North Sails LOFT NEWS
THE SAILING SEASON HAS GOT UNDERWAY WITH A BANG FOR THE NORTH SAILS ONE DESIGN TEAM, WITH BOATS WITH NORTH SAILS WINNING THE OPTIMIST NORTH ISLAND CHAMPS AND ELLIOTT 5.9 NATIONALS.
Young Wakatere sailors Josh Hyde and George Lee Rush finished first and second in the gold fleet at the Opti competition, sailed at Lake Taupo in early November. Jack Olsen from Plimmerton, who also uses a North sail, finished first in the green fleet.
Derek Scott of North Sails One Design says all three sailors are have been using North sails, which are available in several different cuts.
The next big event for the highly competitive Optimist fleet is the Sir Peter Blake Regatta, hosted by Torbay in early December, before the Auckland champs in late January.
Scott himself sailed in the Elliott 5.9 nationals, crewing for Stu Clarke, who finished second. The regatta was won by Craig Satterthwaite, who had North salesman Matt Kelway on his crew. Both the two leading boats, and third-placed Sam Edwards, had North sails, with the result coming down to the last two of twelve races to decide the winner between Satterthwaite and Clarke.
Scott says North hopes to soon introduce 3Di sails into the class, with moulded mains and jibs to be available.
‘It’s going to be really good to bring 3Di technology to the class, as the class rules specify polyester cloth but these sails will have much less stretch,’ he says. ‘We’ll be getting some test sails soon and hope to have them more widely available next season.’
Scott has also been sailing a Paper Tiger, competing at the class’s sprint regatta at Lake Rotorua in October. Boats with North sails finished first, second and third.
North sails were to the fore at the Young 88 owners championship, sailed out of Bucklands Beach Yacht Club in mid-November. Auckland’s fickle spring weather meant only three of the five scheduled races could be sailed, but Raging Hormones, with North Sails New Zealand sales and marketing manager Andrew Wills aboard, took the gun in two of the races to win the regatta, with Slipstream 3 second and Waka Huia, with Scott and Kelway aboard, winning the other race to take out third. All three top boats were using North sails, with Raging Hormones and Waka Huia both running a full North inventory.
Other recent results include the OK Dinghy ‘Rum Bucket’ regatta, held at Labour Weekend at Wakatere Boating Club. The event was won by former Olympian Dan Slater, using a new North KAP-1 all-purpose sail, with a deep shape right down to the foot, allowing for power downwind and in the lighter wind ranges. Scott says Slater and fellow sailing legend Rod Davis have also been working with the North team to develop and test a new OK sail design.
From here the summer season is really starting to heat up, with the large Napier Sailing Club summer regatta in late November, then a range of national championships in January.
‘It’s going to be a busy summer, but hopefully a very successful one,’ says Scott.