Day Two of the Splash World Sailing Championship sailed off picturesque Takapuna Beach in Auckland, New Zealand, delivered more exciting conditions for the fleet of 73 youth sailors.
Six races have been sailed and provisional results show that Ben Lutze (NZL) now holds a lead of five points over Michael Kamp (NED). George Lane (NZL) is in third position.
The formidable New Zealand sailor from Taipa in Northland, who won this event in 2008, thrives in challenging conditions. He has now won four out of six races, and secured a second place. An unfortunate tenth came down to a pair of broken hiking straps before the start of Race Six, and is now included as his drop.
'Ben’s consistent performance in these heavier races may be a winning ingredient,' says race spokesperson Helen McKenzie, 'however Michael Kamp is hard on his heels, and overall the points spread in the top ten is still relatively narrow – we could see positions change as conditions are expected to ease from tomorrow.'
Like yesterday, today’s weather served up winds in the high teens, and a short sharp chop.
'Today really was a great day’s sailing, and very rewarding for those who enjoy these types of conditions,' says Helen McKenzie.
Fourth through tenth places are held respectfully by Bart Sluijter (NED), reigning champion Declan Burn (NZL), Chris Steele (NZL), Michael Cate (NZL), Jock Coppejans (BEL), Maarten Kuipers, and Matthieu de By (NED).
Laura Hemingway (NZL) has extended her lead out to 14 points over the next female in the rankings, Nienke Reina Jorna (NED) who won the women’s event last year.
The South Wester is predicted to die out overnight, and will be replaced with a variable five knots tomorrow morning, with sea breezes kicking in for the afternoon. Thursday and Friday are likely to bring Northwest winds of 10-15 knots.
The final two qualifying races are scheduled for tomorrow, and the fleet will be divided into Gold and Silver for Thursday’s and Friday’s races.
The Splash Dinghy is a fast, modern single handed dinghy designed for sailors under the age of 19. Favoured for its ability to build confidence in mostly teenage sailors, the boat is a step up from the Optimist, and a precursor and training vessel for the Laser class raced by both men and women at the Olympic Games.
The line up at the 2010 Splash World Sailing Championships includes 73 youth sailors from 12 countries. New Zealanders have been world champions in the class in 2000, 2004, 2006, 2008 and 2009, and in 2009 New Zealand also won the Nations Cup at the Splash World Champs held in Europe.
Racing proper started at 11am on Monday 4 January, and conditions permitting, 13 races will be held, finishing on Friday 8 January, and followed by a prizegiving on the Friday evening.
Takapuna Boating Club is organising the Splash World Sailing Championships, with support from North Shore City Council, SPARC, The Lion Foundation, Victoria Cruising Club and Yachting New Zealand.
The best spot for viewing is the beachfront reserve around Takapuna Boating Club on Takapuna Beach, where boats will be readied and launched from the beach each morning, or on the waters between Takapuna Boating Club and Rangitoto Island, from the first start at 11am.
Prizes will be awarded to the winner of the Open Splash Championship, the best female winner, and the country with the lowest total points from amongst their three best sailors.
Results as at the end of Day 2:
Splash Worlds 2010 - Takapuna New Zealand
Results as of 15:52 on January 5, 2010
Sailed: 6, Discards: 1, To count: 5, Entries: 74, Scoring system: Appendix A