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Oceanbridge NZL Sailing Regatta: Burling and Tuke start their new Olympic campaign in style

by Michael Brown 3 Feb 00:14 PST 3 February 2019
Peter Burling and Blair Tuke won six of the 11 races - 49er - Oceanbridge NZL Sailing Regatta - February 3, 2019 © Michael Brown, Yachting NZ

Peter Burling and Blair Tuke made a habit of winning in the last Olympic cycle and started their new campaign in style by taking out the Oceanbridge NZL Sailing Regatta today, Sunday .

They did it against arguably the strongest New Zealand 49er fleet ever, as well as a handful of international crews, and it will be a result of which many around the world will take notice.

Sailing on the same waters that will be used later this year for the 49er World Championships, the Olympic champions won six of the 11 races off the Royal Akarana Yacht Club to finish 14 points ahead of Isaac McHardie and William McKenzie, with Josh Porebski and Trent Rippey a further eight points behind in third.

“It’s been great,” Burling said. “It’s been a little like riding a bike; a lot of things come back really quickly. At the end of the day you need to put in a lot of time and that’s we’ve been doing over the last four or five months.

“It’s been really cool to do a regatta down here and it’s great to have such a high calibre fleet here in NZ. It’s been really cool to battle it out and come away with a win this time.”

Chances are they will notch a few more over the next 18 months and they will soon head to Europe to measure themselves against the rest of the 49er fleet, starting with April’s Princess Sofia regatta in Palma.

The majority of New Zealand’s top sailors will also compete in Palma, including Gemma Jones and Jason Saunders who took out the Nacra 17.

They started the day two points behind Liv Mackay and Micah Wilkinson and, although Mackay and Wilkinson had boat damage, Jones and Saunders revelled in the strong sea breeze to win all four races today.

“It was really good to be racing some good quality opposition,” Saunders said. “We are making a few mistakes. We haven’t raced in a while or done a lot of sailing in the last couple of weeks because Gemma hurt her leg. It’s been good to get back into it and we are feeling like we are getting on top of things, finally.”

Paul Snow-Hansen and Dan Willcox dominated the 470, winning seven of the eight races, but there were some encouraging signs from new women’s combination Susannah Pyatt and Brianna Reynolds-Smith who were second overall.

The event was also notable for the inclusion of kiteboarding, which was recently included on the programme for the 2024 Paris Olympics, with Sam Bullock dominating. Dave Ridley edged the Laser and Annabelle Rennie-Younger the women's Laser Radial.

Some of the closest racing was in the youth classes, especially with the Oceanbridge NZL Sailing Regatta being used as one of the selection events for the NZL Sailing Foundation Youth Team to compete at this year’s youth sailing world championships.

The boy’s 29er was decided over two regattas and Eli Liefting and Jack Frewin emerged by a solitary point over Brayden Hamilton and Pat Morgan.

“[Winning the trials] means so much because it’s what we have been training for for the last 18 months,” Liefting said.

It’s how much time Burling and Tuke have before the Tokyo Olympics and they can now look back on a successful start to their new campaign.

“It’s been really nice to put together a good performance this week and sail some better races,” Burling said. “It definitely felt like we were sailing a lot better by the end of the weekend.

“We have a list of things to work on before racing in Europe and we will just try to progress. It’s about trying to get all the little details in place right now and keep pushing hard.”

Results after the final day of the Oceanbridge NZL Sailing Regatta at the Royal Akarana Yacht Club today, Sunday February 3, 2019:

49er (16 boats)

1st: Peter Burling / Blair Tuke (NZL) 1 2 1 4 1 (5) 1 3 1 1 2 - 17 points 2nd: Isaac McHardie / William Mckenzie (NZL) 2 4 2 1 5 (6) 2 2 3 4 6 - 31 pts 3rd: Josh Porebski / Trent Rippey (NZL) 5 3 5 3 (10) 1 3 4 4 7 4 - 28 pts 49erFX (4 boats)

