|Saturday 11 March
FRUSTRATING WINDLESS FIRST DAY OF YNZ OLYMPIC TRIALS
Mistrals and Tornados didn't even get their feet wet
Eastern Beach, Auckland: A gentle four knot breeze constantly hampered the
Race Committee's attempts to start the first day of the much-anticipated
Yachting New Zealand Olympic Selection Trials for Sydney 2000.
The Finns, Europes and 470s were only able to sail one race today, with the
Mistral and Tornado sailors not even getting their feet wet.
A 6-knot minimum for the Mistral and Tornado classes meant that all the Race
Committee could do was stare at their wind gauges and wait for the breeze. A
watched pot never boils, and so it proved today with the wind never reaching
more than 5 knots all day. Racing was eventually called off at 4pm with the
Mistrals and Tornados sailors not leaving the beach all the day.
As frustrating as it was not to be racing, there was an air of general
relief amongst the Mistral sailors. With pumping now standard in light wind
races, it would have been a tiring day on the boardsailing course.
And with nothing else to do except wait, any sign of the intense competition
between Bruce Kendall, Aaron McIntosh and Jon Paul Tobin were put aside to
help YNZ boardsailing coach Grant Beck clean the bottom of his coach boat.
It's a case of déjà vu for Kendall & McIntosh, this regatta being a replay
of the Olympic selection battle in 1996 for Atlanta, won eventually by
McIntosh. This time around, Jon Paul Tobin joins the fray and poses a
genuine threat. All eyes will be on the Mistral course tomorrow to see which
of the three will grab the early lead.
Meanwhile there was slightly better news on the on the monotype course.
After a two hour wait for wind, a gentle 6 - 7 knots of breeze allowed the
Race Committee to start what were the only races of the day.
Abby Mason secured a confidence-boosting win in the Europes, followed home
by Sarah Macky and Sharon Ferris.
Macky, winner of the recent national champs and Royal SunAlliance regatta,
has put up a strong challenge to Mason's accustomed top spot amongst the
Kiwi Europe sailors. Final results on this course will be intensely
contested and are likely to go down to the wire.
Ian Baker from Timaru clinched the important first win of the Finn trial,
followed home by Team New Zealander and ex-Laser sailor Hamish Pepper.
Pepper, 10th at Atlanta in the Laser, is in the Finn to brush up on his
small boat skills, having become accustomed to a slightly larger rig for the
last 18 months! Wellington's Stuart Bannatyne was 3rd.
All of the 64 competitors in the fleet are intent on impressing the YNZ
Olympic Selectors who will be using this regatta as the basis for their
decision. A change to the YNZ Olympic Selection Policy means that winning
this regatta does not automatically imply selection.
Only one crew from each of the seven disciplines racing this week can get
their ticket to Sydney 2000. The sailors have spent a lifetime preparing for
this regatta, and for many this will be the end of the road.
The venue at Auckland's Eastern Beach has been specifically chosen for its
similarity to the conditions expected in Sydney in September. True to form,
today's light and shifty conditions left the sailors in no doubt that they
will have their work cut out for them this week.
With more light weather forecast for tomorrow, it will be another day of
waiting and watching for organisers and competitors alike. Racing is
scheduled in all classes.
Top 3 results in each class follow.
PROVISIONAL RESULTS: YNZ Olympic Selection Trials, Day 1
(No racing in Mistral men, Mistral women, Tornado classes)
EUROPE (after 1 race of 11)
1. NZL122 - Abby MASON; 1 (1pt)
2. NZL115 - Sarah MACKY; 2 (2pts)
3. NZL124 - Sharon FERRIS; 3 (3pts)
FINN (after 1 race of 11)
1. NZL242 - Ian BAKER; 1 (1pts)
2. NZL8 - Hamish PEPPER; 2 (2pts)
3. NZL19 - Stuart BANNATYNE; 3 (3pts)
470 Men & Women (sailed & scored as a single fleet)
1. NZL190 - Melinda HENSHAW & Jenny EGNOT; 1 (1pts)
2. NZL185 - Derek SCOTT / Matthew MINOPRIO; 2 (2pts)
3. NZL182 - Steven KEEN / Philip KEEN; 3 (3pts)
Sunday 12 March
A lack of wind delayed racing on the second day of
the Trials. However all
classes completed two of today's three scheduled races, except the Finns
which sailed only one.
