by Rob Burn
Start line yellow flight - 2013 Starling Nationals, Picton
Less mistakes, more success. Trent Rippey's mantra on Day three of the Starling Class Nationals, Picton.
Trent from TYPC, finished his stellar day in Blue flight with two firsts and a second leapfrogging him past George Gautry and into the lead.
The breeze came in early making a good transit out to the sailing area in some welcome warmth and sunshine.
Race Officer Gerald soon had the first fight lined up and ready to go. A couple of minor course changes then a General Recall saw both fleets settle down into some great sailing.
Conditions were again more on the light side, averaging around 6 to 8 knots, but with some stronger gusts
2013 Starling Nationals, Picton - Image by: Antonia Griggs
Sailing can be a cruel sport and those that got caught on the wrong side of the course certainly paid the price. The third and final race of the day saw many of the top ranked sailors buried deep in the fleet. George Gautry used his 'get out of jail' card and sailed back into seventh, others like Taylor Burn were not quite so fortunate.
Race winners, besides Trent Rippey, included Scott Inglis of Taupo Yacht Club, also a second, George Gautry, Muritai, Lola Stoodley, Timaru, Patrick Haybittle, Murrays Bay Sailing Club.
The top five on the Leader board after eight races are Trent Rippey, George Gautry, Leonard Takahashi-Fry, Lola Stoodley and Taylor Burn.
Queen Charlotte Yacht Club has an enviable reputation for adding a little extra to the major regattas being run from the Club.
The Parents, supporters, coaches and officials were treated to a Mussel and Salmon feast with Picton Village Bakkerij breads, and accompanied by Spy Valley Wines. A great way to spend an hour or two around the blazing braziers working up the enthusiasm for a productive Starling Class AGM.
As always, a huge thank you to all the event sponsors, particularly Port Marlborough, Interislander, Harken, North Sails, among the many, plus the food sponsors, Le Cafe, Nelson Ranger Sea foods, New Zealand King Salmon, Picton Village Bakkerij and Spy Valley Wines.
Breeze, good weather and sunshine, good Race management, helpful Judges, enthusiastic volunteers, all contribute to what has been a great regatta so far.
The Final Series, the division into Gold and Silver Fleets, starts Anzac Day. 4 races to go to complete the scheduled series, no easy racing from here on.