Once again a difficult forecast kept both sailors and race officials on their toes.
With the wild winds from Thursday and Friday no longer around the Race Committee was able to complete round robin 1 before midday. However with a windy forecast looming on Sunday the call was made by RO Ken Burt to skip round robin 2 and proceed straight to semi finals.
The standings after round robin 1 saw RPNYC’s Sam Mackay sitting atop the leaderboard, followed closely by RNZYS’s Lucas Chattonier in 2nd place, RNZYS’s George Anyon in 3rd and RPNYC’s William Eastman rounding out the top 4 after just sneaking in by a whisker by winning his final match against RPNYC’s Nick Thyne.
Mackay, as top qualifier, picked to sail against Anyon in his semi final which left Chatonnier to do battle against Eastman in the other semi final match up. As racing was due to kick off a strong southerly front hit Wellington bringing wild windshifts, rain and even some hail.
Both semi finals were hotly contested and went to 1-1 in a first to 2 points format. With both semis coming down to the final race Mackay managed to edge out Anyon in a race filled with gruelling tacking duels and inevitably secure his teams spot in the final. The final race of the second semi final saw an even more intense contest between Chatonnier and Eastman with multiple lead changes. Eastman held on down the last run to the finish to take the series 2-1 and move on to face Mackay in an all RPNYC final.
In the sail off for 5th vs 6th RPNYC’s Thyne sailed well to win 2-0 over Kirkman, the highest placed all girls team at the event. In the 7th vs 8th sail off Corke came from behind in the second match to win 2-0 and secure 7th place over Tait. It has been fantastic to have 3 girls teams competing at this years event and bodes well for women’s match racing in New Zealand.
The intention is to sail the finals and the petit finals tomorrow morning. Stay tuned to our live twitter updates.