The last couple of days have seen the start of the 52nd 12 foot skiff inter-dominions regatta in Auckland. Blustery conditions touching 30 knots have given all crews a challenge from the outset and today was no different.
After Day one both Chris Reid in C-Tech (NZL) and Brett Hobson in Carde (AUS) were tied for the lead on 4 points a piece. With many tight races within a race occurring over the shortened courses
Day two dawned with gusts of 37 knots rolling through, and with the addition of the 18 foot skiffs and their Mark Foy regatta, the decision was taken to postpone racing ashore. A little later, after lunch, the race committee decided to can the 18's for the day but race the 12's so off they headed, mostly with the smaller fourth rig in.
The tricky southwesterly meant trouble for some, but not Tim Bartlet (NZL) who was well ahead for most of the race, until a tangle with some weed and a drop in breeze meant losing 4 places in a matter of moments. This allowed Chris Reid (NZL) to storm through for the lead.
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The second race of the day and again Tim showed superior height and speed to take a convincing win, however the action was further down the fleet with Russell Davis (NZL) and Brett Hobson (AUS) fighting it out for second and Chris Reid (NZL) and Nick Press (AUS) also enjoying a fight to the end.
Currently, after 4 races, New Zealand is on top of the board:
Chris Reid - C Tech (NZL) 9 points
Brett Hobson - Garde (AUS) 11 points
Tim Bartlet - Frankinskiff (NZL) 13 points
Despite the 18 foot skiffs being cancelled for the day, Ginge and his crew of Kitty and Olly on the new C-Tech boat took the chance to spend some more time on their new boat and went out for a spin in a solid breeze, however they 'only' clocked up 25 knots!
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Looking ahead to Tuesday and the rest of the week, it looks to be easing slightly which will allow the 18's to get out racing and there is sure to be some fantastically close and action packed racing to be seen each day from 1pm off the Orakei Wharf - most boats will be leaving the shore around 12 to 12:30 and can be watched from many of the vantage points around the Orakei area.
The regatta so far has been very well covered on social media sites like Facebook by the amazing ARG Marine Media and also Joshua McCormack, who due to illness has been unable to sail, but is taking to chance to create some awesome footage.
Check out the Facebook pages to see all the highlights and interviews from each day. http://www.facebook.com/argmm http://www.facebook.com/pages/Skiff-Auckland-12ft-and-18ft/226670420679146
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