Welcome to Sail-World.com's New Zealand newsletter for January 31, 2014
The summer of Sailing continues in New Zealand – although it is not the greatest summer on record.
In this edition of Sail-World.com’s newsletter, we feature another gallery of images and the final results from the 29er Nationals sailed at Murray’s Bay over the weekend.
The event attracted a good quality fleet and a run down the entry list reveals some quality names of junior sailing – and it is great to see these young sailors stepping into the high performance classes instead of lingering too long in the junior one-designs.
Certainly the conditions over the weekend provided a good test as the photos show.
Also being contested at the same time as the 29er's was the National Championship for the Nacra 17 - the new Mixed gender Olympic Multihull.
We have a report and images on that event as well in this edition.
On Saturday the Oceanbridge Sail Auckland regatta gets underway. Due to a direct clash of dates with the second round of the ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami, the international field is not as strong as organisers would have hoped, but nevertheless it is a great opportunity for New Zealand sailors to get some good racing in their home waters.
For many of the Olympic classes the regatta is a selection event for the 2014 ISAF World Sailing Championships to be held in Santander, later this year.
The Sail Auckland, in conjunction with one other regatta (usually the class Nationals) will determine who goes on to try and take the first round of 2016 Olympic Qualifying – which will be on the line at Santander.
All three of New Zealand’s current Olympic class World Champions will be competing, providing a good benchmark for others in the class.
Another of those competing will be Sara Winther in the Laser Radial, the Olympic Womens Singlehander. Sara is trying to raise funds via a unique scheme, which has proven highly successful in other areas. We carry the story and how you can help in this edition. Sara looked set to produce a top performance in the 2012 Olympics, being ranked 1 in her class in 2011, but a cycle accident to her coach Mark Orams, before the team left New Zealand hit her campaign hard, and she never really fired in the Olympic competition.
To her credit she has emerged from the experience with a very positive approach, and wants to qualify her event for New Zealand at the 2016 Olympics, at the ISAF Worlds in Santander, later this year.
Much is made of the drowning rate and water-safety generally at this time of the year – when the number of drownings can out-strip the road toll.
One of the issues with life jackets and buoyancy vests is that they often look very unattractive – which is a disincentive for kids at least to wear something that could save their lives.
Safety at Sea have announced the arrival of a new line in safety accessories from Baltic, who have produced a line of eye-catching PFD aimed at the female (older and young) market, plus anyone else who doesn’t like the look of standard PFD colours. Also in the range is a new inflatable lifejacket – again in cool colours.
We have featured three of this new range in this newsletter with another to be posted on www.sail-world.com later on Friday.
Staying with the water safety and getting out there theme, we have announced two great new prize opportunities for those attending this year’s Hutchwilco New Zealand Boatshow in may. One prize package to a value of $3000 in the form of a Viking profich 44 Evolution IV fishing kayak – for all those who book their tickets online.
There will also be a gateprize drawn to give away a $100,000 package consisting of a Stabicraft with a new Yamaha on the transom. It’s a great prize – and if you book online you will go in both draws.
Stay tuned for more details on how you can win these two great prizes.
Over the past few days there have been a couple of developments in the Volvo Ocean Race.
First was the announcement of a 24 hour stopover in The Hague to give Dutch sailing fans a chance to see the Volvo Ocean 65's up close, and show their affinity for the race, in which many of their top sailors have competed.
Second was the announcement of a fifth entry in the race, which will be a Turkish sponsored boat sailed by an international and US crew - all aged under 30 years. There is an international crew search underway. Quite who shakes out of that tree remains to be seen.
A Spanish entry is also rumoured to be close to announcing which will bring the entry list to six confirmed, with seven boats on order and maybe the possibility of a late eighth build. Rumour control has it that there are more teams in the hunt than there are boats available.
For sure this is developing into a very different, more commercial race than previous editions - whether it attracts the fans' imagination is yet to be seen.
So far none of the top three from the previous edition of the race have entered - depriving the race of a real benchmark, plus few of the recognised Round the World veterans seem to have returned - again another missing point of reference.
New Zealander Will Tiller trailed Sydney’s Andy Green for a time, but found a way past. - Warren Jones International Youth Match Racing Regatta - Bernie Kaaks Click Here to view large photo
Although it is early days, it is to be hoped that the crews will be topped up with race veterans, who do have round the world and particularly Southern Ocean experience - purely from a safety perspective. Other races, like the Rolex Sydney Hobart have instituted minimum experience levels for crew, and racing 40,000nm around the world is no walk in the park
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