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Yachting NZ-Yachting Digest for January - February 2011

by Yachting NZ on 3 Feb 2011
Yachting NZ

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In this issue:

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AC45 SPECIAL FEATURE - Trickle down effect?







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Introducing the Rewind™
  NEW! The only electric deck winch that trims sails in both directions. Mount control buttons where you sit, not at the winch-you'll never have to grind from the low side again! The Rewind operates just like a 2-speed winch-fast trimming in first gear and more power in second. Turn the red knob to engage the Rewind function, and you can trim in and ease out remotely without going to the winch and unwrapping the sheet. Perfect for yachts 10.6 to 14.6 m (35 to 50ft).

North Top 10 of 2010
1. 1,2,3 Etchell Worlds, Ireland
2. Six top ten winners, Hamilton Island Race Week, Grand Prix division
3. ETNZ wins Audi MedCup nearly 50 points ahead
4. Ranger's victory at the Supermaxi World Cup, and St Barths
5. Jayvee Buchanan adds Opti National title to his P-Class title
6. Four wins at BMW Auckland Regatta
7. Ten top ten winners Finn Gold Cup in San Fran
8. 17 of the top 20 finishers at the Melges 24 Worlds
9. North Sails powered Melges to 1-2-3 at 2010 World Champs in San Francisco this September
10. Farr 40s powered by North win three top regattas

Download the new North Sails screensaver! 


Special Feature

Trickle down effect?

Sea trialing the AC45 on Anniversary Day, 
Round Rangitoto Island, Auckland - (c) Gilles Martin-Raget, America's Cup Media

Auckland sailors have had a preview of the future of the America's Cup with the launch and instigation of sea trials of the wing-sailed AC45 catamaran, which is the forerunner to the next generation of America's Cup boats.

For decades technology utilised in the Cup has found its way into our local race fleet. "We have seen the demise of the last IACC class boat (monohulls) that evolved into large model yachts; with long and narrow displacement boats with huge bulb keels," says eminent multihull designer Tim Clissold. "Now the page has been turned to the future."

By that of course the specialised multihull designer means that this is the era of the multihull. What does the AC45 mean for the future of our local multihull designs?


About the AC45:

Built in the town of Warkworth less than an hour north of Auckland, the AC45 will be the centerpiece of the 2011-2012 America's Cup World Series, which will start mid-2011. The high-tech carbon fibre catamaran is the first in a fleet of the new and nimble 45-foot (13.7m) one-designs that is designed for speed and close racing.

"The biggest challenge with multihulls is learning how much to anticipate. With the AC45 being a big, powerful multihull capable of tripling the wind speed, your reactions and skills are accelerated. It's all about being ahead of the cycle," said ORACLE RACING skipper James Spithill. "I think the AC45 will enable all teams to advance to hard-core race mentality very quickly."

The AC45 was designed by the ORACLE RACING design and engineering team, to not only meet the racing criteria, but to also fit inside a 40-foot container, which is the shipping vessel for the America's Cup World Series.

"The boat was designed for all-around performance so it can be sailed in wide range of conditions, and that means the next America's Cup will see races start on time," said Ian Burns, ORACLE RACING design coordinator. "Plus it's a regatta boat, meant for lots of racing, so quick assembly and disassembly was a must to accommodate an active competition schedule."

The AC45 had to be robust enough to sail through a wide wind range, from 5 to 30 knots, as well as survive in the event of collisions, which are foreseen as teams learn to adapt to multihull closing speeds.

Utilizing the same technology used in the aerospace industry, the hulls are built in carbon epoxy with honeycomb cores, making them extremely stiff and light structures. The sandwich construction involves two carbon skins less than 1mm thick laminated over an ultra-light honeycomb core.


Analysis of the design rule

Tim describes the boats as two beam carbon catamarans with rotating wing mainsails, with options for jibs and extras. The extent of how foil borne the actual AC boats will be remains to be seen, and could be the key to victory.

"The design rule call is interesting for two reasons. First, that catamarans have been chosen. In any open multihull rule in Europe (really the heart of multihull development), trimarans ultimately dominate. The last Americas Cup event again proved this. Catamarans have probably been chosen as they are cheaper and easier to re-assemble and transport."

