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Kiwi World Champions set to defend Title

Monday 27 November 2006

Kiwi World Champions set to defend Title

420 World Championships come to Takapuna in January 2007

Current World Champions in the 420, Carl Evans and Peter Burling will defend their title on Auckland waters just over a month from now. The 420 World Championships will be sailed off Takapuna Boating Club between 3 and 9 January 2007.

Recently named New Zealand's Young Sailors of the Year, Evans and Burling won the 2006 world title sailed off Spain's Canary Islands in early August this year. Just six months later, the young pair, both just 15 years old, is up against tough competition in an open age fleet to defend the title.

"It will be great to be able to defend our title in our home waters," notes Evans and Burling. "It should be an awesome competition and a great challenge with the best 420 sailors from around the world. The greater the obstacle, the more glory in overcoming it."

The New Zealand team was dominant in the open division at the 420 World Championships 2006 claiming not only the gold, but also the silver medal.
Evans and Burling clinched the Championship with a huge 25 point margin, while fellow team members Simon Cooke and Scott Illingworth took the silver.

The kiwi pairs had confirmed the 1-2 spots with one race to spare; neither sailed the final race. Both pairs will be sailing off Takapuna in January along with top competition from New Zealand, Australia, Great Britain, and Europe.

President of the New Zealand 420 Association, Bryan Davies is looking forward to hosting the event in New Zealand. "Our sailor's success at Grand Canary this year has proved a great springboard into what is going to be a fiercely contested event," notes Davies.

"The fact that two of our youth sailors have dominated both the World and European event this year is also very exciting and what better way to start the New Year than with World championship success in our home waters. We wish all our 420 sailor's success as they prepare for the trials that will be the basis for the selection of the 29 crews that will go forward to represent New Zealand."

"Special thanks must go to North Shore City and the Takapuna Boating Club who have taken on the event. We also acknowledge our generous sponsors BMW & TV3 who have not hesitated in backing our youth sailors."

Around 250 sailors from New Zealand and around the globe are expected to converge on Auckland's North Shore for the event, which includes an open's division and a women's division. Racing starts on 3 January 2007 with twelve races scheduled over seven days with the World Champions announced at a prize-giving ceremony on 9 January at the Bruce Mason Centre.

New Zealand will be represented by 29 crews who will be selected at two New Zealand trial events to be sailed in December. 15 kiwi boats can take part in the open division, where pairs can be either both male, or mixed gender. In the women's division New Zealand will be represented by 14 boats.

The 420 is a two handed sailing dinghy with a strong and highly competitive fleet that has emerged in New Zealand over recent years. There are 56,000 worldwide and the 420 is sailed at school, club, open, national and international levels.


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