Please select your home edition
TNI Pindar SW Ads_728x90px-4 TOP

Oceanbridge Regatta: 49erFX goes down to the wire - Day 3

by Eduan Roos/Yachting NZ 26 Feb 21:05 NZDT 26 February 2023
Alex Maloney and Olivia Hobbs - 49erFX - Day 3 Oceanbridge NZL Sailing Regatta - Torbay Sailing Club - February 26, 2023 © Adam Mustill Photography

Alex Maloney and Olivia Hobbs have turned the tables, on the overnight leaders, to win a thrilling 49er FX showdown at the 2023 Oceanbridge NZL Sailing Regatta.

On the back foot after Saturday's racing, where they won the first race but saw Jo Aleh and Molly Meech claim the next four, Maloney and Hobbs found their form on Sunday to reel off four straight wins and claim victory by one point – backing up their triumph at the class national championships last week.

“We certainly didn’t expect to win all four races but we knew we needed something quite special today," Hobbs said.

"Yesterday was tough for us. We struggled with our boat set-up and made quite a few mistakes and today was just about identifying those mistakes, resetting and starting again.”

The duo now have their sights set on the start of the European season in Palma next month, leading up to the Sailing World Championships in The Hague later this year.

“We know there is still a lot that we need to improve on but we believe we have the potential to be competitive in all conditions. We just need to keep working hard in training – on our boat handling, fitness and getting a few of the last things together.”

In the 49er fleet, it was the opposite, with Scott McKenzie and Blake McGlashan taking a big early lead with three wins on the first day and holding on to win by one point over national champions Campbell Stanton and Will Shapland.

McKenzie and McGlashan finished fifth in their last two races to open the door to the chasing pack, but Stanton and Shapland could only snare two thirds, with Seb Menzies and George Lee Rush finishing the strongest, winning three of today's four races to finish third overall.

Sam and Pat Morgan, sailing in a borrowed boat after their mast snapped yesterday, also finished well with a win and two second places to take away some positives from the meet.

In the 29er class, Sean and Rowan Kensington completed a dominant display, winning seven of the nine races in the 17-boat fleet to win by a whopping 16 points.

Greta Pilkington came out on top in an enthralling battle in the ILCA 6, with two victories from eight races enough to see her get the gold after a tough day for overnight leader Olivia Christie.

Pilkington finished on 17 points, four ahead of Annabelle Rennie-Younger and eight ahead of George Lane.

She claimed victory despite having to discard an eighth place in the eighth and final race, with Rennie-Younger discarding a 10th.

Christie finished 12th, 17th and 11th in the three races today to finish fifth overall.

“It was quite a tricky day - stressful and tense at times but it was good to have some tight racing,” Pilkington said.

“My goal was just to focus on the process, rather than on the results, which I think worked quite well.”

Pilkington spent time with former Olympic gold medallist Jenny Armstrong after Saturday’s racing and her advice helped, Pilkington said.

Armstrong, who won 470 gold for Australia at the 2000 Sydney Olympics, is Yachting New Zealand’s ILCA 6 programme manager and women’s sailing manager.

“Jenny’s been a big help and a big inspiration whenever the fleet has needed her,” said Pilkington, who finished second to Rennie-Younger at the ILCA 6 nationals in January, with Christie third.

“We’re a close-knit group and there is definitely a lot of development coming through in the class, which is exciting to see.”

Meanwhile, Tom Saunders produced a perfect final day to win the ILCA 7 title, after winning all three races to beat rival George Gautrey by four points.

“It felt like a few things clicked out there today. Conditions were a bit lighter and it was good to see a range [of conditions] even though we only managed to get two days in [after day 1 was abandoned due to Auckland’s wild weather]," Saunders said.

“We have less than a month to go to Palma, so we’ll just keep working hard and hopefully improving.”

