FMJ Racing have dominated the 2012 New Zealand Match Racing Nationals against a very strong fleet.
The line up for the Nationals was tough with some great teams including Luna Rossa with former world number one Francesco Bruni on the helm, Emirates Team New Zealand coach Rod Davis and former America's Cup skipper and Volvo veteran Gavin Brady to name a few.
With this caliber of competition the regatta ranked for us as one of the toughest this year! For the first time racing was held in the new Elliot 7 youth boats replacing the Farr MRX from previous years. With fourteen entries one of the biggest fleets ever, racing started with a round robin.
The only loss of the round was to Gavin Brady who FMJ would meet later on in the finals. Winning the round robin FMJ chose to race Scott Dickson in the quarter finals. Not losing a match all day FMJ took this form through to the quarters and took down Dickson 2-0! The other three winning teams were Luna Rossa, Gavin Brady and Laurie Jury.
After demolishing Jury 3-0 in the semis of Match Race France a month earlier he was the obvious choice and FMJ went to work straight away not giving the Kiwi Match Team a sniff of the lead and once again dominated 3-0! After five races in the other semi Brady came out on top setting up for a young against old battle in the final. In a epic five match battle FMJ came out victorious, not without drama on the last downwind with penalties flying left right and center resulting in the boats finishing within seconds of each other!
This was a fantastic win for FMJ to rap up a solid year of dominating performances on the world stage picking up 8 victories! Unfortunately this year FMJ have not been given entry to the Monsoon Cup, the last event on the World Tour to try and better last years fifth place, with three other Kiwi teams already invited so now instead the focus will turn to multihulls and the Youth America's Cup trials in San Francisco in early February next year.
The team has a F18 and also the use of a 8.5 multihull to train on in the coming months. Watch this space for some multihull action!