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Libby Porter wins 2014 Starling North Islands in Whangarei

by Hamish Hey, Yachting NZ on 20 Jan 2014
Winning sailors - 2014 Starling North Island Championships - January 2014 Yachting NZ

A large fleet of 73 boats contested the 2014 Starling North Island Champs hosted by the Whangarei Cruising Club on the waters of Parua Bay over the weekend.

Kohimara Yacht Club sailors Libby Porter and Tam Lindsay were in dominant form, consistency coming to the fore, with neither placing outside the top ten in any heat. It was however Libby, a light airs specialist, who prevailed in the light and often shifty conditions winning three heats, while turning in solid performances in the final two heats that were sailed in a 10-16knot north easterly.

Lindsay only placed outside the top five in two heats and started the final day just two points behind Porter, but failed to recover from poor starts in the last two heats and was unable to peg back Porter who deservedly won with score card a 1,1,1,2,3,6,7 and total of 14 points for the series, 6 points clear of Lindsay on 20 points. Murrays Bay’s Jeremy Mitchell suffered in the lighter conditions but came home strongly with dominant wins in the final two heats and with his score card of 1,1,2,6,11,14 placed third on 36 points a further 12 points clear of new comer to the class, Sandspit Yacht Club’s Jackson Keon.

YNZ Northern Region RSO, Hamish Hey attended the regatta as chief judge and with the help of Gary Corkin of Accessible Sailing fame, kept the competitors honest on rule 42 compliance and mark roundings. After a busy night in the protest room on Saturday night and a fleet briefing on Sunday morning, Hey and Race Officer Richard Brown were pleased with the greater compliance with the rules on day two and the greatly reduced number of general recalls.

A big thanks to the Whangarei Cruising Club for putting on an excellent event in a friendly atmosphere and brushing off the ‘event cob webs’ ahead of hosting the Nationals in WQebsite

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