Monday, 7 December 2009

New Zealanders sit pretty at Sail Sydney Regatta

Jo Aleh and Olivia Powrie at Sail Sydney 2009. Image copyright

by Zoe Hawkins

After two days of racing and halfway through the Sail Sydney regatta, the New Zealand contingent racing in Sydney are showing excellent potential for strong podium finishes.

Jo Aleh and Olivia Powrie (pictured) won their first race against Australian Olympic Gold Medallist duo Malcolm Page and Mathew Belcher and now sit in third place in the Open 470 Class, and are second in the Women’s Class. Francisco Lardies and Finn Drummond are running fifth in the Open event, and third in the Men’s. This is their first Grade One event in the 470.

After a win and two second places, new combination Peter Burling and Blair Tuke are placing second in the challenging 49er skiff division.

Four Kiwis are in the top ten in the hotly contested Laser class: Sam Meech is fourth, Andy Maloney sixth, Josh Junior seventh, and Andrew Murdoch ninth. James Sandall is 15th in the same class, and Rawiri Geddes 31st, in a fleet of 41 entrants.

Sunday's racing was held in light and shifty conditions on a busy harbour, but today provided a steady 15 knot sea breeze.

230 entrants are participating in Sail Sydney, including a large international contingent there to amass points towards their Olympic campaigns for London 2012. International entries have come from: Great Britain, Ireland, the USA, Chile, Spain, Singapore, Greece, Canada, Japan, Finland, Hungary, Switzerland, Norway, India, Korea, Norway, Croatia, Poland and Italy. Racing finishes on Tuesday.

The Sail Sydney Regatta, the only ISAF Grade 1 event in NSW, is the second event of the Sail Down Under series. The third and final event is Sail Melbourne, the first round of the ISAF Sailing World Cup.

Yachting New Zealand
Sail Sydney

No comments: