420 Class Open Worlds 2014 Team are working hard to be the best prepared they can be for the Worlds in Travemunde, Germany, July 25 to August 3rd.
Like herding cats, to get keen 420 sailors to pose for a photo before hitting the water is never easy, especially with beautiful Winter sunshine, cloudless sky and the promise of a sailable breeze for the first day of the Yachting New Zealand Youth Clinic, Queen Birthday weekend, at Murrays Bay Sailing Club. The Coaching Clinic had 8 crews training hard, 6 crews going to the Open Worlds, 2 further crews helping them prepare.
The International Yachting Trust 420 Open Worlds team is lead by senior sailors, Taylor Burn and Taylor Balogh, and Sam Barnett and Zac Mertons in the boys fleet. This will be Taylor Burn's third 420 Worlds, Taylor Balogh, Sam and Zac's second.
The four girls fleets consist of Eliza Wilkinson and Kate Stewart, Brittany Wornall and Emma Stenhouse, Annabel Cave and Sophie von Waldow, Ava Mannering and Rosa Bella Hill. Eliza, Emma and Annabel's second Worlds, also in Valencia last year. The other girls will have a great experience as their first World Championships.
The sailors are spread from Christchurch, Picton, Napier, Tauranga and Auckland, with a ISAF dispensated German exchange student for some cultural help and diversity.
Yachting New Zealand are providing up and coming coach, James Turner, as Head Coach, James will also coach Taylor and Taylor, plus Emma and Brittany in a preWorlds warm up at the French 420 Nationals in Ouistreham, Normandy, also known as Sword Beach for the Allied D Day WW2 landings.
The New Zealand International Yachting Trust are providing assistance for the second coach, Tobias Koeb of Austria. Tobias was Austrian National 420 coach, and head coach at Queen Charlotte Yacht Club, Picton, several years ago. He also coached the NZL 420 Team at the 2012 Austrian World Open 420 Championships. Tobias will compliment James to ensure a strong NZL performance at this years Worlds.
The ISAF Youth Worlds in Tavira, Portugal, will provide a tough warm up for Sam Barnett and Zac Mertons before the Open Worlds, likewise the Crew of Annabel and Sophie will attend Warnemunde Week, a festival of sailing and intense training before the Worlds. The NZL Youth Girls 420 team of Olivia Mackay and Abby Goodwin will contest Tavira but miss this years Open Worlds.
' The sailors are all preparing well and working hard to give their best' say Ian Neely, Yachting NZ Youth Development Manager at the YNZ Clinic, ' the ones that put the effort in before the Worlds will reap the rewards'
Team Manager Rob Burn says 'this year the Class has been really well organised, plenty of quality training and coaching, the sailors are having fun as well putting in the effort. The comraderie is great to see'.
The International 420 Class is regarded as the largest two handed class, sailed primarily by youth sailors worldwide and around 400 sailors are expected at the Open Worlds from around 35 countries. '