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Keelboat sailors perform in Spain

Keelboat sailors perform in Spain
Yachting New Zealand Official Media Release
Date: 9 April 2004

Issued By: Julie Worth

Yachting New Zealand is yet to select sailors in the Yngling class to compete at the Olympic Games in August, but both the New Zealand crews working towards nomination are showing that they can perform at the top in large international regattas.

Currently in 3rd place overall is the team of Alesha Thorpe/Michelle Vinsen/Karen Lambert and with only one more day of racing to go (2 more races) they will be hoping to hold onto this podium position. This is a fantastic result so far for these young sailors with top ten results in all but 2 races.

Only 10 points back is the fellow kiwi crew of Sharon Ferris/Joanna White/Kylie Jamieson who after a shakey start have come back with a vengence in the last four races to jump up the leader board.

These two crews are using this regatta as a build up to their Selection trials and World Championships which will be held in Spain in May this year.

They are not the only New Zealanders vying for Olympic nomination. The battle in the Finn class between Dean Barker, Clifton Webb and Peter Fox continues, with Barker extending a small lead of 11 points over Webb with Fox another 5 points back. With one more day of racing to be sailed Dean Barker will be hoping to extend this lead a little further. The second selection regatta for the Finn class will be the European Championships to be held in France in May.

With only one race to go in the laser class Hamish Pepper lies in sixth place overall - a result he must be happy with, given the late decision he was forced into making and heading to Europe very early with his olympic nomination in doubt. With that no longer an issue for Pepper he has shown in this regatta he has the ability to finish at the front of the fleet. This will give him a good confidence boost as he continues his preparation for Athens.

Another kiwi to jump up the leader board is Europe sailor Sarah Macky. Currently in 5th place (i a fleet of 126), Sarah will be a definite medal hopeful for New Zealand in Athens.

Other New Zealand results are:

470 Women
Shelley Hesson/Linda Dickson - 15th
Melinda Henshaw/Jan Shearer - 19th

470 Men
Andrew Brown/Jamie Hunt - 20th

Tornado
Aaron McIntosh/Mark Kennedy - 27th

A full set of results can be found at http://www.trofeoprincesasofia.org/dinghy/index.html

Racing concludes Saturday morning (New Zealand) time.


Upcoming World Championships
New Zealand sailors are going to be very busy over the next two weeks as our boardsailors and 49er sailors both compete in their World Championships

Mistral World Boardsailing Championships
April 11th - 17th, Turkey
New Zealand sailors competing: Barbara Kendall, JP Tobin, Tom Ashley, Matt McCormick, Anna Eason and David Robertson
Although Olympic nomination has been announced in this class, JP Tobin will be coming out at this regatta with a point to prove after his disappointing Olympic selection trial. This will be the first Open World Championships for ex-youth sailors Anna Eason and David Robertson

Event website http://www.mistralworlds.com/

49er World Championships
April 14th - 19th, Athens
New Zealand sailors competing: Adam Beashel/Ed Smyth
Beashel/Smyth have not had the ideal build up to this World Championsihps, having had difficulties in the last few days clearing their boat through customs - the logistics of shipping equipment half way around the world. They are now looking to find a charter boat to still make the start line on time next week. This is an important regatta for Beashel and Smyth as they work towards olympic nomination.

Event website http://www.eio.gr/2004_49er/index.html

Media releases will be posted throughout the regatta.

ENDS

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