Geoff Smale...Camper splashed in Auckland...High speed wipeouts in AC45 - video

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 13 Apr 2011

Sail-World New Zealand: 13 April 2011

Geoff Smale pictured at last year's OKI 24 Hour Race  Richard Gladwell
Welcome to's New Zealand newsletter for 13 April 2011

Sad news on Monday afternoon with the finding of the wreckage of 1968 Sailor of the Year, Geoff Smale's microlight plane in the top end of the South Island and his body nearby.

In this edition of Sail-World we have updated our continuing story of his last flight and search along with a look back at his extremely active life and many achievements.

Along with long-time crew, Ralph Roberts, their win in the 1958 Prince of Wales Trophy in UK was a significant turning point for the sport, more so than Peter Mander and Jack Cropp's Gold medal two years earlier, because the PoW win had New Zealand sailors working together as a team in a class.

That ethic flowed into the then new Flying Dutchman class, and led to the development of the most competitive fleet in the world in New Zealand. The same team ethic flowed into the 470 class a decade or so later, resulting in three world championship wins for New Zealand sailors, and the launch of many professional sailing careers. Every time this team development ethic has developed in a class in NZ we have seen the result in Olympic medals and world championship wins.

AC45 heads down the mine - see the videos in this edition  Oracle Racing - copyright

Geoff was one of those people who really enjoyed life, and sailing in particular, and always had a smile on his face and ready laugh. That external visage hid an incredible intellect and self taught command of engineering principles which he applied to many situations.

In this edition of Sail-World, we try to capture the essence of this remarkable man who contributed so much to so many aspects of the sport.

Our condolences to his many friends and family.

Megan Reeves, partner of skipper Chris Nicholson, pours champagne over the bow of Emirates Team NZ's Volvo 70.  

Many thanks to those who have contributed to this edition, particularly those using our online submission and image loading facility which can be accessed by clicking here

We'll be taking what will hopefully be a short break from Sail-World for minor surgery.

Back on Friday, all things going as planned.

Good sailing!

Richard Gladwell
NZ Editor

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Stay up with the latest sailing news, as it happens, on our website

