by Mel Benton
Luna Rossa crew helmed by Francesco Bruni - Day 1 2012 National Match Racing Championships
It has been a huge day out on the water today for Day 1 of the New Zealand Match Racing Championship.
14 Skippers and 10 boats requires incredible logistics and timing for all involved. A huge thank you to the Race Officers, Umpires and Boat drivers for all their efforts. PRO Megan Kensington said earlier today the weather was always forecast to be shifty and difficult but the goal was to get in as many flights as possible.
The breeze has been shifty all day with direction shifts from 335 Degrees to 040 degrees, coupled with that was a constant change of wind speed from 3.5 knots to 12 knots was the range until approximately 1500hrs when the afternoon breeze filled in to 15 knots.
By this time, however the RNZYS Corporate Regatta was starting, closely followed by the PCC Rum Race at 1600hrs and the Young 88 Sprints that started at 1800.
Kensington, along with International Umpire Russell Green were pleased to achieve seven flights with an abandoned race also being run before pack-up.
During Flight 2 a massive wind-shift caused the course to become a one tack leg meaning the race between two heavy weights Rod Davis and Laurie Jury was abandoned. The race was re-run at the end of the day with Laurie Jury beating Davis by 14 seconds.
During the day the top ranked skippers have certainly shown the newcomers the way around the race track but they didn’t have it all their own way. Chris Steele, the Lion Foundation RNZYS Youth Training Programme Team, 36 Below, beat Scott Dickson in Flight Three and Francesco Bruni in Flight Six
The only women’s crew, helmed by Samantha Osborne, had a win against the Royal Port Nicholson team that is helmed by Adam Middleton.
Tomorrow sees perhaps more evenly matched flights as the Round Robin continues. Racing is scheduled to begin at 1000 hours tomorrow. Conditions are once again expected to be light.
Laurie Jury 5
Will Tiller 5
Gavin Brady 5
Dave Hazard 4
Francesco Bruni 4
Chris Steele 4
Scott Dickson 4
Tugdual Piriou 1
Sam Osborne 1
Rod Davis 1
Mike Bullot 1
Adam Middleton 0
Dave Wood 0
Hampus Appelgren 0