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Editorial- Home and Away

by nzeditor@sail-world.com on 24 Apr 2006
Tom Ashley is the top placed Kiwi, holding fifth overall in the RS:X Board © Gilles Martin-Raget http://www.martin-raget.com/
Welcome to the Monday edition of Sail-World, it’s been rather a disjointed week or two in New Zealand with Easter and now Anzac Day, effectively giving a second Easter break for Kiwis.

With the holidays there has been plenty of action on the local sailing scene ranging from the Oceania qualifier for the ISAF Nations Cup, to the Javelin Nationals, Youthsail down in Christchurch, plus a raft of international events.

The 38th 2006 Semaine Olympique Française is being sailed in Hyeres, France with over 1,000 sailors from 50 nations competing. It is a big regatta by any standards, but even more so for the special place it occupies in the Olympic classes calendar. There is a strong contingent of Kiwi sailors competing – some to cement their Olympic campaigns, others to get theirs properly underway. The overnight results were not good – with a couple of exceptions and some of the 2006 Olympic Squad, have probably picked up their discard score for the regatta, already.

The Mens RS:X Boards are turning in another very solid performance. Last week we bought the news that Tom Ashley had been added to the YNZ 2006 Olympic Squad – and he has justified that confidence, lying in fifth place overall after the first day of racing, closely followed by ISAF #1 ranked sailor in that event, JP Tobin. In the Womens Board, Hayley Thom has also improved significantly after her result in Palma.

The Star class isn’t racing at Hyeres, but Hamish Pepper, who was another recent addition to the YNZ Olympic Squad, has turned in a sterling performance in the Eastern Hemisphere Star Championship. In three big Star regattas, Pepper has finished in the top ten in each – an outstanding effort for someone still in their first season in this highly competitive class.

We also feature another piece on Komutu, which won the 18ft World Championship in 1949, and has recently been restored and put back into sailing condition by Robin Williams and friends. We’ve posted more photos taken at her launch, which underscore the differences between this amazing sailing craft and the modern era.

Komutu is from another time in New Zealand sailing - a complete contrast to the plastic boats and off the shelf rigs and gear which are the norm nowadays. Komutu is from the era when to win you had to be able to design, build, rig and sail your boat – without regard to any rating rule – and carry as much sail as you dared. And, the race started at 2 o'clock!

For keelboat sailors, looking for an Australian regatta or two, you can enter both the Hahn Premium Race Week at Hamilton Island and Airlie Beach Race Week online now.

Good Sailing!

Richard Gladwell
NZ Editor

PS please keep the contributions coming from your event – all gratefully received – just email a report, photo and results or website to nzeditor@sail-world.com

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