Oceanbridge NZL Sailing Regatta - Overall
by Hana Hielkema on 6 Feb
4-6 February 2017
Oceanbridge NZL Sailing Regatta © Hana Hielkema
Close racing in light winds wrap up the event
The tussle for medals came down to the wire on the final day of the Oceanbridge NZL Sailing Regatta as the inaugural event wrapped up in Auckland today.
The last three days have seen some 140 Olympic and youth class sailors across 10 fleets competing side-by-side off Murrays Bay Sailing Club, and while some of the fleets were dominated from day one, the top bunch in others came down to the final race this afternoon.
After an initial postponement this morning due to no wind, the afternoon saw a fluctuating North to North Easterly breeze fill in which made for challenging conditions on the race course.
Using the light winds to their advantage however was Wakatere Boating Club's 420 dinghy class pair Ella Gladwell and Alice Haslett, who won their last race to take out the regatta after being locked on points at the top with fellow club members Robbie McCutcheon and Jonothan Weston yesterday.
Having only sailed together for a month and a half in the class which is recognized as a stepping stone to the Olympic 470, the girls say they were pleased to come away with a win.
"It feels good, we're happy with how we went today. For us doing well came down to looking for pressure and playing the shifts which we managed to do well in the last race," Haslett explains.
The pair are already looking forward to their next competition, the 420 National Championships in Wellington.
Another fleet which to have a tight bunch at the top was the Laser Radial class.
While Murrays Bay sailor Josh Armit had a consistent string of results to take the overall lead, the real battle came in the points jostle for 2nd and 3rd between Scott Leith and Susannah Pyatt.
Also from Murrays Bay Sailing Club, Leith and Pyatt were separated by just one point in the final standings with the final race putting Leith into the silver medal slot.
"I was really happy to get the second, especially as it was mainly a light regatta. It was a bit sad to miss out on the win having won the regatta two times in a row, but Josh Armit was certainly worthy of it, and the race committee did incredibly well to get races away in trying conditions," Leith, who is also the yacht club commodore, explains.
From an event point of view, Leith says it's been exciting to host the regatta at the newly finished reserve, which is part of the club's revamped facilities.
"We easily fitted the 103 boats in and it's been a fantastic venue. Hopefully it will get bigger and better in the future," he comments.
Across some of the other fleets, frontrunners had their their positions finalised before racing had even begun today.
Rio Olympic pairs Alexandra Maloney and Molly Meech along with Paul Snow-Hansen and Daniel Willcox were amidst the 49erFX and 470 fleets, using the regatta as a platform to ease back onto the race course after a well deserved break since Rio.
Both pairs won their fleets in convincing style as they shared the race course with up-and-coming Olympians and fellow New Zealand sailors.
Also taking a convincing lead was Thomas Saunders from Tauranga Yacht and Power Boat Club, in the Laser Full Rig class, who started the day with a relaxed approach having built a "nice margin" on the lead in his fleet.
The day concluded with prizegiving held off Murrays Bay Yacht Club's reserve overlooking the Hauraki Gulf, with Yachting New Zealand Chief Executive David Abercrombie present to award the medals.
The Oceanbridge NZL Sailing Regatta is made possible only thanks to the contributions from principle sponsor Oceanbridge, and Yachting New Zealand sponsors Aon, HRG, Nespresso, Volvo and Zhik.
Overall Results: (top three, full results can be found here)
1st Ella Gladwell & Alice Haslett (14 points)
2nd Robbie McCutcheon & Jonothan Weston (17 points)
3rd Xanthie Copeland & Annabel Cave (18 points)
1st Ella Gladwell & Alice Haslett (14 points)
2nd Xanthe Copeland & Annabel Cave (18 points)
3rd Cara Higinbottom & Jessica Lee (51 points)
1st Daniel Wilcox & Paul Snow-Hanson (7 points)
2nd Sam Barnett & Zak Merton (14 points)
3rd Park Jaewan & Choiminje (20 points)
1st Courtney Reynolds-Smith & Brianna Reynolds-Smith (27 points)
1st Thomas Saunders (11 points)
2nd Jianan Wu (24 points)
3rd Andrew McKenzie (33 points)
Laser Radial Open
1st Josh Armit (15 points)
2nd Scott Leith (25 points)
3rd Susannah Pyatt (26 points)
Laser Radial Women
1st Susannah Pyatt (26 points)
2nd Olivia Christie (63 points)
3rd Michelle Bain (109 points)
1st Francesco Kayrouz & Jackson Keon (17 points)
2nd Seb Lardies & Scott Mckenzie (19 points)
3rd Ben Paterson & Sean Paterson (27 points)
1st Isaac Mchardie & William Mckenzie (14 points)
2nd Markus Sommerville & Jack Simpson (16 points)
3rd Josh Porebski & Trent Rippey (17 points)
1st Alex Maloney & Molly Meech (7 points)
2nd Anna Yamazaki & Sena Takano (14 points)
3rd Livia Naef & Nelia Puhaze (23 points)
1st Max Meffan (6 points)
2nd Veerle ten Have (12 points)
3rd Dillon Browne (16 points)
RSX 8.5 Women
1st Veerle ten Have (12 points)
2nd Audrey Perratt (26 points)
1st Karl Purdie (16 points)
2nd Ian Baker (17 points)
3rd Raymond Hall (20 points)
1st Olivia Mackay & Micah Wilkinson (7 points)
2nd Aaron Duncan & Julia Francis (16 points)