Racing will now be held on Monday 13 March which had been set aside as a
Monday 13 March
McINTOSH, TOBIN MATCH-RACING FOR MISTRAL OLYMPIC SPOT
The battle of the big guns continues in 2000 Olympic Selection Trials
Eastern Beach, Auckland: Only two points separate Mistral men's big guns
Aaron McIntosh and Jon-Paul Tobin after Day 3 of the YNZ Olympic Selection
With three wins and a second so far, McIntosh is two points ahead of the Bay
of Plenty sailor just before the halfway mark in this do-or-die contest.
However with Tobin's scorecard now reading 2, 2, 2, 1, the competition is
rapidly turning into a match race.
After a frustratingly windless weekend, the weather gods took pleasure in
showing who's boss today. It was a blustery, overcast day with winds gusting
up to 25 - 30 knots at the midday start of the in the first race on the
Tobin led the way for the first half of the first race sailed in mammoth,
arm-wrenching seas. McIntosh caught up on the downwind leg and from there it
became a drag race. McIntosh eventually won by 4 seconds.
Shayne Bright took an early lead in today's second race, but Tobin wasted no
time in playing catch-up. Tobin eventually claimed the lead half way down
the second downwind leg, and never looked back. McIntosh caught up from
third to second behind Tobin but could not get close enough to overtake.
Tobin crossed the line 10 seconds ahead of McIntosh.
Grant Beck has credited both Tobin and McIntosh with being the two fastest
downwind sailors, and both clearly relished these conditions. But speed has
its price - and big downwind gains are often matched by similar losses.
Says McIntosh, "at these speeds, small mistakes can become very costly. I
had an opportunity to catch JP in the second race, but then I underlaid the
top mark. JP was able to take advantage of the extra two tacks, and just
Tobin's valuable win has kept the points close, and ensured that the outcome
of this contest is still wide open. That said, the superiority of both these
sailors is evident in that Tobin & McIntosh finished the second race an
entire leg ahead of the rest of the fleet.
Double Olympic medallist Bruce Kendall maintains his 3rd place overall in
the fleet, although (nned points) behind and not really part of the
McIntosh - Tobin duel for top spot.
Barbara Kendall was struggling to keep up with the men in today's heavy
conditions, but is easily maintaining her lead amongst the women in the
Sarah Macky showed her style in the fresher breezes, taking line honours in
today's single race for the Europe class. Macky caught the all-important
first shift, and in combination with mistakes made by others on the course,
the win was simply a case of defending the lead.
Ex-Atlanta NZL Olympic rep Sharon Ferris followed Macky over the line and
Abby Mason had to be happy with third.
Mason's speed in the lighter conditions was evident during the weekend's
faltering breezes and recent hard work in light air training is clearly
paying dividends. However today's 15 - 20 knot breeze allowed Macky to close
the points gap and take the overnight lead (6pts), albeit slender, 2 points
ahead of Mason (8pts).
Macky, a former youth world champion and Laser Radial youth world champion,
has steadily eroded Mason's dominance in the local Europe fleet. Most
recently Macky took out the Sail Auckland and Europe national championship
regattas, in both cases ahead of Mason.
Leading the fleet in your first ever Olympic Trial is a daunting position to
be in, but Macky remains unfazed, instead opting for the 'slowly but surely'
approach. "I'm just taking each day as it comes" say says, "it seems like a
long way to the end of this regatta, and I'm just taking one race at a
Wellington's Stuart Bannatyne is giving the Finn fleet a run for its money,
winning two races of the 4 sailed so far in the regatta. A 2nd today puts
the ex-Volvo sailor and ex-youth single-handed world champion on 7 points
overall, 4 points ahead of Timaru's Ian Baker. Baker won today's race. Team
New Zealander Hamish Pepper has slipped to 3rd with a 5th today.