"Secondly, and more contentiously, is the wing sails. These are impossible to reef or easily 'park'. They are difficult to manage, compared to dropping a mainsail and jib on a conventional mast."

"Perhaps though the Americas Cup should be the epitome of current yacht design, and a wing sailed multihull is that."

"These AC boats are big cousins of the C Class cats (7.5m class) that have been around for decades with wing rigs. This is a class few have paid any attention to, and now those players are very valuable."

AC design principles and the NZ fleet

Tim says that the AC catamarans are not a radical design departure, but the culmination of developments over decades. "Yes they are extreme in that they have Americas Cup budgets and sailors behind them, where the local boats have more modest means, but catamarans with relatively small connecting beams have been around for 40 years or so."

He cites Paper Tigers, A-Class and the Great Barrier Express 8.5m as examples, with continuous development occurring to deliver the multihulls we see today.

"Most local multihulls have rotating masts, which form the leading edge of the mainsail 'wing', rather than just a support structure and a source or parasitic drag. Some boats such as Taeping and Pulse have reverse bows, which make sense in waves once you have sailed at speed."

Tim predicts that we will see some more extreme 'reverse' wave piercing bows on some refitted trimarans, such as 'Timberwolf' and 'Frantic Drift'.

However he believes that the solid wing sail though will have little trickle down potential to most boat owners.

"About twenty years ago an English firm called Walker Wing sail built trimarans with solid wing rigs, all computer controlled. At least one made the trip across the Atlantic successfully. The rigs were stay-less and feathered if not controlled for forward power. The boat concept was ahead of its time, but the hull platform (in my opinion) was dated. But the theory of a rig that feathers into the wind is fine, but it is a brave skipper who would be happy not to be able to get rid of the sail area in the wind (read storm...) Besides our racing and cruising safety rules demand a mainsail that can be effectively reefed.

"Large wing masts or complete solid wing sails are unlikely to suddenly appear due to control problems on a mooring or in a marina."

Curved foils - which have been in use on the ORMA 60 trimarans for more than a decade will have some application on race multihulls. "The boats need to be light to take the gains," says Tim.

"Any performance multihull owner has already discovered just how much fun sailing these boats is. Sailing with minimal heeling, at wind speed and beyond, with wonderful response and control, is what make their owners so enthusiastic about their craft. If you haven't experienced the thrill, get to know a multihull owner and get an invite for a sail. If you only ever sailed keel boats then this is a new way to go sailing."

"It has just taken the Americas Cup teams a while to catch up with what many of us have enjoyed for years!"


Timberwolf: a case study


The 9.2m trimaran has undergone several incarnations in its years on the water, and will be relaunched in 2-3 months with a wave piercing bow and curved foils.

"We are just finishing painting the new amas then have some rigging and finishing to go," says owner Tim Willets.

"Our boat's shape is greatly influenced by the BMW Oracle tri from the last AC. They call it a wave piercing bow, and it also features on the new AC 45 cat. We also have similar bow and stern overhangs to the BMW Oracle tri. Our curved foils are also influenced by the Tri, in an attempt to generate lift."

Tim says that asymmetric foils such as those used on the AC45 are a definite go fast idea that should be incorporated in any future multihulls and he also foresees that in the future there may be less focus on the 'cruisability' of the multihull fleet in favour of more racer oriented configuration with no cabin.



Editorial: a response to our November issue

Why the SIMRAD? Or "One old fool ponders the meaning of sailing."

Over the last five years I have sailed Communiqu?, our aging Farr 9.2 family cruiser in the SSANZ organised series of races around the Hauraki Gulf. In this I have endeavoured to encourage my adult children to sail with me. In so doing, I would I have fulfilled a life time's work to create my own crew.

The reality is a little different. Today's young people lead full and busy lives doing what they want to do. It is not that they do not like sailing, or that they are not accomplished sailors in their own right, it is just that if they are sailing, they feel their father will do his best work at home helping their mother. John aka Fossil in commiserating with me on this on the forum commented that the grand children can be equally harsh. Is this the best that a "baby boomer" can hope for after a sailing career spanning 45 years?

