2013 North Harbour Masters Report

The first Auckland Masters regatta of the season, the North Harbour Masters, was held at Pupuke on Sunday. A strong turnout of 27 boats enjoyed a challenging days sailing, with a 8 – 12 knot shifty southerly providing opportunities for all.  The conditions prompted several sailors who normally sail Radials to step up to full rig for the day, including World Radial Apprentice champion Scott Leith who ended up a convincing winner of the 5 race series after an unfortunate course error in the last race cost Whangarei visitor Kris Decke a share of the points lead.
Consistency proved a problem for all in the shifty conditions, as both pressure and direction changes caused significant place gains and losses regularly both on and off the wind in the tightly bunched fleet.  Scott and Kris dominated the Apprentices.  The Grand Masters were won by Nick Page, who managed second overall after both John Showell and Mike Keeton fell foul of the rounds the ends rule in the third race, when race officer Garth Briden sought to impose more discipline on the start line after a couple of recalls. Peter Kempkers was the first Master in 5th overall while Georgi Yankov led the small group who elected to stay with the Radial . Full results are available through the Pupuke website http://homepages.vodafone.co.nz/~garthb/results/nhm13rsl.htm
It was great to see a strong Masters fleet turning out at this stage of the season. Several were using this as a warm up for the Masters Worlds in Oman next month and many in the fleet will be heading to the North Islands in Napier on the weekend of 23/24 November and to the Nationals in Nelson (16 to 19 January), which is looking to have a strong masters turnout.

- Nick Page