Chris Dickson sailing in the Tornado catamaran with his new crew Glen Sowry
had to be satisfied with a 2nd today, after being beaten around the track by
renowned heavy-weather sailors Simon Manning and Andy Robertson from
Wellington. Manning and Dickson are now neck and neck on points, although
with another 8 races to go, it's early days.
Relative class newcomers Nick Taylor & Reece Brailey are sitting at the top
of the table in the men's 470 (10pts), three points ahead of class veterans
Simon Cooke & Peter Nicholas. Wellington duo Rhys Johnston and Jamie Hunt
won today's race, although the result does not do enough to their overall
pointscore (18pts) to put them in the top 3.
Canterbury women's 470 duo Melinda Henshaw & Jenny Egnot crossed the
start-line early in yesterday's second race, giving them an expensive OCS
(10pts) and relegating them to the bottom half of the table (20pts) until
the first discard after tomorrow's 2 races. Even carrying the discard score,
Henshaw & Egnot are comfortably ahead of the other women's crews in the
Top 3 results in each class follow.
PROVISIONAL RESULTS - Day 3, Monday 13 March
MISTRAL SAILBOARD (men & women sailed & scored as a single fleet)
1. Aaron McINTOSH: 1, 1, 1, 2 (5pts)
2. Jon-Paul TOBIN: 2, 2, 2, 1 (7pts)
3. Bruce KENDALL: 3, 5, 4, 4 (16pts)
470 (men & women sailed as a single fleet)
1. Nicholas TAYLOR / Reece BRAILEY: 4, 3, 1, 2 (10pts)
2. Simon COOKE / Peter NICHOLAS: 5, 1, 4, 3 (13pts)
3. Derek SCOTT / Matthew MINOPRIO: 2, 5, 3, 6 (16pts)
1. Sarah MACKY; 2, 2, 1, 1 (6pts)
2. Abby MASON; 1, 1, 3, 3 (8pts)
3. Sharon FERRIS; 3, 4, 2, 2 (11pts)
1. Stuart BANNATYNE; 3, 1, 1, 2 (7pts)
2. Ian BAKER; 1, 5, 4, 1 (11pts)
3. Hamish PEPPER; 2, 2, 3, 5 (12pts)
1. Chris DICKSON / Glen SOWRY; 1, 3, 2 (6pts)
2. Simon MANNING / Andy ROBERTSON; 3, 2, 1 (6pts)
3. Nigel WILLIAMS / Jeremy STEPHENSON; 2, 4, 4 (10pts)
Wednesday 15 March
"Most exciting sailboard racing ever"
Extreme conditions put Olympic hopefuls through their paces
The ides of March turned on extreme conditions for competitors in the 5th
day of the YNZ Olympic
Selection Trials being sailed off Eastern Beach.
After sailors floated around on glassy seas yesterday, a 25 knot
south-westerly whipped up a steep chop, making for tough sailing conditions.
Most classes were sailing at the top end of their allowed wind limits. Three
races were scheduled for today to make up for lost time earlier in the week,
but the conditions only allowed two to be sailed in all classes.
Almost at the halfway mark of the regatta, the competition is heating up
rapidly, with only 2 or 3 points separating first and second in most
"The most exciting boardsailing race I have ever seen in my life" is how
YNZ boardsailing coach Grant Beck described today's second race on the
Mistral course where the battle between Aaron McIntosh and Jon Paul Tobin
Only two points separates the two, with both sailors absolutely determined
to win this all-or-nothing contest which has more or less turned into a
"Sailing in 25 knots of wind, they were going downwind at a speed of 25
knots and half the time they were airborne" says Beck, "they were never more
than a length apart for the whole race."
" It was like they were tied together with a piece of string" says Beck,
they were match racing gybe for gybe around the entire course."
