Saturday, 26 February 2011

Musto Wellington Match Race Cup: Corbett and Hazard on Top Form

Will Tiller's (RNZYS) FMJ Racing picked up, but Reuben Corbett (RNZYS) leads the men's event at the end of the second day, after four round robins, at the Musto Wellington Match Race Cup. Image copyright RPNYC.

by Matt Steven as updated by SailRaceWin

At the half way point of the 2011 Musto Wellington Match Racing Cup racing is extremely close. With New Zealand’s top up and coming talent sailing on Wellington harbour it was never going to be anything but tight!

In the women’s regatta pre event favourites and New Zealand Sailing Team members Stephanie Hazard and Sam Osborne dominated the leader board in the round robins. However, Hazard chose to race Osborne in the semi-finals, and defeated her 3-0, so Osborne has been relegated to the petit-final. In the other semi-final, Danielle Bowater (RNZYS) defeated the RPNYC's Anita Trudgen 3-1, to join Hazard in tomorrow's Finals.

In the men’s event, Wellington Spirit, Black Sheep Racing and Full Metal Jacket Racing were all tied on 6 wins each after 3 round robins. With Wellington Spirit skippered by Josh Junior (World match race ranking 45, Laser Olympic class ranking 15), Black Sheep Racing skippered by Reuben Corbett (World match race ranking 12) and Black Sheep Racing skippered by William Tiller (World match race ranking 35) the racing is very close with penalties flying and plenty of lead changes in each match.

However, a fourth round robin separated them out, and Corbett emerged with 9 wins, to Junior's 8 and Tiller's 7. The local RPNYC youth team (Coltman) didn't manage to break their duck. Corbett gets to chose his opponent in the semi-finals tomorrow.

This event incorporates both the men’s and women’s racing into one. The women are sailing in the Elliot Sixes which are the Olympic women’s match racing yachts whilst the men are competing in MRX’s.

For the men the teams are looking to prove themselves as New Zealand’s best up and coming match racers and are also preparing for their campaigns in Europe throughout the year. The winner of the event will receive the added bonus of a wild card entry to Match Race Germany in the 2011 World Match Racing Tour.

The Women are vying for selection into the NZL Sailing Team’s Olympic Squad. There are spots up for grabs and with the Olympics only two years away, the prospective Women sailors will need to be firing at this year’s event.

Results to Date

Women (after 3 Round Robins) wins-losses

Stephanie Hazard (Koru Match, RNZYS) 11-4
Sam Osborne (Silver Sails, RNZYS) 9-6
Danielle Bowater (RNZYS) 6-9
Anita Trudgen (RPNYC) 4-11
Hannah Maguire & Amanda Hargreaves have no wins
It appears that Hargreaves pulled out of the event at the start.

Women's Semi-Finals

Hazard (RNZYS) 3 - Osborne (RNZYS) 0 : Stephanie Hazard through to Finals
Bowater (RNZYS) 3 - Trudgen (RPNYC) 1 : Danielle Bowater through to Finals

Men (after 4 Round Robins) wins-losses

Reuben Corbett (Black Sheep Racing, RNZYS) 9-3
Josh Junior (Wellington Spirit, RPNYC) 8-4
Will Tiller (FMJ Racing, RNZYS) 7-5
Tim Coltman (RPNYC Youth) 0-12

Musto Wellington Match Race Cup