek 2 5 2 1 4 5 19 14
4th Thumper Sara Watters Hamish Norton 1 6 10 2 6 3 28 18
5th Hot Gossip Antje Muller Kez Cameron 4 4 3 5 3 4 23 18
6th Flying Circus Andrew Howden Mark Gatti 7 10 5 3 5 10 40 30
7th Phlipnhel Wade Gatfield Craig Gilberd 6 3 10 10 10 10 49 39
8th Black Bart Mat McMillan Andy Chapman 10 10 10 7 10 10 57 47
9th The Unknown Doug Roberts Bill Mullins 10 10 10 10 10 10 60 50

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