Tobin was leading almost the whole way, but missed a tack approaching the
top mark on the last upwind leg, thus had to put in two more to make up.
This opened up a minute window of opportunity for the three-time world
champ, and McIntosh snatched the lead, holding on all the way to the finish.
Tobin, understandably disappointed by the result, remained philosophical
after the race. "When it's that close, it all comes down to who makes the
first mistake and unfortunately that was me" he says, "I missed a tack on
the last upwind leg, and Aaron was able to overtake. That was that really."
A win for Tobin in the first race maintains the pressure cooker-like tension
in the Mistral fleet with McIntosh on 8 points and Tobin on 10. Two more
races are scheduled for tomorrow.
Chris Dickson is hanging on to top spot in the Tornado catamarans. A 1st and
a 3rd today puts & new crewmember Glen Sowry him a valuable 4 points ahead
of Wellington's Simon Manning & Andy Robertson.
Dickson & Sowry ran into problems with their gib half way through the first
race, but still managed to win the race comfortably. Not quite so
comfortable was the planned capsize to administer first aid in between races
which saw Sowry swimming to reach the top of the mast to repair the damage.
A premature start in the second race, combined with an unscheduled capsize
during the first mark-rounding had Dickson & Sowry running to catch up with
the rest of the fleet. They were given a little breathing space by Manning &
Robertson who suffered a similar fate later in the race. Dickson eventually
finished 3rd and 1st overall (10pts) and the Wellingtonians 5th and 2nd
A big swell and fresh conditions made for boat breaking weather on the 470
course. After winning today's first race class veterans Simon Cooke & Peter
Nicholas, along with three other crews, suffered a broken mast and was
unable to finish the 2nd race forcing them to carry an expensive 10pts and
3rd overall (24pts). Relative newcomers Nick Taylor & Reece Brailey maintain
the lead over the fleet with 15pts.
Canterbury women's 470 sailors Melinda Henshaw & Jenny Egnot are comfortably
ahead of the other women in the fleet, but also suffered from broken
equipment in today's second race.
Stuart Bannatyne from Wellington continues his steady progress through the
Finn class, notching up another win (his 3rd of the regatta) and a 2nd today
maintaining his overnight lead (10pts) ahead of Ian Baker (15pts).
Says Bannatyne "I was first round the top mark in the first race, and from
then on it was a case of minimising my mistakes and staying in phase with
the shifts to defend my lead."
In the second race, the Wellingtonian's lead was snatched by Timaru's Ian
Baker who got his tactics exactly right and overtook Bannatyne at the start
of the last upwind leg. Says Bannatyne, "he got on the right of me coming
out of the gate for the second time and after that there were no passing
Sarah Macky, Abby Mason and Sharon Ferris continued their three way struggle
for dominance in the Europe fleet. In today's two races, Mason grabbed the
first win and Macky the second. Macky finished 2nd behind Mason in the first
race, allowing her to maintain her overall lead, albeit by 3 points (9pts).
Mason is 2nd on 12pts, Ferris 3rd on 16pts. A drifting mark caused problems
for the race committee, with a number of protests filed.
Competitors in all classes are able to discard their worst score at the
start of tomorrow's 7th race. This will see a mix-up in the placings, and
for many at the top of the tables, a closing of the points gap.