Fortunately I am not confined to fireside dreams of Grand Prix sailing in Seahorse Magazine but can plan and prepare for a challenging sail much closer to home. In this lies the challenge and the appeal of the SIMRAD series. I have done WL sailing and harbour reaching courses to death.

This series of three races around the Hauraki Gulf culminating in an extended 80 mile race takes place through the winter months. A sense of anticipation is evident in the forum before each race and I am a full participant in this speculation as I check our safety gear, prepare warm clothing, organise the necessary over supply of food and remind the family that no other commitments will be considered for the weekend. The free weather sites are eagerly surfed and discussed. I go through the boat and consider what contribution each item on board may make or would it be better on the already groaning storage racks of my garage.

On race day I stride across the Westhaven car park with a light step looking for my partner in this adventure. Stew has shared ocean racing adventures around the Pacific with me for more than 30 years and we make a companionable "greypower "team. The sail to the starting area is a good time to start on the food and to look at the sky in speculation. The surrounding boats are noted and their PHRF ratings compared. Surely even the PHRF committee must know "that boat could not in all reason be on that handicap?"

In a very short time we are in the starting area and the first signals are displayed, it is time to apply; the planning, the preparation, and to savour the buzz of the largest racing fleet of the year on Auckland's harbour.

It is to be hoped that this series does not suffer the death by a thousand cuts at the hands of its imitators.

It would be wonderful if one of the rating systems, IRC or ORC gained traction outside the Grand Prix fleet.

In the meantime it is simply the best show in town. Fendall Halliburton


General news


I'd rather be racing

A memoir of Bay of Islands Sailing Week by Lesley Haslar

(c)Christine Webb, BOI Sailing Week

TeamVodafoneSailing screamed across the Bay from Opua at over 34 knots. Safer to stay clear of this missile - she was almost airborne. On the other side of the coin, M1 ripped off a spreader in the 2nd race on Day One - then Tongue Twister experienced compression and 'there went the mast'.

But wait there's more. Advantage lost-it in the last race (Passage Division), literally lost it - with the mast over the side in three pieces. Playbuoy and This Way Up had a confrontation earlier in the regatta - with the latter over in the Boat Yard for the rest of the week.

But the yachties gave the 2011 Bay of Islands Sailing Week '10 out of 10' as a successful and fun Regatta. Boat racing has its risks; skippers and crews know how to handle the bad times, the competitive racing is what it's all about. Variable winds from Mother Nature are part of the challenge, pushing the boundaries - pushing these sailing machines to their limit.

A Westpac Spinnaker for the Young 88 Division is new to the Bay Regatta, following the "yellow Jersey concept" in cycling. Initially a draw for the boat to carry it on day one - the winning boat each day carrying the spinnaker the following day; an overall winner takes the Westpac Spinnaker home. And the winner is - Vaughan Clark on Sweeney Todd.

New Zealand is the home of many top class yachties. Yacht racing is significant to our economy and yachting regattas are vital in producing skilful international yachting representatives. A three day regatta in the Bay of Islands offers the intense competition and challenges required to take these yachtsmen and women to the top. 133 boats registered to do just that - test their skills against other enthusiastic yachties from all over the country.

This is a special Regatta, only possible through the generosity of loyal sponsors and the big heartedness of volunteers. Organisation by the committee is remarkable, each one with his/her separate responsibility; everything functions like a well oiled clock.


Georgia's Sailing Week report
The Georgia Racing crew enjoying their sailing

From JIM FARMER - Three days of excellent racing in varied conditions saw consistent performance by GEORGIA ONE in the annual Bay of Islands Race Week. Sailing in Division A against much larger boats (notably Wired, Sea Harmony and Sababa - all 52 feet - and Carrera, 49 feet, GEORGIA ONE at 43 feet was the baby of the fleet but was only beaten on the water once by Sababa, twice by Carrera and not at all by Sea Harmony in 7 races. On rating, GEORGIA ONE was first in the fleet in both IRC and General Handicap.