Cam Brown and Alex Morgan held off a late charge from Jed Potbury and Finn Balchin to win the 420 class by one point, while Derek Scott and Rebecca Hume won every race today to come from behind and clinch the 470 title.

New Zealand’s leading male windfoiler, Josh Armit, beat a group of top Dutch competitors to claim the iQFOIL 9M crown, after narrowly missing out at the class nationals a week ago.

“It’s been an excellent learning experience sailing against the Dutch because it’s hard to gauge your progress when you’re only training and competing in New Zealand,” Armit said.

“I enjoyed getting one back over them, too, especially with slightly tougher conditions today.”

Like many of his compatriots, Armit’s focus next turns to overseas.

“I’m pretty happy with how things have been going recently but once you get to Europe, it’s a whole new ball game.”

Max van der Zalm won the 8M fleet with four wins from six races, followed by Veerle ten Have and Jack Parr.

Earlier on Sunday, young Hugo Wigglesworth claimed the kitefoiling honours by two points from national champion Lochy Naismith, winning five of the weekend's nine races - including two of the three raced today.

Justina Kitchen won bronze.

Selected results from 2023 Oceanbridge NZL Sailing Regatta, hosted by Torbay Sailing Club.

420: 1. Cam Brown/Alex Norman 1 (6 UFD) 1 1 1 4 3 3 - 14 pts; 2. Jed Potbury/Finn Balchin 3 2 2 3 (4) 2 2 1 - 15 pts; 3. Joe Leith/Joshua Ferrissey 2 1 4 2 2 1 (5) 4 - 16 pts.

470: 1. Derek Scott/Rebecca Hume 2 2 1 (4 UFD) 1 1 1 1 - 9 pts; 2. Brittany Wornall/Sam Street 1 1 (2) 1 2 2 2 2 - 11 pts; 3. Adrian France/Marie France 3 3 3 2 3 (4 DNC) 4 DNC 4 DNC - 22 pts.

ILCA 6: 1. Greta Pilkington 4 4 2 2 1 3 1 (8) - 17 pts; 2. Annabelle Rennie-Younger 1 3 5 3 3 2 4 (10) - 21 pts; 3. George Lane 2 2 7 4 4 (10) 3 3 - 25 pts.

ILCA 7: 1. Tom Saunders 1 (2) 2 1 1 1 1 1 - 8 pts; 2. George Gautrey 2 1 1 2 2 2 (4) 2 - 12 pts; 3. Luke Cashmore 4 3 3 3 3 8 2 (11 UFD) - 26 pts.

29er: 1. Sean Kensington/Rowan Kensington 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 1 (5) - 9 pts; 2. Valentine Kayrouz/Cam McGlashan (9) 3 3 3 2 4 6 3 2 - 25 pts; 3. Will Mason/Lucas Day 4 (18 UFD) 4 2 5 6 3 4 1 - 29 pts.

49er: 1. Scott McKenzie/Blake McGlashan 1 1 1 3 (5) 2 3 5 5 - 21 pts; 2. Campbell Stanton/Will Shapland 3 2 3 4 2 (6) 2 3 3 - 22 pts; 3. Seb Menzies/George Lee Rush (6) 6 5 2 4 1 4 1 1 - 24 pts.

49er FX: 1. Alex Maloney/Olivia Hobbs 1 2 2 2 (3) 1 1 1 1 - 11 pts; 2. Jo Aleh/Molly Meech 2 1 1 1 1 (3) 2 2 2 - 12 pts; 3. Courtney Reynolds-Smith/Brianna Reynolds-Smith (3) 3 3 3 2 2 3 3 3 - 22 pts.

