New Zealand's reigning World Champions in the 49er and 470 have shown their class and delivered two gold medals at ISAF Sailing World Cup Mallorca which wrapped up today on the Spanish Island of Mallorca.
Peter Burling and Blair Tuke secured the 49er gold with ease, while Jo Aleh and Polly Powrie came from behind to topple the French leaders and take the Women’s 470 gold on the final day.
Another three kiwis crews also finished in the top ten including Andy Maloney, Sam Meech (Laser) and Paul Snow-Hansen and Daniel Willcox (Men’s 470). 49er:
Despite an average first day on the water at this opening regatta on the European circuit, Peter Burling and Blair Tuke hit the lead in the 49er skiff class on day three and only extended from there. Today, with 6, 1, 8 in their three medal races, the kiwis took a well deserved victory and stand atop the podium.
Burling and Tuke have now won every major 49er regatta they’ve contested since winning Olympic silver in 2012 including the 2013 World and Europeans Championships.
After today’s racing Tuke said, 'It was really fun. We sailed really well and did what we had to do in the first race after the lead we’d created throughout racing this week. We then managed to get a win and it wasn’t such a great final race but it was a lot of fun.'
Burling echoed his team mate, 'We obviously went into the Medal Race with a pretty comfortable margin but we still had a bit of work to do just to finish it off. We managed to do that in the first race and then we had a bit of fun.'
Tuke added, 'What we’ve got going on is going pretty well and we haven’t been beaten in a while so we’ll just keep doing what we’re doing. We certainly had our work cut out this week but we sailed better and better as it went on.' 470 Women:
With Camille Lecointre and Helene DeFrance seven points out in the front, and just one race to run, the Women’s 470 gold looked like a tough ask for Jo Aleh and Polly Powrie going into today.
Yet no one could catch them for silver, so the kiwis had nothing to lose and they went out and won the medal race. When the French pair came home in sixth the victory was New Zealand’s and Aleh and Powrie, who are ISAF Female Sailor of Year, could celebrate another gold medal performance.
Aleh explained the day, 'It was a pretty stressful Medal Race, it went well for us but it was pretty hard work.
'The French were seven points clear of us and we knew we had to get three points between us to beat them. We stayed really close and came out of the start better, from there we just tried to sail the race, get away and get boats in between and we just managed to get enough boats in.
'It took us a while to fire, we were a bit slow at the beginning but we’ve come right by the end.' 470 Men:
Paul Snow-Hansen and Daniel Willcox lined up today in the Men’s 470 medal race closing out the six day regatta on a high note with a second place on the water in the high pressure finale. It wasn’t enough however to change their final result of sixth overall in the 78 boat fleet. Laser:
Andy Maloney has finished the regatta in fifth place in the Laser class, impressively clawing his way through the pack after poor results on day one. Sam Meech also sailed with the top ten today and after placing seventh in the Laser medal race he has finished the regatta in 10th.
All three NZL Sailing Team Laser campaigners had some moments of brilliance through the ranging conditions and changing fortunes here in Palma and will head into the next ISAF World Cup Regatta - in France in two weeks – with a plan to capitalise on the lessons learned here.
Alexandra Maloney and Molly Meech, like plenty of others, didn’t have their best start to the regatta, yet they did improve their standing throughout the series simply running out of time at the end and finishing just outside the medal race cut in 11th place. Finn:
Josh Junior and Andrew Murdoch were denied their final chance to make the top ten on the penultimate day with no racing for the Finns yesterday; Junior closes the regatta in 16th and Murdoch in 25th. Nacra 17:
Gemma Jones and Jason Saunders have finished the regatta in 14th place. The Nacra is a new Olympic class and the kiwi pair have shown that they’re on pace with the leaders after delivering a couple of race wins during this regatta. Women’s RS:X:
Natalia Kosinska has finished the regatta in 12th place. A race win early on and a string of top ten race results are encouraging for New Zealand’s top female windsurfer.
From here the NZL Sailing Team head to Hyeres, France for the next ISAF Sailing World Cup Regatta which runs from April 19th – 26th. ISAF Sailing World Cup Palma; New Zealand’s Final Results
For full results right click here Women’s 470 (47 boats)
1stJo Aleh and Polly Powrie - NZL Sailing Team Men’s 470 (78 boats)
6thPaul Snow-Hansen and Daniel Willcox – NZL Sailing Team 49er (79 boats)
1stPeter Burling and Blair Tuke – NZL Sailing Team
33rd (8th in silver fleet) Marcus Hansen and Josh Porebski – NZL Sailing Team
53rd (1st in bronze fleet) Ben Goodwin and Sam Bullock 49erFX (49 boats)
11thAlexandra Maloney and Molly Meech – NZL Sailing Team Finn (92 boats)
16thJosh Junior – NZL Sailing Team, Finn
24thAndrew Murdoch – NZL Sailing Team, Finn Laser (144 boats) no racing today
5thAndy Maloney – NZL Sailing Team
10thSam Meech – NZL Sailing Team
26thThomas Saunders – NZL Sailing Team
65th Andrew McKenzie Women’s RS:X (56 boards)
12thNatalia Kosinska – NZL Sailing Team, RS:X Women Nacra 17 (73 boats)
14thGemma Jones and Jason Saunders – NZL Sailing Team Coaches and support:
Jez Fanstone, Nathan Handley, John Cutler, Hamish Willcox, Steve Erickson, Peter Evans and Will Howden About the NZL Sailing Team
The NZL Sailing Team includes New Zealand’s top Olympic campaigners who have made the top 20% in their most recent (respective) class World Championships or pinnacle event and have shown consistency of performance over the year including other significant Championships.
Yachting New Zealand’s High Performance Programme is focussed on winning medals at the Olympics in Rio 2016 and Tokyo 2020.
NZL Sailing Team sailors all started out at grass roots yacht clubs around the country and with commitment, dedication and drive have risen to be world class athletes; they work hard in the gym, train long hours on the water and are supported by great coaches.