The 2011 National IRC Championship was decided in this regatta by racing Divisions A and B off the same start line and over the same courses and then aggregating the IRC entries in both divisions for the purpose of determining the 2011 Champion. First and second were two 34 footers - the MRX North Sails, skippered by Simon Minoprio and aided by well known sailors Rodney Keenan and Martin Hannon, came out on top 2 points ahead of previous winner Hard Labour (a Farr 10-20, complete with revolutionary new 3Di sails (the next step from 3DL). GEORGIA ONE was 5 points further back in 3rd place, the only boat from Division A to feature in the top 6 places. Our congratulations go to Simon and his crew who sailed well in conditions that on the third day did not favour small boats.

Many at the regatta commented on the consistency of GEORGIA ONE's performance in all races. Starts were excellent and her upwind speed against the larger 52s was impressive (generally in the range of 7.8-8.4 knots at 19-21 apparent), more often than not being second boat around the top mark in the windward-leewards, behind Wired. She sailed particularly well on the final day when conditions were trying, gusts at over 30 knots and the wind throughout in the 20-28 knot range. Contrary to most of the fleet (which included one dismasting), GEORGIA ONE suffered only minimal damage - a tear to the foot of the runner, which did not however prevent its continued use.

The new rudder, designed by Nick Holroyd from Team New Zealand, proved to be a huge improvement on the original rudder and held the boat steady in the gusty conditions. One of the tricky features of this boat had always been the ability of the rudder to break away with virtually no notice - happily now something of the past. Thanks to Nick who, it will be recalled, also designed the new rig and keel when GEORGIA ONE returned from the US in 2005 and was transformed from IMS to IRC. It will be remembered also that in 2006 GEORGIA ONE was the winner of the National IRC championships and in 2008 she missed from winning again on a count back. That defeat was avenged last year in Wellington when the new 52, GEORGIA, won the title.

Next regatta for GEORGIA RACING is the Middle Harbour YC Audi Regatta in Sydney on 5 and 6 March in the 52.


Around New Zealand: The biggest challenge yet

SSANZ has set the date for a two handed race around New Zealand. Commencing on 25 February 2012, it will start and finish in Auckland, with stopovers in Mangonui, Stewart Island and Napier.

Entrants will need to meet Cat 1 standard and complete a suitable qualifying voyage. To register your interest email and be kept informed as things develop.  

Etchells fleet thrives in Auckland CBD

From NORTH SAILS - A resurgence of the Etchells class in Auckland is exciting to see. There had been a number of small and isolated fleets racing at Gulf Harbour, Bucklands Beach and Pine Harbour and when the group at Gulf Harbour encountered issues the Class Association were prompted into action.

"A developer blocked access to where we get at our crane, basically unless we did something the fleet was going to die," explains Trevor Swinburne, Etchells Class Association representative. They decided that gathering the active racers together into one fleet was the way to go, and with fourteen Etchells now based at Westhaven there are ten to a dozen boats racing every Tuesday.

"We set up an arrangement where we got all the boats that wanted to race, and we amalgamated all the fleets under one banner at Westhaven," says Trevor. The key to making it successful was providing owners and crew with easy, enjoyable one-design racing.

"To be part of our programme includes storage for your boat on the hard at Westhaven Marina. We are not catering for those who don't want to race, and you don't get the boat storage as an individual - you have to be part of our fleet."

Racing is on Tuesday nights and it is super easy for competitors. "The boat gets put in the water for you the night before, you arrive on your boat in the afternoon, and it's there ready for you to sail. We do three short, sharp races then the next day the boat gets taken out of the water for you, washed, put on the cradle, cover put on, put away," explains Trevor. "So the trick with it is to make it as easy as we can for people who want to go sailing."

A number of former or current owners of bigger, successful keelboats have been tempted into the true one-design racing on offer, including John Kensington, Anatole Masfen, John Melville and Rob Bassett. Former World Champ and current NZ National Champ Andrew Wills, Derek Scott, Matt G Kelway, Stuart MacKinven and others from the Auckland loft of North Sails are getting on the action too.