PROVISIONAL RESULTS - Day 5, Wednesday 15 March
MISTRAL SAILBOARD - after 6 of 11 races
(men & women sailed & scored as a single fleet)
1. Aaron McINTOSH: 1, 1, 1, 2, 2, 1 (8pts)
2. Jon-Paul TOBIN: 2, 2, 2, 1, 1, 2 (10pts)
3. Bruce KENDALL: 3, 5, 4, 4, OCS, 4 (33pts)
470 - after 6 of 11 races (men & women sailed as a single fleet)
1. Nicholas TAYLOR / Reece BRAILEY: 4, 3, 1, 2, 4, 1 (15pts)
2. Derek SCOTT / Matthew MINOPRIO: 2, 5, 3, 6, 3, 4 (23pts)
3. Simon COOKE / Peter NICHOLAS: 5, 1, 4, 3, 1, dnf (24pts)
EUROPE - after 6 races of 11
1. Sarah MACKY; 2, 2, 1, 1, 2, 1 (9pts)
2. Abby MASON; 1, 1, 3, 3, 1, 3 (12pts)
3. Sharon FERRIS; 3, 4, 2, 2, 3, 2 (16pts)
FINN - after 6 of 11 races
1. Stuart BANNATYNE; 3, 1, 1, 2, 1, 2 (10pts)
2. Ian BAKER; 1, 5, 4, 1, 3, 1 (15pts)
3. Clifton WEBB; 6, 3, 2, 3, 2, 3 (19pts)
TORNADO - after 5 of 11 races
1. Chris DICKSON / Glen SOWRY; 1, 3, 2, 1, 3 (10pts)
2. Simon MANNING / Andy ROBERTSON; 3, 2, 1, 3, 5 (14pts)
3. Nigel WILLIAMS / Jeremy STEPHENSON; 2, 4, 4, 4, 1 (15pts)
Thursday 16 March
McINTOSH "STEPS OUT" IN BATTLE OF THE BOARDS
The long wait for weather pays off in yachting's Olympic Trials
Eastern Beach, Auckland: A watched pot never boils and at 3.30pm, after
waiting over 3 hours for the breeze to pick up to something sailable, it
seemed that Day 6 of the YNZ Olympic Selection Trials would be a non-event.
Glassy seas, beautiful sunny day, and not a cloud in the sky.
But, good things come to those who wait and in true America's Cup style, a
15 knot southwesterly breeze suddenly arrived, creating perfect sailing
All 7 classes sailed at least one race, with all classes except the Tornados
able to discard their worst score. In many cases this has mixed up the
fleets, as well as closing the points gap between those at the top of the
Now in the last quarter of the regatta, those leading the fleets will be in
defence mode, determined to hang on to their leads at all costs.
The boardsailors were the first to get away this afternoon with Aaron
McIntosh and Jon Paul Tobin keen to pick up where they left off from
yesterday's high speed battle for supremacy in the Mistral men's
After a conservative start in the first race, Tobin led McIntosh around the
first downwind mark. By the second lap, the lead swapped and McIntosh lead
the rest of the way home.
Clearly enjoying himself on the course in picture perfect boardsailing
conditions, McIntosh led the second race from start to finish, eventually
winning by almost an entire leg. This is a significant result for McIntosh
who has now earned himself a valuable breathing space for the final 3 races
of the regatta. There are now 4 points between himself and Tobin.
"I've managed to step out today" says McIntosh, "this is what I wanted to
"I had a great day today" he says, "the breeze was really shifty and it was
a case of setting yourself up well at the top mark for the run down the
hill. I had couple of nice gusts on the downwind legs, and after that it was
just a case of keeping in phase with the shifts."
With most of the really hard work over, McIntosh will not be taking any
risks to protect his hard-won lead. "It's not over until it's over and I
have to sail some nice solid races to finish" he says, "I'll be sailing
sensibly to make sure I don't make any mistakes."
Chris Dickson is showing his class in Tornado fleet, winning both of today's
races, sailed in ideal conditions for the speedy Olympic catamarans. Dickson
and Glen Sowry (9pts) have opened up a handy lead from Wellington's Simon
Manning and Andy Robertson (13pts). This is Dickson's third attempt at
Olympic selection, and with just four races to go, maybe Sydney 2000 will be
Sarah Macky is edging her way closer to an Olympic dream in the Europe
class, maintaining her lead over top seed Abby Mason. In the only race
sailed today, Macky clocked her 4th win of the 7 races so far and still at
the top of the fleet (8pts), 3 points clear of Mason.
