April News, Opti nationals Sunny Auck Champs
20 Apr 2015

Hi All,
I’m back overseas, this time on the French Rivera in the South of France, Hyeres.
This is the first of the “new” ISAF World Cup events with a capped number of sailors being the top 40 sailors in each class.
This has greatly reduced the numbers in most classes, meaning more space, more parking but less of a “festival” atmosphere.
It will be interesting to see this new format goes, but it seems very good if your in the top 40 – quite hard if your starting out and are outside this quota.
The day after arriving home to NZ I flew to Wellington for the Optimist nationals, which was to be the last day of racing, but true to predictions the day was blown out with too much wind. However prize giving and NZ Team naming took place.
It was great to see Doyle and J Sails all in the top ten with an even split of 5 Doyle sails and 5 J Sails. Also very pleasing was to see 8 Winner boats in the top 10 with team Winner sailor Sam Bacon winning the event and Winner/Forceracing Team sailor Will Shapland also making the Worlds team. Robbie McCutcheon Team Winner ended in 6th overall but will have all to play for next season as will Josh Berry.
In other Optimist news Brazilian sailor with a Doyle Red is going very well at the South American Champs showing again the Doyle Optimist sails are performing on the World stage!
While back in NZ over the weekend of the 11th and 12th of April the Sunburst Auckland Champs were held. Cameron and I decided to do this even though we hadn’t sailed a Sunburst for a couple of months after doing the JollyBoat and being away.
The first day we had a comedy of errors, being in the wrong rig setting in too much wind, being over at the start and having to return, fouling another competitor and doing turns, and missing out on a 40 degree windshift.
Nick and Flynn Olson took advantage of the day, sailing awesomely and putting on the pressure to get 3 wins, with us in 2, 2, and a drop race of 4th.
Day 2 dawned with a moderate breeze and with extended family portrait photos being done that morning it was a super early rig up. After the general stress of trying to get 5 kids to smile at the same time and adults trying their best to stay calm and happy – it was a quick dash to Pt Chev yacht club and a just on time launch ready to race.
We had a much better day sailing well, and going fast especially downwind to have 3 wins to be tied on points with Nick and Flynn. By winning the last race we won on count back.
It is great to see the fleet so competitive and good to see we are sailing ok as a class, as one of the top 420 teams jumped in a new boat to have a go and did well to come 3rd overall but they never dominated, meaning this is great for the Sunburst class to know that the level in the class is high.
Today is Sunday here in Hyeres, and this morning has been stormy with a Gale force easterly blowing and rain. It is just coming right now. There are 2 more days of training before the regatta starting on Wednesday with 4 days of fleet racing (all 40 boats on 1 line) before the top 10 medal race on Sunday. After this I am off to Rio with the boys for a training camp with the Kiwis for 10 days, before heading home and getting my feet under the desk at what will be a newly renovated Doyle Sails NZ office space!

The future depends on what we do in the present.

Mahatma Gandhi