"Derek from the one design loft sails with Alistair Gair - they got second in the Worlds a couple of years back and have been regularly in the top five in Australia," says Trevor of the current Australian mid-winter champion team.

"Andrew helms the boat with Anatole Masfen, and the others from the loft come out on a regular basis on other boats simply because they can get good easy racing that's one class one design," says Trevor.

Tuesday was chosen because the Class recognised that a number of their sailors also own or sail on other boats, and wanted to avoid a conflict with Wednesday nights, Friday rum racing and weekend racing. Any weekend Etchells racing, which is irregular, is staged as an independent event, keeping racing to Tuesday nights.

Internationally Etchells racing is popular and with the 2012 World Championships to be held off the Heads of Sydney Harbour local sailors have even more reason to get back in a boat. The class is keen to see a full allocation of kiwi boats line up in Sydney two years from now. The way things are going, that shouldn't be a problem!


Important information regarding Safety Inspections

Skippers seeking a Safety Inspection are advised that YNZ has published some amendments to the Yachting New Zealand Safety Regulations as well as a copy of the Safety Inspectors checklist which can be referred to as a compliance summary.

The recent amendments to New Zealand Safety Regulations include small changes to wording for clarification and also some changes to requirements. Category 3 is most affected, but there are some changes for other categories also, and an amendment sheet is now available for download from our website alongside the main Safety Regs download.

Items that feature in the amendments relate to... cooking stove requirements, propulsion engine requirements, fire extinguishers, lifelines, tools and spare parts, navigation systems and registration numbers.

Yacht Inspectors use a check-list when completing an on-board inspection and this is now available, for owners to refer to as a safety compliance summary.

Skippers are obligated to be conversant with all aspects, and understand all the safety rules and a complete copy of the Yachting New Zealand Safety Regulations can be purchased in booklet form from our store, or can be downloaded in pdf from the Safety Regulations page.


Are our cruising grounds safe?

Andrew Clouston, YNZ National Programmes Manager, gives us a timely update on changes to aquaculture legislation which have the potential to significantly impact on our recreational cruising grounds.

The Aquaculture Legislation Amendment Bill (No 3) was introduced to Parliament on 9th November 2010. The purpose of the Bill is to provide an efficient legislative and regulatory framework that enables the sustainable development of aquaculture within the coastal marine area. The Bill is part of a wider programme of reform that includes non-regulatory measures to provide for a more active role for government in the development and management of aquaculture.

The amendment bill as it stands is very pro-aquaculture and poses some threats to the access and availability of the waters we spend so much time in. It will require clubs and regions to be much more proactive in letting their regional councils know what beaches, bays and stretches of water should remain free from aquaculture development, because the councils will be responsible for carrying out tests on all new applications around the recreational use of the area before they go for public submission.

1.the current system of only being able to apply for consents to develop new marine farms in designated aquaculture zones (AMA's) is being removed and replaced by a system where the entire coast is available for application for new farms and the applications will be handled directly through the RMA process and the regional coastal plan.
2.allowing the Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture the right to change regional coastal plans (effectively giving the minister the right to overrule regional councils)
3.making sure that all applications for marine farms are publicly notified
4.that adequate tests are in place to assess the value of the space being applied for by marine farmers in terms of recreational value to boaties
There are summary sheets available on the Ministry of Fisheries website that detail the changes and their intention.
Everyone should take time to read the sheets and encourage their club and/or regional council to submit any concerns they have to the government. The submission deadline is the 11th of Feb 2011.

YNZ will also be preparing a submission on behalf of all our members, however it is important clubs get involved as they can speak from a local perspective.

We also invite Clubs and individuals, who have not already done so, to send your concerns to us at Yachting New Zealand so that we may include them in our submission. Email Andrew at  

Fish farming threatens recreational waters off Coromandel

Public submissions are currently sought from the Ministry of Fisheries on a proposed fish farming zone off the Western coast of the Coromandel.

