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Big fleet for Optimist SI's and Splash Nationals at Queen Charlotte

'Wild conditions in the Interislander South Island Optimist Championships. Photo by:'    Kimberley Somerville

The Port Marlborough Splash Nationals and the InterIslander Optimist Challenge/South Island Optimist Champs was the biggest regatta ever held at Queen Charlotte Yacht Club.

Late entries brought the total number of sailors to 159 including the green fleet.

12 races were scheduled over three days and were held in all conditions, from very light and shifty to very wet, windy and shifty. The third day saw beautiful conditions building to a stiff breeze that was challenging to some. Even with major course changes, the Race management Team lead by Gerald Martin managed to catch up and get all 12 Splash races in, and 11 for the Optimist Open Fleet.

There was a great team of local club members helped by some Auckland and Whangarei Club members, the Aucklanders were not used to pulling up anchors from 40 metres down, the comment was that they stayed warm in the rain. All the help was really appreciated.

Queen Charlotte Yacht Club had a clean sweep of the major placings, Declan Burn 1st, Josh Edmonds 2nd, Scott Fyfe 3rd.

1st girl was Laura Hemmingway, from Tauranga boating Club.

The open Optimists was won by Jayvee Buchanan of Charteris Bay Club, Olivia Mackay of Napier, 2nd, Keith Inglis, Taupo 3rd. Top QCYC sailor Taylor Burn was 4th.

The Interislander behind the fleet at the South Island Optimist Championships. Photo: -  Kimberley Somerville  

The first InterIslander Optimist Challenge, 'Island of Origin' was tied on equal points, the trophy going to the South Island as the individual winner, Jayvee Buchanan, is a South Islander.

Green Fleet Optimists, sailed in the inner Picton harbour was won by Carmen Haybittle, of Naval Point Yacht Club, Nick Tyne 2nd, Oakley Marsh 3rd, both sailors form Worser Bay Sailing Club. The Green Fleeters completed 7 scheduled races.

The Marlborough Food and Wine Welcome was a highlight of the regatta and set the friendly tone the night before racing commenced.

Great coffee, Mussels, Salmon, olives from the regatta sponsors stayed in the memory longer than one day of rain.

For a full report on the regatta click here

by Robert Burn


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10:13 AM Thu 5 Mar 2009 GMT

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