Friday, 5 February 2010

Singapore Airlines Sail Auckland 2010: Day One - Close racing & close results with 3 races completed!

RS:X racing on Day One of Singapore Airlines Sail Auckland. Supplied image.

by Sara Roberts

RS:X 9.5
Dutch sailor Dorian Van Rijsselberghe leads the RS:X 9.5 fleet just clear of local rivals JP Tobin, Olympic Gold Medalist Tom Ashley and his training partner Antonio Cozzolino. Italian sailor Fabian Heidegger is just behind the kiwi trio in 5th place overall.

RS:X 8.5
Young French sailor Thomas Goyard had a flawless afternoon’s racing with 3 wins out of 3 races. He is followed closely by the top female sailors Moana Delle from Germany, Italian Laura Linares and Takapuna local Kate Ellingham.

Alexandra Maloney and her crew Sam Bullock, representing the Murrays Bay Sailing Club lead the 29er fleet with an impressive 3 firsts on day one in the eight boat fleet.

Second overall is Matthew Spray and Tyler Russell representing the Howick Yacht Club and behind them are the McKenzie brothers Andrew & Sam, just two points behind.

James Turner and his star crew Logan Dunning-Beck who won the Starling National Championships, are off to a great start winning two races out of the three today, and still lead overall despite gaining a Z-flag penalty in race two. If a Z-flag is flown from the Committee Boat before the start of a race, any boat over the starting line before the final 1 minute is penalised 20%.

Second overall in the 14 boat fleet is Alex Munro & Luke Stevenson, and third is the Malaysian Sailing Team duo helmed by Mohamad Hafizzudin Mazelan.

Olympic contender Peter Burling and his replacement crew Riley Dean lead the 49er fleet over their only opposition Marcus Hansen and Andrew Clarke. Dean jumped at the chance to sail with Burling after his regular crew Blair Tuke was unable to sail due to illness.

Mark Overington & Ben Goodwin lead the 470 fleet with two first and one second, over the Singaporean team helmed by Roy Jun Hao Tay. Yachting New Zealand Olympic Squad members Jo Aleh and Olivia Powrie had an OCS in race one today, however the girls bounced back to gain a third and first in the following two races. After seven races are completed each competitor can drop one race.

Laser Radial
Tom Saunders who won the Laser Radial Class National Championships a week ago held in Timaru, currently leads the Radial Fleet. At the discretion of the National Authority, Yachting New Zealand, the top male and female youth of the combined events, National Championships and Sail Auckland will qualify to compete at the ISAF Youth World Championships to be held in Istanbul, Turkey in July this year.

Molly Meech, the top contender for the female youth spot at the World Championships is currently the top ranked youth female in the Radial fleet.

The top female Sara Winther had a fantastic day on the water and is second overall with an impressive 1, 7, 2 scorecard in the 39 boat fleet.

No surprises in the Laser Class as current National Champion, and Olympic Squad member Andrew Murdoch leads the 21 boat fleet. Chasing hard on his heels are two under 21 year old sailors Andy Maloney and Sam Meech respectively.

All divisions, except for the RS:X boards left Kohimarama Beach on time this morning to a nice 10 – 12 knot breeze. Unfortunately the breeze didn’t last and the second races were completed around 2pm after the Race Committee’s had moved the courses. The RS:X boards had the best breeze of the day with an impressive sea-breeze of around 12 – 15 knots building in the afternoon. The final race for the day was completed around 7pm when a tired bunch of men, women & youth board sailors returned to the beach.

Racing begins at 11am tomorrow (Friday).

Singapore Airlines Sail Auckland Regatta

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