Three people appointed by the Ministry of Fisheries, including includes Hon Sir Doug Kidd as Chair, Mark Farnsworth and Justine Inns, make up the Aquaculture Ministerial Advisory Panel and they want to hear from the public about the potential environmental, economic, cultural, and social benefits and costs of the proposal.

Commonly used recreationally by many yachties and boaties, fish farming in this stretch of water will almost certainly have a significant impact on recreational users.

"This is an inappropriate location for a marine farm and it will be important for clubs, individuals and regions to stand up and say so," says Andrew Clouston, National Programmes Manager for YNZ.

Public consultation will run from 17 December 2010 to 9 February 2011. As part of the consultation, the panel will spend time in the Waikato region in late January. Panel hearings in Thames, Coromandel Township and Auckland have been scheduled between 9 and 12 February 2011 to allow the public to present their submissions in person.

Written submissions are due on the 9th of February. 

Consultation documents, maps and information on the proposed zone are all available hereon the Ministry of Fisheries website.  

Richmond seeks Patrol Boat and Skipper

Do you know someone who owns a launch, loves boating and would like to get involved with one of Auckland's premier keelboat yacht clubs? Richmond Yacht Club is looking for a new 'patrol boat' (complete with skipper).

The patrol boat is required on fortnightly Wednesday evenings and eight weekends throughout the summer, plus fortnightly Sunday afternoons throughout the winter - 30 races in all.

This is a voluntary position, however the benefits to the patrol boat owner are significant. Free use of the RYC marina berth (situated right outside the club at Westhaven Marina), value $7000 per annum and reimbursement of yacht club related diesel expenses.

For more information please send your name and contact details to or contact Rodney Janes (Commodore) on 021 347 334


Round North Island Entrant Profile - Expedition Coppelia

Sailing in the Round North Island race is the culmination of a life dream for Sally Garrett and Rob Croft, and it's also a potential warm up for the ultimate goal of the Round New Zealand race.

Both have previously set their minds on New Zealand's toughest race - Rob has completed it once and made a second unsuccessful event, and Sally tried but failed to make it to the start line.

This time, thanks to a lot of hard work and commitment, they are virtually guaranteed to be there - the check list of tasks completed and those still to be done is on their website,  - the completely rebuilt boat is looking great - and they have a sponsor in the shape of Expedition software. (

Like all yachting campaigns, and immense amount of money and time has been poured into getting their vessel, called Coppelia, prepared.

"The boat had not been raced for nearly ten years when we decided to campaign it," says Sally. "We spent a lot of time getting it back to a racing mode. Rob has completed a lot of interior structural work, including a new navigation station, modifications to the galley, modifications to the sailing equipment as I am only 5ft 6 and could not reach things. I have worked on the electronics and built us a custom made chartplotter to run Expedition. As well as all that, we have a complete new set of sails minus a number 1, and we are very grateful to Tasman Bay Navigation Systems, sole providers of Expedition for their help with these."

There is never a dull moment in two handed racing, and Sally says that as a woman, taking part with just one other person means you are less likely to be sidelined to the rail.

The combination have had successes sailing two handed, and as skipper Sally's best ever keelboat race result came as skipper of the Young 88 division of the 2009 SIMRAD.

They enjoy the RNI format, because it starts and ends in one place, and friends and supporters can travel the ports following us - very important to Sally because her partner Neil is heavily involved in the campaign.

First entries received for next Hamilton Island regatta

It was only a few months before the inaugural edition of what is now Audi Hamilton Island Race Week was staged in 1984 that the then revolutionary 83ft maxi yacht, Condor, made the headlines locally and internationally by taking line honours in the Sydney Hobart race. Now the big boat is back in the news - as the first entry for this year's Audi Hamilton Island Race Week, which has been confirmed for 19 to 27 August. Organisers are advising competitors that after lengthy discussions regarding a proposed date change for this year's regatta it has been decided that the formula which has been in place for more than 20 years should remain. The traditional Audi Hamilton Island Race Week welcome parties will be held on Friday, 19 August and the first day of sailing is scheduled for the following day. The always entertaining trophy presentation dinner will be held on the evening of Saturday, 27 August following the final day of competition.

At the time of her launching in England, Condor was recognised as the world's most technologically advanced ocean racing yacht: she was the largest of her type, built from Kevlar over a unique aluminium space-frame and boasted the tallest single-piece aluminium mast.

Following her Hobart race win in 1983 she claimed line honours a second time in 1986. During her Grand Prix racing life she was credited with being the only yacht to take line honours in all of the world's major offshore events.

These days the grand old lady has retired into a more leisurely life as a charter yacht in Queensland's tropical Whitsunday Islands region, and with the wonderful waters of the Whitsundays being the course area for Audi Hamilton Island Race Week, it's not surprising that Condor has made some impressive appearances at the regatta in recent times.

In last year's Audi Hamilton Island Race Week, Condor grabbed the limelight by having four likeable larrikins from the outback mining town of Mt Isa in the crew, and this year the yacht's owner, Dave Molloy, has got the jump on everyone by having Condor registered as the first entry for the big event.

Last year the 'Four Amigos', as they became known, formed Mt Isa Cruising Yacht Club over a few beers in a pub 600 kilometres from the sea, then, while having zero sailing experience, turned up at Audi Hamilton Island Race Week 2010 looking to compete - because they wanted to 'start at the top'. By the end of the regatta they'd done every race aboard Condor and somehow managed to bob up at just about every social function during the week. They were interviewed on Race Week Radio, made headlines in the national media and had a jingle written about them. Additionally, their front-man and club 'commodore', Greg Fietz, decided to impress everyone at home by having his photo taken with international television star Dannii Minogue and her new baby, plus many of the attractive models who were on the island for the Audi Hamilton Island Race Week fashion parades. His reasoning for this effort was simple: 'In Mt Isa the ratio of men to women is seven-to-one, so to land a good one you have to stand out.'


- Quarter Ton Cup Reunion regatta 5-6 and 11-13 March
- Panmure 2 Handed 3 Legged weekend 11 -13 March
- Kerikeri Yacht Club 75th anniversary and Panmure Yacht Club 99th anniversary - both clubs are on the look out for photos and memorabilia from bygone years.



Big turn out expected for the 30th annual National Keelboat Championship

On 31 March, New Zealand's best keelboat crews from across all clubs and divisions, and a handful of brave overseas teams, will come together on the Waitemata Harbour to compete over three days for the title of The 2011 National Keelboat Champion.

This will be the 30th year an event of this type has been run by the Royal Akarana Yacht Club with previous winners reading like a 'who's who of world yacht racing'. Among them Dean Barker, Russell Coutts and Chris Dickson.

If you think your crew has got what it takes or want see how you compare against he best crews in the country, and some of the world's leading sailors entries are still open for the New Zealand 2010 National Keelboat champion.

Details and entry forms can be found at

Sailing School sets up in Torbay

Elements Sailing School has set up camp in Torbay on Auckland's North Shore to give dinghy sailors and prospective dinghy sailors and windsurfers an opportunity to have a sailing experience, coaching and boat hire.

"We live in the City of Sails but there are very few places in Auckland where you can roll up and go for a sail," says Elements owner, Peter Head. "Our boats are modern and well equipped, and we can teach you how to sail, or take you on an adventure sail in the Hauraki Gulf."

He says that it is great to do with friends or family, but those who are by themselves can join an existing group.

"It's one of the easiest ways of getting out on the water - we provide all the gear so there is no fuss with trailers and parking, and our costs - $45 per hour for boat hireage, and $60 for coaching, are very reasonable," says Peter.

"Very experienced sailors and complete learners are welcome - you'll enjoy the versatility and agility of the Topaz boats and the more people we get out on the water the better." Six Topaz Uno sailing dinghies are available, and several windsurfers. Booking is essential.

Elements will be based in Torbay on alternating weekends.