Macky and Mason were 1st and 2nd respectively to the top mark, following
each other down the hill. However a tangle with the Finn fleet sailing on
the same course gave Mason an opporutnity to close the gap, putting the two
girls neck and neck. However Macky pulled away on the final beat and was
able to collect the win. Christchurch's Shelley Hesson came in 3rd ahead of
Kerikeri's Sharon Ferris, putting Ferris now a distant 3rd overall and
effectively out of the contest.
It's proving to be a battle to the last in the 470 class, with the discarded
scores prompting a rearrangement of the fleet. Class veterans Simon Cooke &
Peter Nicholas won both of today's two races, bumping overnight leaders
Nicholas Taylor & Reece Brailey from their top spots. While neck and neck on
16 points, Cooke & Nicholas lead the contest on countback.
Canterbury's women's 470 duo Melinda Henshaw & Jenny Egnot have been lead
girls around the course for most of this regatta and today's two races were
no exception. They are now a comfortable 21 points ahead of the other
women's crews in the fleet but are carrying expensive scores for a premature
start and failing to finish a race.
North Shore's Clifton Webb got his first win of the regatta in today's only
race in the Finns, chased home by Wellington's Stuart Bannatyne (2nd) and
Timaru's Ian Baker (3rd). Webb, 3rd overall on 14points is now breathing
down Baker's neck (13pts), with only one point between them.
Bannatyne has now put 4 points between himself and 2nd placed Baker,
extending his lead from this morning. A former winner of the youth world
championship title, this is Bannatyne's first Olympic campaign.
YNZ OLYMPIC SELECTION TRIALS, Day 6 (Thursday 16 March)
MISTRAL SAILBOARD after 8 of 11 races (1 discard)
(men & women sailed & scored as a single fleet)
1. Aaron McINTOSH: 1, 1, 1, 2, 2, 1, 1, 1 (8pts)
2. Jon-Paul TOBIN: 2, 2, 2, 1, 1, 2, 2, 2 (12pts)
3. Bruce KENDALL: 3, 5, 4, 4, ocs, 4, 3, 3 (26pts)
9. Barbara KENDALL; 6, 4, 10, 10, ocs, 10, 6, 9 (55pts)
470 after 8 of 11 races (1 discard)
(men & women sailed as a single fleet)
1. Simon COOKE / Peter NICHOLAS: 5, 1, 4, 3, 1, dnf, 1, 1 (16pts)
2. Nicholas TAYLOR / Reece BRAILEY: 4, 3, 1, 2, 4, 1, 2, 3 (16pts)
3. Andrew BROWN / Chris BLUNDEN: 7, 2, 6, 4, 2, 3, 4, 7 (28pts)
6. Melinda HENSHAW / Jenny EGNOT; 1, 4, ocs, 5, 5, dns, 6, 2 (33pts)
EUROPE, after 7 of 11 races (1 discard)
1. Sarah MACKY; 2, 2, 1, 1, 2, 1, 1 (8pts)
2. Abby MASON; 1, 1, 3, 3, 1, 3, 2 (11pts)
3. Sharon FERRIS; 3, 4, 2, 2, 3, 2, 4 (16pts)
FINN, after 7 of 11 races (1 discard)
1. Stuart BANNATYNE; 3, 1, 1, 2, 1, 2, 2 (9pts)
2. Ian BAKER; 1, 5, 4, 1, 3, 1, 3 (13pts)
3. Clifton WEBB; 6, 3, 2, 3, 2, 3, 1 (14pts)
TORNADO after 7 of 11 races ( 1 discard)
1. Chris DICKSON / Glen SOWRY; 1, 3, 2, 1, 3, 1, 1 (9pts)
2. Simon MANNING / Andy ROBERTSON; 3, 2, 1, 3, 5, 2, 2 (13pts)
3. Nigel WILLIAMS / Jeremy STEPHENSON; 2, 4, 4, 4, 1, 4, 5 (19pts)
Friday 17 March
Media Release from Yachting New Zealand Olympic Selection Trials
FINNS DOWN TO THE WIRE WITH A THREE WAY TUG OF WAR
McIntosh Master of the Mistrals
Eastern Beach, Auckland: The battle of the boardsailors has been completely
eclipsed by the tug of war that is emerging in the heavyweight Finn class.
