D McKenzie – CYANZ 2024

The CYANZ ABD Group Classic Yacht Regatta saw smiles all round at the presentation on the final night. Three days of sailing with varying conditions and all races conducted.

2024 saw the biggest contingent of Aussies for many years. Anitra V from Sydney provided 4 participants, Philip Brown, Teresa Ferrier, Vickki Lincoln and Steve Cavanagh, the last 3 all new CYAA members. Melbourne sailors were Col Anderson, Jim Hutchinson, Janet Dean, Albert Doggett, Cecily Vial (all “first timers”), Doug Shields, Cathy Moore and David & Jennie McKenzie.

Proceedings started with dinner at the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron, a chance to renew long-standing friendships. Janet Dean even got to meet a long-lost cousin, Fiona Paul. Col Anderson was a “late arrival” for the first race, finding his flight left Melbourne on Thursday at 11.45pm, not 11.45am. Arriving in Auckland at 5.30am and after being surrounded by babies enroute (not his I’m assured) Col couldn’t claim he was rested for the first race.

Racing was in 5 divisions, 2 gaff, 2 Bermudan and one “modern” classic. Friday saw a relaxed race with the start at 4pm near the RNZYS clubhouse, heading east to a short loop within the Hauraki Gulf and finishing at Resolution buoy – part way back to the clubhouse. Strong results were achieved in race 1 – the Sydneysiders were on Corona, an almost 100-year-old Mullet Boat, and finished third. The rest of the contingent were on either gaffer Frances, modern mullet Orion II or K Class Katrina II, each of which finished first in their division.

Saturday and Sunday each had 2 races with the start in the centre of the Hauraki Gulf. Conditions were generally light on the Saturday, with the first race shortened, with many boats still failing to finish within the time limit. In the A Bermudan class, no-one reached the finish in time while every A Gaff boat did make the finish. Those large mains help in light winds! In the other three classes, only the first placed boat was within time.

Jim, Janet, David & Jennie were on Corona in B Gaff division. After finding more wind that most, they were one of the first boats to approach the finish line. But with about 100m to go, a hole was found. After drifting sideways beyond the finish line, a welcome light breeze finally saw them cross the line 25 minutes later. Many others were less fortunate. The start of the second race was delayed but the breeze eventually arrived, leading to a more satisfying outing and the full course was completed. Of the boats with Aussies aboard, Frances was the only race winner, no doubt aided by the skills of Steve Cavanagh and Vickki Lincoln.

While the forecast for Sunday was 10-15 knots, stronger winds dominated the day with 15-25 knots during the two races. Corona stayed at home given the forecast and its nominated crew Steve and Vickki switched to Tawera. Albert and Cecily opted for a rest day. Winning boats with Aussies on board were Doug and Cathy on Waitangi in race 1 but for the second race skipper Larry Paul called it quits in the gusty conditions.  Frances with Philip and David on board had a win in both races while Jennie, Jim and Janet on Katrina II has a 3rd and 1st, Teresa on Orion II had a 2nd and 1st, Col on Rawhiti two 3rds and Steve and Vickki on Tawera a 1st and 4th.

The Kiwis again put together an outstanding regatta with a huge number of sponsors. There were prizes galore for skippers at the presentation night and smiles all round. The Trans-Tasman Trophy was a closely fought affair. To take account of the many non-finishers in race 2, it was decided to count the best 4 of 5 races. Jim, Janet, Jennie and Teresa were equal 3rd on 8, Philip second on 7 and David first on 6. So the trophy now returns to Australia after being held by Penelope Carroll, with a Kiwi to take it home again after the CYAA’s 2024 Cup Regatta.

David McKenzie 26/2/24

David McKenzie - Trans Tasman 2024 (source: Hummingbird Photography)

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