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Kiwis outstanding Youth Worlds success..INEOS Team UK revealed

24/07/2018


Sail-World NZ e-magazine - July 24 - Kiwis Youth Worlds superb success

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Josh Armit - Mens Laser Radial - Day 4 - Youth Sailing World Championships - Corpus Christi, Texas, USA - photo © Jen Edney / World Sailing


Dear Recipient Name


Welcome to Sail-World.com's New Zealand e-magazine for July 24, 2018

The NZL Sailing Foundation backed Youth team turned in an impressive performance at the just concluded Youth Sailing World Championship in Corpus Christi, Texas.

For those who haven't caught up, the New Zealand team which competed in all nine events and finished second overall in the Nations Trophy. Individually the team won four medals - with Josh Armit joining an illustrious group of sailors who have won a Gold medal at the Youth Worlds in a singlehanded event.

Those singlehanded winners include Russell Coutts, Dean Barker, Ben Ainslie, Stu Bannatyne and Robert Scheidt. You can see the full medalist list by clicking here

52 Super Series: Race Day 4 Luna Rossa TP52, Cascais, Portugal - photo © Carlo Borlenghi
52 Super Series: Race Day 4 Luna Rossa TP52, Cascais, Portugal - photo © Carlo Borlenghi

Claimed to be the best ever performance in a Youth Worlds, with four medals won including Armit's Gold, it matched the previous best of four medals in 2015 at the controversial worlds at Langkawi, Malaysia - however there, Gold was not among them. New Zealand has won the Nations Trophy twice in 2002 and 1994. The Nations Trophy is widely regarded as a current litmus test of youth sailing talent and development program, and maybe a predictor of Olympic strength and performance two Olympic cycles down the track.

To many, the performance in the Nations Trophy is more important than the Medal count - were a few stars can easily overshadow the overall team performance. Second overall in the Nations Trophy is a big jump from 9th in 2017 and 8th in 2016 in Auckland.

INEOS Team UK launch the modified QUANT 28 in Portsmouth - photo © Paul Skirrow
INEOS Team UK launch the modified QUANT 28 in Portsmouth - photo © Paul Skirrow

By any measure, the New Zealand team have turned in an outstanding performance in what is a relatively short and difficult regatta.

Even better was the way the team was able to lift after a mediocre first day. It is very hard to win a regatta, particularly a Youth Worlds on the first day, but it is quite simple to lose it. New Zealand had an adequate opening day, but then started to lift, and also were consistent.

They were helped in this regard by the wind at Corpus Christi, which was moderate to fresh - without the light-air crapshoots that so often mar a regatta.

Greta Stewart, Tom Fyfe - NZL - Day 4 - Youth Sailing World Championships - Corpus Christi, Texas, USA  - photo © Jen Edney / World Sailing
Greta Stewart, Tom Fyfe - NZL - Day 4 - Youth Sailing World Championships - Corpus Christi, Texas, USA - photo © Jen Edney / World Sailing

Several of the New Zealand team were returning for their second or third Youth Worlds, and maybe that layer of experience gave some maturity and focus to the team.

The top performance came from Josh Armit, winning the Gold Medal in the Mens Laser Radial at the age of just 16 years. It was also his second Youth Worlds, having placed fifth the year before - also in the Laser Radial.

Our congratulations to the team, coaches and management an all involved.

Outwardly, New Zealand would appear to be in good shape for talent moving up the Olympic timeline.

But with seven of the ten class flagged to change for the 2024 Olympics at Paris/Marseille, the current Youth class progression which works nicely with the Olympic lineup, is set to be shredded.

Veerle ten Have (NZL) leads Womens RS:X - Day 1, 2018 World Sailing Youth Worlds, Corpus Christi, Texas, USA - photo © Jen Edney / World Sailing
Veerle ten Have (NZL) leads Womens RS:X - Day 1, 2018 World Sailing Youth Worlds, Corpus Christi, Texas, USA - photo © Jen Edney / World Sailing

Some will argue that despite the equipment changes which look likely, the events themselves will not change - there will be a change of class, and already we have seen three classes short-listed to go against the Laser and Laser Radial.

The stunning point of the Olympic class selection trainwreck is that at just 16 years old and 78kg, the current World Youth Champion is bordering on the upper end of the weight limit for the 2024 Olympic class options.

We know the upper weight limit for the Laser is around 80kg maybe 83kg. The minimum for Finn cuts in at 85kg, but few expect that class to survive a World Sailing Evaluation Trial process.

C-Tech's 5 axis Routech R200 CNC router is now operational in its purpose built room - photo © C-Tech
C-Tech's 5 axis Routech R200 CNC router is now operational in its purpose built room - photo © C-Tech

Armit will be too heavy for the Mixed Two-Hander - assuming the 470 survives the Evaluation Trial process. Any chosen class is likely to be geared around the 470 crew weight or lighter. At 78kg he is just 5kgs under the realistic upper crew weight for the 49er.

