Kiwis dominating Musto Junior Match Racing

Josh Junior and his Royal Port Nicholson Yacht Club team of Matthew Steven and Chris Jones. Junior and his team went through the second round of the Musto International Youth Match Racing on Sydney Harbour undefeated and finished in first place. Junior will now get to choose his opponent in the semi finals tomorrow from Will Mackenzie of the CYCA and the two Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron teams of Will Tiller and Scott Burling.

Will Mackenzie and his crew of Will Parker and Hamish Hardy finished the round robin stages in third place with 7 wins and only 2 losses.

The weather on the race track was perfect. The 8-10 knot north easterly built all day and another 45 races were completed finishing in 15-17 knots. There were no course changes required making the race committee and mark laying teams' jobs an easier one than yesterday.

There were many close races  with five teams tied for the third and only two of them required to fill third and fourth places to go through to the semi finals. With Mackenzie's strong showing today he comfortably took third place, leaving Peter Nicholas (RFBYC), Lucinda Whitty (CYCA), Jordan Reece (RSYS) and Burling to fight it out for fourth place.

By the end of the day, it was a three way tie between Nicholas, Whitty and Burling but with Burling having defeated both Whitty and Nicholas in his races today, he took the fourth place on a count back.

One of the races of the day was between Mackenzie and Whitty in Flight 2. They were fairly even for the first lap but Whitty received a penalty for not sailing her proper course at the leeward mark and carried it to the windward mark just keeping ahead of Mackenzie. As she did not have enough distance to complete her penalty and remain in the lead, she rounded the mark and waited for Mackenzie to catch up. Neither boat raised its spinnaker and the slow close cover continued until about ten boat lengths from the finish line. By this time this next match had overtaken this one while Whitty was still holding Mackenzie trying desperately to inflict a penalty on him to cancel out her own.

Mackenzie managed to overlap Whitty and in the process she unfortunately received a second penalty in a port starboard incident which must be taken immediately. Mackenzie was then able to put up his spinnaker and race to the finish line in the longest race of the day.

Racing will continue tomorrow (Thursday) with the sail offs for positions 5-10 to confirm these places and the forecast is similar to today so another great day of racing for all the teams.

By Pam Scrivenor/CYCA Youth Sailing Academy

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