Kitefoil: 1. Hugo Wigglesworth 2 1 1 2 (3) 1 1 1 2 - 11 pts; 2. Lochy Naismith 1 2 2 1 1 2 (3) 3 1 - 13 pts; 3. Justina Kitchen (3) 3 3 3 2 3 2 2 3 - 21 pts.

iQFOIL 8M: 1. Max van der Zalm 1 1 (2) 1 2 1 - 6 pts; 2. Veerle ten Have 2 2 1 2 (4) 4 - 11 pts; 3. Jack Parr (3) 3 3 3 1 3 - 13 pts.

iQFOIL 9M: 1. Josh Armit 2 (3) 2 2 1 1 3 2 - 13 pts; 2. Joost Vink 1 (4) 3 3 4 3 1 1 - 16 pts; 3. Thomas Crook 4 1 4 4 3 5 (7) 4 - 25 pts.

Full results click here

Related Articles

Oceanbridge Regatta: Saunders, Gautrey slug it out
Tom Saunders, a former world champion in the ILCA 7, is leading the fleet after five races Tom Saunders, a former world champion in the ILCA 7 is leading the fleet after five races of the 2023 Oceanbridge NZL Sailing Regatta following a tough battle with teammate George Gautrey. Posted on 25 Feb
Oceanbridge Regatta: Wild weather cancels Day 1
Auckland's wild weather has seen sailing abandoned on Day 1 of the Oceanbridge NZL Sailing Regatta Auckland's wild weather has seen sailing abandoned on Day 1 of the 2023 Oceanbridge NZL Sailing Regatta. Posted on 24 Feb
Sailors back Cyclone Gabrielle support effort
The Auckland marine community has joined efforts to support victims of Cyclone Gabrielle The Auckland marine community has joined efforts to support victims of Cyclone Gabrielle, collecting truckloads of essentials in only a few days that will be distributed in Hawke's Bay and Gisborne. Posted on 23 Feb
Top Dutch sailors compete in iQFoil Nationals
Josh Armit wins second place at the iQFoil NZ Nationals against top international sailors Josh Armit, New Zealand's top male windfoiler, claimed an impressive second place at the class national championships at Manly Sailing Club, narrowly missing out on the top spot to world championship bronze medallist Huig-Jan Tak. Posted on 22 Feb
Olympic medalists go head to head in 49erFX
Olympic medalists clashed at the top of the leaderboard in the NZ 49erFX Nationals The sea spray had hardly settled on a breathless national championship at the weekend before Alex Maloney and Olivia Hobbs were already turning their attention to the next checkpoint on their road to the Paris Olympic Games. Posted on 22 Feb
Tom Saunders named Male & NZ Sailor of the Year
Womens WASZP champion Elise Beavis is named Aon Female Sailor of the Year Tom Saunders won the big prize, the Orbit World Travel Sailor of the Year Award, at the annual Aon Yachting Excellence Awards on Friday. Posted on 18 Nov 2022
Waka Huia wins North Sails Young 88 Owners title
Waka Huia wins North Sails Y88 Owners Regatta despite breaking tiller Waka Huia owner, Nick Gillies, thought his chances of winning the North Sails Young 88 Northern Owners Championships had shattered along with the tiller he broke on the eve of the regatta. Posted on 16 Nov 2022
Kiwi wins Bronze Medal at Para Sailing Worlds
John Buchanan finished third at the recent World Para Sailing Championships in Japan John Buchanan finished third at the recent World Para Sailing Championships in Japan as para sailing looks to return to the Paralympic Games. Posted on 2 Nov 2022
Kiwi windfoilers show form at Worlds
New Zealand sailors performed well at the recent iQFoil world championships in Brest New Zealand sailors performed well at the recent iQFoil world championships in Brest, with Veerle ten Have making the Medal Race, and Josh Armit winning five of his 14 races. Posted on 27 Oct 2022
Takapuna top qualifier at Sec Schools Nats
Takapuna Grammar went through as top qualifiers after the double round robin at the Nat Sec Schools Takapuna Grammar went through as top qualifiers after the double round robin, along with Glendowie College and Napier Boys' High School. None of those schools have ever won the national title. Posted on 6 Oct 2022