America's Cup: AC45 high speed wipeout video's and images
Oracle Racing and Sail-World,
Last week, Oracle Racing were out training on the Hauraki Gulf in strong-to-high winds between 25 and 35 knots with a sea running. They were sailing off the wind under North Head when a strong puff hit. The leeward bow dug in the water and the trampoline was nearly engulfed before control was regained, before the distribution of buoyancy in the hull allowed the bow to pop out and avert calamity.... [more]
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Geoff Smale: Sailor, Sailing Scientist and Sailing Engineer
Richard Gladwell,
Geoff Smale, who died in a light aircraft accident on Saturday was one of New Zealand's most intelligent sailors combining that rare mix of engineering ability, original thinking and great sailing ability. He did not start sailing until relatively late in life at the age of 21 years, and first rose to fame with a win in the prestigious Prince of Wales Trophy in 1958 sailed off Cowes Isle of Wig... [more]
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Emirates Team NZ Volvo 70 'splashed' in Auckland
Event Media,
Camper, the yacht Emirates Team New Zealand will campaign in the Volvo Race, was launched at the team's Viaduct Harbour, Auckland, base late this afternoon. Tomorrow, after the yacht's hydraulic systems, which operate the canting keel, are tested the mast will be stepped and the yacht prepared for its maiden sail later in the week.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race: Camper VOR70 makes journey to the sea + Video
Warren Douglas,
Emirates Team New Zealand's new round-the-world race yacht CAMPER has arrived in Auckland's Viaduct Harbour. She left the builder's yard in Auckland at 4.30am Sunday; just a year after project was announced.... [more]
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Oracle Racing News: Edition 5 - Team Korea enters; High speed wipeouts
Oracle Racing Media,
Edition 5 of the Oracle Racing newsletter with an introduction to Team Korea, and two videos of AC45 wipe-outs while training in the Hauraki Gulf., plus more...... [more]
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Doyle Sails congratulate winners of Farr 1020 Nationals
Doyle Sails Media,
Doyle Sails would like to congratulate the winners of this weekend's NZ Farr 1020 Nationals: Phil Yuill's 'Max Headroom' for line victory in the series and Michael Lanigan's 'Share Delight' for overall handicap victory. Congratulations also to 'Shockran' helmed by Joe Brownlee which finishing a close second in both categories after the five race series.... [more]
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Extreme 530 Sports fisher the gate prize at Hutchwilco 2011
Mike Rose PR,
A new Extreme 530 Sports fisher that is so new it will be first launched just days before the show is to form the heart of the gate prize for the 2011 Hutchwilco New Zealand Boat Show at the ASB Showgrounds, Greenlane, Auckland, 12-15 May.... [more]
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Olympic yachtsman found dead in plane + Video
Richard Gladwell,
One of New Zealand's top sailors - 1968 Olympic representative and 1958 Price of Wales Trophy winner, Geoff Smale, has been found dead in the cockpit of his crashed microlight. He was en route from Auckland to Ashburton. It is reported that an Airforce Iroquois helicopter found the wreckage, on Mount Duppa in the Bryant Range, about 20km north east of Nelson, around 2pm today, the Rescue Coordinat... [more]
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Telefonica returns to the Volvo Ocean Race
Volvon Ocean Race Media,
elefónica is back for the third consecutive edition to take part in the Volvo Ocean Race. The company will do so with a boat called 'Telefónica' which is undergoing construction at a shipyard in Valencia, Spain. The Spanish Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12 team will include a latest generation yacht and an expert and competitive crew, aspiring to win this prestigious challenge.... [more]
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World Match Racing Tour promises brands high returns
Audrey Lakai,
World Match Racing Tour - The latest media evaluation report from makes for an enticing read for brand managers – the Repucom external audit using their media evaluation model to determine a media equivalency based on similar advertising or CPT rates applied to the actual viewing audience showed the Tour delivered a media return of USD46m from its global TV, print and digital output last season.... [more]
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Barcelona World Race Gaes girls only 12 hours from world record
Jo Uffendell,
Having slowed overnight Caffari and Corbella onboard Gaes Centros Auditivos are now 12 hours away from claiming their respective round the world records in the Barcelona World Race.... [more]
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Extreme Sailing Series Act two takes Oman Sail teams to China
Nicky Moore,
The Extreme Sailing Series round two is being held in the venue that hosted the 2008 Olympic sailing event, Qingdao in China and starts on 13th April 2011... [more]
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Velux 5 Oceans skipper diagnosed with broken rib
Velux 5 Oceans,
Velux 5 Oceans skipper Zbigniew ‘Gutek' Gutkowski is on doctor's orders to rest after being diagnosed with a broken rib. The Polish ocean racer will remain in port for the time being and will take the time to carry out repairs.... [more]
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J.P. Morgan Asset Management Round the Island Race latest entries
Peta Stuart-Hunt,
J.P. Morgan Asset Management Round the Island Race update from Peta Stuart-Hunt. Peta shares some of the feel good factor this Race induces in those who compete in it.... [more]
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Flying Fifteen Championships hosted by drought-stricken lake in VIC
Lyn Wallace,
The ‘Art of Stainless' Victorian Flying Fifteen State Championships were recently held on Lake Cairn Curran after a dearth of events due to drought conditions in country Victoria. With the recent waters flowing after many lean years, it is great to see the passion and enthusiasm rise again for sailors at Victorian country sailing clubs.... [more]
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Extreme Sailing Series Act 2 racing to begin tomorrow in Qingdao
Extreme Sailing Series,
The Olympic spirit is very much alive for Act 2 of the Extreme Sailing Sereis which starts tomorrow in Qingdao, China.... [more]