Wellington's Stuart Bannatyne took an early lead in the regatta notching up
a string of 1st and 2nd finishes. However by the close of play yesterday,
Ian Baker had eroded that lead to 2 points (13pts), with Baker and North
Shore class youngster Clifton Webb chasing in 2nd (15pts) and 3rd (21pts)
Ian Baker has clearly determined not to give up with a battle on the
penultimate day of racing, with 3 races sailed today making up for lost time
earlier in the week.
In what has turned out to be a ding-dong battle, the lead has swung between
the three sailors all day. Webb won today's first race, leading Baker home,
and Bannatyne finishing 4th. Bannatyne's slight points advantage allowed him
to stay in the lead, but with Baker and Webb tied for 2nd with 15pts apiece.
Baker then rallied and won race 2, grabbing the single point lead with Webb
and Bannatyne, 2nd and 3rd over the line now tied up for 2nd on 17pts.
Webb then responded wining race 3, with Bannatyne 2nd and Baker 3rd, putting
the Norht Shore youngster a nose ahead (18pts) with the other two now equal
for 2nd on 19pts.
In one of life's cruel ironies, Webb then lost the lead when he dropped his
discard score. With only a 3 to drop, compared to 4th by the other two, Webb
is now relegated to 2nd equal with Baker, with Bannatyne only just retaining
his overnight lead.
Tomorrow's final and deciding race will be a cliff-hanger to say the least,
and most certainly a heavyweight battle, with the Olympic dreams of three
Finn sailors hanging in the balance.
Clifton Webb could well be kingmaker in this class, creating the crucial
points gap and putting a wedge between Baker & Bannatyne.
Three-time Mistral boardsailing world champion Aaron McIntosh sent out a
clear signal to the rest of the world this afternoon winning the first of
today's two races, and the regatta, almost 100 metres clear of his arch
rival Jon Paul Tobin on the penultimate day of the YNZ 2000 Olympic
The win gave McIntosh his 7th win of the regatta, and enough points to take
the series without needing to sail the last two races.
On finishing the first race, Tobin sailed straight up to McIntosh to offer
his congratulations. It was a poignant moment to see the pair, arch rivals
on the race-track but still firm friends off the water, shake hands.
But here can be only one winner, and yet again, McIntosh has come through
the Olympic selection sail-off, only this time it's Tobin not Bruce Kendall
who was left wondering what could have been.
YNZ Boardsailing coach Grant Beck has frequently credited McIntosh and Tobin
with being the world's fastest sailors downwind, and this week proved this.
This week's racing more resembled a match race, with the two sailors "tied
together with a piece of string" according to Beck.
Double Olympic medallist and back to back world champ Barbara Kendall
cruised home in 4th place in both of today's races, easily winning the women
's section of the regatta. Kendall, clearly relishing today's "chick's
breeze" as she put it, where race tactics rather than ability to merely hang
on in the heavy weather allowed her to easily keep up with the men.
The weather, which has wreaked havoc with the racing schedule all week, was
clearly determined to show who's boss again today. The sailors had to wait
on the beach until well beyond 12.30 when the seabreeze kicked in and the
first race was eventually able to start in a gentle 7 knots.
Sarah Macky sailed in text-book style to win the women's Europe class also
with two races to spare, outsailing top seed Abby Mason and ex-Olympian
Sharon Ferris. Macky won today's first race, gaining a sufficient points gap
over next placed Mason to take out the overall win without having to sail
the last race.
Macky (20), a previous winner of the ISAF Youth World Championship, is a
product of the YNZ High Performance Academy. Macky left the Laser Radial
youth class boat one year early, preferring instead to progress straight to
An 8th placing at the 1998 World Champs acted as a warning signal to the
rest of the girls on the international circuit including then top-ranked
Kiwis Mason and Ferris. Macky's progress through the class is what dreams
are made of.
