The New Zealand Team has wrapped up the 2012 Kiteboard Racing World Championships pleased with two top ten placings in what was this nation’s opening bid at a key regatta in the new Olympic sport of kiteboard racing.
David Robertson concluded the regatta in ninth position in a monster 135 strong men’s fleet, while Justina Sellers finished in tenth of 42 women. The order of the top ten was decided on the final day of racing staged overnight (NZT) in Cagliari, Italy.
World Championship rookies, the kiwi team approached this regatta with a view to learning as much as possible, and to measure up against the top kiteboard racing nations, and NZL Sailing Team Coach Dave Robertson reports that their results were pleasing.
'We have learnt so much in the two weeks we have been here. We came here to learn, so to walk away with a ninth and a 10th in the results is a real bonus. We are looking forward to getting home and growing the fleet in New Zealand this summer,' he says.
Dave Robertson describes the fourth and final day of racing; 'It was a tricky offshore 8-12 knots today with some super flat water. We both had chances to move up the standings and were looking forward to racing.'
Two quick fire races for both the men’s and women’s top ten would add to each sailors existing point-score from the series racing over the initial three days of the regatta.
'My first race was going well and I was in seventh position, but I made a bad error before the reach to the finish and dropped my kite in the water! By the time I re-launched the kite I was back in ninth,' explains Robertson.
'The last race of the day was also going well for me before I fell in the water at the bottom gate. I watched my closest rival in the standings sail past and take eighth overall and the 300 euros prize money, while I was literally paying for my mistake.'
Seller’s entered the final day of racing in tenth place improving throughout the regatta to secure a spot in the medal race series and the top ten.
Overnight she placed tenth in the first race, following that with a seventh place, however the leading pack opened a large gap in that race resulting in the last three placegetters, including the young kiwi rider, finishing outside the time limit and consequently scoring a DNF for the race.
'This was really disappointing for Justina as the seventh would have put her up a place or two,' says Robertson. 'However to be in the top ten girls in the World this early on is amazing. She has worked really hard all winter in her transition to kiting and deserved to be on the start line today for the medal race series.'
Any New Zealand sailors interested in kite racing are encouraged to get in touch with Dave Robertson: 'we have a good keen group involved now and will have a great fleet ready for 2013 Sail Auckland.'
New Zealand’s Final standings
Dave Robertson ninth
Justina Sellers 10th
Matt Taggart second Silver Fleet
Ben Turner fourth Silver fleet
Brad Walker 36th Bronze Fleet
For full results, official news, images and video see the regatta website: http://www.kitecagliari.com/index.php
by Jodie Bakewell-White
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6:29 AM Tue 9 Oct 2012GMT
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