BMW Auckland Regatta

The BMW Auckland Regatta has become recognized as one of the premier sailing events on the New Zealand keelboat racing calendar and in 2011 will take place from 18-20 March. New features for 2011 are:

- Beach Party at Motuihe
- Boat of the Series award from KPMG
- A more central racecourse, located closer to marinas  

The BMW Auckland Regatta is jointly run by the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron and Bucklands Beach Yacht Club. Entries are invited from all keelboat clubs throughout New Zealand. 2014PredictWind.comProtector - 660 x 82

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Knight Frank 18ft skiff, who recently launched a new boat, has introduced some of the latest products from Harken Knight Frank 18ft skiff, who recently launched a new boat, has introduced some of the latest products from Harken onboard. Harken has released two new products in recent months that further expands on their top quality range of sailing hardware.
Posted on 27 Feb 2014
Thunderstorms rain on the parade on Day 3 of Harken International
The penultimate day of competition in the 2013 Harken Youth International Match Racing Championship. . The penultimate day of competition in the 2013 Harken Youth International Match Racing Championship hosted by the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club only saw the completion of stage one on a benign Pittwater today with just four matches sailed.
Posted on 24 Nov 2013
The Professional - Part 3 of a conversation with Ken Read
Sail-World's US Editor, David Schmidt talks with Ken Read, President of North Sails, in the third of a three part series Ken Read served as the skipper of Puma Ocean Racing’s entries in the 2008-2009 and 2011-2012 editions of the Volvo Ocean Race (VOR), where the team finished in second and third place, respectively. Read has worked in various capacities for North Sails since 1996, and in January of 2013 he was promoted to the high-profile role of President.
Posted on 2 Nov 2013
The Professional - Part 2 of a conversation with Ken Read
Dennis Conner shoulder tapped Read to serve as his helmsman during the 2000 and 2003 'Stars & Stripes' campaigns, Dennis Conner shoulder tapped Read to serve as his helmsman during the 2000 and 2003 'Stars & Stripes' campaigns, and Read has also served on the afterguard of plenty of high-profile big-boat campaigns, including George David’s all-conquering 'Rambler'. More recently, Read served as the skipper of Puma Ocean Racing’s entries in the 2008-2009 and 2011-2012 editions of the Volvo Ocean Race (VOR).
Posted on 31 Oct 2013
America's Cup - Insider's view- Close enough to touch
North Sails President and TV Commentary Team member, Ken Read gives his insider's view of the Louis Vuitton Cup: North Sails President and TV Commentary Team member, Ken Read gives his insider's view of the Louis Vuitton Cup: Can Artemis make this an event? Does Luna Rossa need to worry about more close calls like the wing skin tearing? Just two of the many questions surrounding the Louis Vuitton Semi finals. The two boats are right outside my office window waiting for the dock out presentation.
Posted on 8 Aug 2013
Christoph Burger to be on board of North Sails Switzerland
Christoph Burger, with immediate effect, will be on board of North Sails to enforce their presence in Switzerland. Christoph Burger, with immediate effect, will be on board of North Sails to enforce their presence in Switzerland. He is born in a sailmaking-family and has 20 years experiences in sailing. He will complete the teams around Daniel Schroff in the German-speaking part of Switzerland and Pierre-Yves Jorand in the French-speaking part.
Posted on 17 Jun 2013
Harken Youth International- RNZYS crew wins by a 3 second margin
Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron won the Harken Youth International Match Racing Championship 2013 Scott Barnes and his team of Jackson MacFarlane, Rawiri Geddes and Michael Boucher representing the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron win the Harken Youth International Match Racing Championship 2013! Barnes beat Adam Middleton (RPNYC) 2 nil in this afternoon’s final. Barnes took the first race by 36 seconds, and in the second Middleton came back on the second beat. The wind was shifty and Midd
Posted on 24 Feb 2013
Barnes & Gilmour lead on Day 2 of the RNZYS Harken Youth International
Scott Barnes (RNZYS) and Sam Gilmour (RFBYC) still hold the lead with 8 wins each on day two of the RNZYS Harken Youths Scott Barnes (RNZYS) and Sam Gilmour (RFBYC) still hold the lead with 8 wins each on day two of the RNZYS Harken Youth International Match Racing Championships 2013. After another day of impressive close racing on the water, the duo hold a two point advantage over the four next placed skippers all tied on 6 wins each.
Posted on 22 Feb 2013