Having spent his sailing career to date sailing singlehanders, Armit is unlikely to switch to Kiteboarding, if indeed that sport does make the 2024 Olympics as a Sailing event. And who knows what shape the 2024 Olympic Windsurfer event will take? Will it be a regatta board or a wave jumping and tricks judged competition?

While the 2024 Olympic focus has been on achieving equal numbers of events/medal opportunities and participation, the damage to the Men's side of the regatta appears to be just regarded as collateral damage to which a shrug of the shoulders and look the other way seems the uncaring World Sailing response.

The Tag 60 catamaran, Stardust, owned by Ian Condor Smith, will be returning to the Whitsundays for Hamilton Island Race Week 2018. - photo © Andrea Francolini
The Tag 60 catamaran, Stardust, owned by Ian Condor Smith, will be returning to the Whitsundays for Hamilton Island Race Week 2018. - photo © Andrea Francolini

Josh Armit is the third generation of a sailing dynasty.

His grandfather Tony was one of the first two New Zealanders to sail around the world. At just 18 years old he commissioned Bert Woollacott to design a 28fter, which he built himself and then set off in 1954 on what would be a three-year voyage. You can read the full story by clicking here

Josh's father Leith is best known as a long time OK Dinghy sailor, winning four World titles and being awarded what is now known as the New Zealand Sailor of the Year in 1985. Leith was also an accomplished Finn sailor travelling as a reserve to John Cutler in the 1988 Olympics where Cutler won the Bronze medal.

Josh is following some big footsteps and has already achieved a feat that sits comfortably with his forebears, given the constraints of their respective eras.

NZL's  Josh Armit after being awarded the  Gold medal in the  Mens Laser Radial class at the 2018 Youth Sailing World Championships, Corpus Chris, Texas - photo © Jen Edney / World Sailing
NZL's Josh Armit after being awarded the Gold medal in the Mens Laser Radial class at the 2018 Youth Sailing World Championships, Corpus Chris, Texas - photo © Jen Edney / World Sailing

Normally Josh and the other Youth World medalists would be making plans for their Olympic futures if not in 2020 then certainly in 2024. But the way matters stand their Olympic chances rest on the outcome of a fraught administrative process.

The obvious move for thew bigger male Youth sailors is to leave the Olympics of 2024 to the lightweight men and female sailors, and instead set their sights on the America's Cup, or the upcoming 2021 Round the World race and look for a Youth berth as a start of their professional sailing career.

INEOS Team UK - AC75 test boat launched in Portsmouth UK, showing a relatively small wing profile - photo © Blur Sailing Team
INEOS Team UK - AC75 test boat launched in Portsmouth UK, showing a relatively small wing profile - photo © Blur Sailing Team
America's Cup fans - don't miss the additional images of INEOS Team UK's surrogate Americas Cup class yacht. The hull is a QUANT 28 to which has been attached a foiling mechanism which would be expected to be a close replica of the flowing system used on the almost three times larger AC75. There are five shots of the surrogate hanging out of the water - clearly showing the very interesting keel wings. There's some analysis on what is visible and we wonder the point of launching surrogate boats when there is just over eight months left until the launch date for the first AC75 on March 31, 2019.

Seb Lardies, Scott Mckenzie  Mens 29er - Day 4 - Youth Sailing World Championships - Corpus Christi, Texas, USA  - photo © James Tomlinson /World Sailing
Seb Lardies, Scott Mckenzie Mens 29er - Day 4 - Youth Sailing World Championships - Corpus Christi, Texas, USA - photo © James Tomlinson /World Sailing

Follow all the racing and developments in major and local events on Sail-World.com by scrolling to the top of the site, select New Zealand, and get all the latest news and updates from the sailing world.

All stories are available on Sail-World.com/nz

Good sailing!

Richard Gladwell
NZ Editor

 
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Harry Price with the red spinnaker (AUS) bested Leonard Takahashi in the blue spinnaker (NZL) at the 52nd annual Governor's Cup presented by Farmers & Merchants Bank and hosted by Balboa Yacht Club - photo © Tom Walker
Harry Price with the red spinnaker (AUS) bested Leonard Takahashi in the blue spinnaker (NZL) at the 52nd annual Governor's Cup presented by Farmers & Merchants Bank and hosted by Balboa Yacht Club - photo © Tom Walker

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Day 1 of the Rolex TP52 World Championship  - photo © Carlo Borlenghi / Luna Rossa
Day 1 of the Rolex TP52 World Championship - photo © Carlo Borlenghi / Luna Rossa

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