YNZ High Performance Manager Peter Lester calls Macky "a natural", evidenced
by wins at the Sydney International Regatta in December and Auckland's
recent Royal Sun Alliance Regatta, as well as the NZ National Champs in
"This is an amazing achievement for Sam" says Lester, who has overseen
Macky's progress through the YNZ Academy, " she has done the work, and
combined with a significant natural talent, Sam absolutely deserves today's
Christchurch's Melinda Henshaw & Jenny Egnot were easy victors in the women'
s 470, 30 points clear of next best women's crew Rebecca Murdoch & Alesha
This result represents four years of hard work by this Canterbury duo who
have sailed together since the 1996 Olympic Trials for Atlanta where they
were ousted by Egnot's older sister Leslie, sailing with Jan Shearer. Egnot
& Shearer won the silver medal in the women's 470 in Barcelona in 1992.
Simon Cooke & Peter Nicholas in the men's 470 have timed their run
perfectly, winning three races in a row to bump Nick Taylor & Reece Brailey
off their top spot. A 1st and 2nd today puts them on 14 points and 1st
overall, ahead of Taylor & Brailey on 19pts. With one more race to sail
tomorrow, combined with a protest from today's racing, this result could
well go down to the wire.
This is also Cooke's second attempt at Olympic selection, having raced
unsuccessfully against brother Rohan in the trials for Atlanta. A win this
time round will set the record straight
YNZ OLYMPIC SELECTION TRIALS, Day 6 (Thursday 16 March)
MISTRAL SAILBOARD after 10 of 11 races (2 discards)
(men & women sailed & scored as a single fleet)
1. Aaron McINTOSH: 1, 1, 1, 2, 2, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1 (8pts)
2. Jon-Paul TOBIN: 2, 2, 2, 1, 1, 2, 2, 2, 2, 3 (14pts)
3. Bruce KENDALL: 3, 5, 4, 4, ocs, 4, 3, 3, 3, 1 (26pts)
7. Barbara KENDALL; 6, 4, 10, 10, ocs, 10, 6, 9, 4, 4 (53pts)
470 after 10 of 11 races (2 discards)
(men & women sailed as a single fleet)
1. Simon COOKE / Peter NICHOLAS: 5, 1, 4, 3, 1, dnf, 1, 1, 1, 2 (14pts)
2. Nicholas TAYLOR / Reece BRAILEY: 4, 3, 1, 2, 4, 1, 2, 3, 3, 4 (19pts)
3. Melinda HENSHAW / Jenny EGNOT; 1, 4, ocs, 5, 5, dns, 6, 2, 2, 3 (28pts)
EUROPE, after 10 of 11 races (2 discards)
1. Sarah MACKY; 2, 2, 1, 1, 2, 1, 1, 2, dns (11pts)
2. Abby MASON; 1, 1, 3, 3, 1, 3, 2, 3, 2 (16pts)
3. Sharon FERRIS; 3, 4, 2, 2, 3, 2, 4, 1, 1 (16pts)
FINN, after 10 of 11 races (2 discards)
1. Stuart BANNATYNE; 3, 1, 1, 2, 1, 2, 2, 4, 3, 2 (14pts)
2. Ian BAKER; 1, 5, 4, 1, 3, 1, 3, 2, 1, 3 (15pts)
3. Clifton WEBB; 6, 3, 2, 3, 2, 3, 1, 1, 2, 1 (15pts)
TORNADO after 7 of 11 races ( 1 discard)
1. Chris DICKSON / Glen SOWRY; 1, 3, 2, 1, 3, 1, 1, 1, 4, 2 (12pts)
2. Simon MANNING / Andy ROBERTSON; 3, 2, 1, 3, 5, 2, dsq, 3, 1, 3 (18pts)
3. Nigel WILLIAMS / Jeremy STEPHENSON; 2, 4, 4, 4, 1, 4, 4, 5, 2, 1
Photo by Richard Spranger