1st: Ben Paterson / Sean Paterson (NZL) (3) 3 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 - 12 pts 2nd: Crystal Sun / Olivia Hobbs (NZL) 4 1 3 3 2 3 2 3 (5 RET) 2 5 DNF - 28 pts 3rd: Emma French / Emma Stenhouse (NZL) 2 2 2 2 3 2 (5 UFD) 2 5 RET 5 DNC 5 DNC - 13 pts

29er (8 boats)

1st: Brayden Hamilton / Pat Morgan (NZL) 2 3 1 (4) 2 3 2 - 13 pts 2nd: Eli Liefting / Jack Frewin (NZL) 3 SCP 2 2 3 3 (4) 1 - 14 pts 3rd: James Barnett / Josh Schon (NZL) 4 (8) 3 1 1 2 5 - 16 pts

Nacra 17 (4 boats)

1st: Gemma Jones / Jason Saunders (NZL) 1 1 2 2 (5 UFD) 3 1 1 1 1 - 13 pts 2nd: Liv Mackay / Micah Wilkinson (NZL) 2 2 1 1 2 1 2 (5 DNF) 5 DNC 5 DNC - 21 pts 3rd: Erica Dawson / Henry Haslett (NZL) 3 3 3 3 1 2 3 2 2 (5 UFD) - 22 pts

Nacra 15 (4 boats)

1st: Helena Sanderson / Jack Honey (NZL) 1 1 1 1 1 2 3 1 (5 RET) 1 5 DNC - 17 pts 2nd: Francesco Kayrouz / Carrington Brady (NZL) 2 3 2 2 4 1 1 2 (5 RET) 3 1 - 21 pts 3rd: Hamish McLaren / Rebecca Morgan (NZL) 3 2 3 3 3 3 (4) 3 1 2 2 - 25 pts

420 (16 boats)

1st: Seb Menzies / Blake McGlashan (NZL) (2) 1 1 2 1 2 1 1 - 9 pts 2nd: Mason Mulcahy / Andre Van Dam (NZL) 4 3 3 1 2 1 (5) 2 - 16 pts 3rd: Donguk Kim / Yeongwoo Kim Busan (KOR) (17 DSQ) 4 2 4 5 4 3 5 - 27 pts

470 (7 boats)

1st: Paul Snow-Hansen / Dan Willcox (NZL) (5) 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 - 7 pts 2nd: Susannah Pyatt / Brianna Reynolds-Smith (NZL) 2 3 3 3 3 (5) 2 3 - 19 pts 3rd: Kidong Park / Shin Sang Min (KOR) (8 DNF) 2 2 4 4 3 3 2 - 20 pts

Laser (6 boats)

1st: Dave Ridley (NZL) (3) 2 1 1 1 2 2 1 - 12 pts 2nd: Jing Hwan Lee (KOR) 1 3 2 2 2 (6) 2 1 - 13 pts 3rd: Sangkyu Kim (KOR) (7 OCS) 1 3 4 1 1 5 4 - 19 pts

Laser Radial (22 boats)

1st: Caleb Armit (NZL) 4 (6) 1 3 2 3 1 4 - 18 pts 2nd: Luke Cashmore (NZL) 2 1 2 1 (19) 7 5 1 - 19 pts 3rd: Albert Stanley (NZL) 1 3 3 11 10 (23 UFD) 2 2 - 32 pts

Also 7th: Annabelle RennieYounger (NZL) 12 5 5 13 (18) 1 9 7 - 52 pts 8th: Olivia Christie (NZL) 15 11 6 6 3 (18) 11 3 - 55 pts 9th: Samantha Stock (NZL) 13 14 15 4 (21) 2 4 12 - 64 pts

Kites (4 kites)

1st: Sam Bullock (NZL) (1) 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 - 15 pts 2nd: Ben Turner (NZL) 2 2 3 2 2 2 (5 DNS) 5 DNC 5 DNC 5 DNC 3 2 3 4 3 2 - 45 pts 3rd: Justina Kitchen (NZL) 4 4 4 3 4 3 2 2 (5 DNS) 5 DNF 2 3 4 3 4 3 - 50 pts

Full results click here

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