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Barcelona World Race - Caffari and Corbella on the brink of history
Barcelona World Race,
Barcelona World Race - A slow night passing the latitudes of the Balearics, the transitional sticking point that has hampered nearly all of the five Barcelona World Race teams which have already finished, gave way to a fine last full day of racing today for Dee Caffari and Anna Corbella before they make history, expected now early morning on the finish line.... [more]
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ISAF Sailing World Cup Overall - British teams on top
ISAF Sailing World Cup series and after three regattas the world's best sailors are leading the way in the Overall Standings. Come the end of the ISAF Sailing World Cup series it will be interesting to see who comes out on top in the Finn Standings. Ben Ainslie (GBR) and Giles Scott (GBR) have been dominating the class with the pair sharing the spoils in all three of the regattas this season.... [more]
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TP52 World Championship 2011 in Porto Cervo
TP52 World Championship,
2011 Audi TP52 World Championships will be hosted by the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda on the famous waters of Sardinia's Porto Cervo.... [more]
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ISAF Youth Sailing World Championship Entry deadline approaching
Member National Authorities are reminded to submit their entry form (Form B) for the ISAF Youth Sailing World Championships 2011 taking place in Zadar, Croatia from 7-16 July 2011.... [more]
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WASSUP? Magic 25 Nationals – Bucks April 9th & 10th 2011 - That's what
Daniel Johnston,
What happens when you get the Magic 25's together? Some outstanding, one design sportboat racing - very close racing, no room for error, and plenty of stories at the club! The NZ Magic 25 Championships, held on 9-10 April by the Bucklands Beach Yacht Club in the Waitemata harbour was a great example of this! Eight windward leewards over two days for glory and the impressive trophy!... [more]
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ISAF recognizes South Africa Sailing training status
South African Sailing (SAS) has become the third International Sailing Federation Member National Authority to receive ISAF Recognized Training status for their National Training Programme (NTP).... [more]
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Barcelona World Race -Lone American sailor crosses the finish line
Barcelona World Race,
After 100 days, three hours, 13 minutes and 25 seconds at sea, Ryan Breymaier (Annapolis, Md./Washington, D.C.) – the lone American in the Barcelona World Race – stands on solid ground after finishing the race on Sunday, April 10... [more]
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Extreme Sailing Series Act 2 - Edmond de Rothschild in the crosshairs
Kate Jennings,
A month and a half after the Oman Grand Prix, the eleven Extreme Sailing Series crews are back together in China for the second act.... [more]
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470 Class Launches Development Programmes for 2011
Luissa Smith,
Supporting the current and future generations of 470 sailors is key to the development strategy of the International 470 Class Association. For 2011, the 470 Class Development Programmes build on the successes of past years and particularly 2010, when the Class supported over 300 sailors from more than 40 nations in their sailing careers.... [more]
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Barcelona World Race - Motivating factors for Caffari and Corbella
Barcelona World Race,
For Dee Caffari (GBR) and Anna Corbella (ESP) the remaining 220 miles to Barcelona are all that stand in their way before both chalk up another record in their respective careers and the second edition of the Barcelona World Race.... [more]
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ISAF Sailing World Cup Overall Standings after three regattas
After three regattas in the ISAF Sailing World Cup series the world's best sailors are leading the way in the Overall Standings.... [more]
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Velux 5 Oceans racer Hatfield ends Van Liew's winning streak
Velux 5 Oceans,
Canadian ocean racer Derek Hatfield has moved one step closer to shooting up the Velux 5 Oceans leader board after winning the ocean sprint four timed run.... [more]
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Antarctic grass thrives in a changing climate
British Antarctic Survey,
One plant species that grows in Antarctica appears to be thriving according to a team of UK scientists. Antarctic Hairgrass (Deschampsia antarctica) is more effective at absorbing organic nitrogen from the soil than the mosses that it lives alongside.... [more]
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Top NZ windsurfer takes on the Xterra NZ at Blue Lake
JP Tobin,
Top NZ windsurfer, JP Tobin sat out the recent Princess Sofia Trophy regatta in Palma, instead contesting the Xterra NZ event staged at the Blue Lake, Rotorua, before heading back into the windsurfing circuit in Europe and UK. He reports:... [more]
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San Francisco Windsurfing Racing season kicks off
David Wells,
San Francisco Bay Windsurfing 2011 season started out on a high note this past April 8 with near idyllic conditions for Formula Windsurfing Racing just off the race deck of the St Francis Yacht Club.... [more]
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Dan Slater - Leather medal at ISAF Palma World Cup - Finn class
Dan Slater,
NZL Sailing Team member, Dan Slater, reports from the ISAF Palma World Cup event in the Finn class: Today we sailed the medal race in 8-10 knots and although I could gain third place overall I needed to get five boats between the Frenchman and myself. I rounded the first mark in 5th one place behind the Frenchman who I needed to beat. Down the first run not much changed... [more]
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Kiteboards take heart from new Medal Events created by IOC
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) today confirmed the inclusion of six new events on the programme of the Olympic Winter Games in Sochi in 2014. They are ski half-pipe (men and women), women's ski jumping, biathlon mixed relay, figure skating team event and luge team relay.... [more]
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