Steele wins NZ Youth Match Racing Championships at Wellington

Christ Steele (right) wins NZ Youth Match Racing Nationals - New Zealand Youth Match Racing Championships
Port Nicholson Yachting Trust

Former World Optimist Champion, Chris Steele has won the NZ Youth Match Racing Championships held on Wellington Harbour

With both Steele and Adam Middleton starting the final day 1-0 up and at match point in their semi finals the pressure was on Sam Mackay and Samuel McKenzie to come out firing and level the scores. Clearly neither Mackay nor McKenzie were feeling the pressure and opened the day with wins to stay alive.

This meant it was all on in Race 3 with the winner advancing to the final, some tight match racing action saw Steele and McKenzie advance to the finals, relegating Mackay and Middleton to sail off for third place.

With the southerly breeze easing and forecast to drop out completely Steele went 2-0 up in some very close racing with several lead changes and McKenzie fighting to offload a penalty right on the finish line.

In the third race Steele worked himself into the lead and kept extending to lead by 20 seconds at the final mark. The race was far from over though with the wind completely dying out on the final run to the finish.

This saw McKenzie close up to within metres of Steele before splitting to find some more breeze. In the end the new wind got to Steele first and saw him take out the final 3-0 and be crowned New Zealand Youth Match Racing Champion.

The sail off for third and fourth saw Middleton dispatch Mackay 2-0 while Basil Connor beat Daniel Philpott in their one off race for fifth.

Final results
1st – Chris Steele
2nd – Samuel McKenzie
3rd – Adam Middleton
4th – Sam Mackay
5th – Basil Connor
6th – Daniel Philpott
7th – William Novak
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