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Posts Tagged ‘auckland’

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Screen Shot 2015-08-12 at 10.59.47 AMMillions of sailing fans – Kiwis and foreigners both – have wondered why Grant Dalton remains at the head of the most famously choking team in the history of sailing.  After some fatefully wrong calls in San Francisco – including some really personal inter-team shit that still hasn’t seen the light of day – you’d think the New Zealand public, who partially funded the team, would have gotten their calls for blood answered.

But that never happened, and in a rare instance of good journalism rearing its head inside yachting, the boys from Canvas published a deep and interesting look at one of the hardest working – if deeply flawed – individuals in the sport.  His marriage woes, that fateful call to allow Oracle the lay day, his sailing ability, and plenty of other sticky subjects; here’s an excerpt:

It was at his grandparents’ waterfront house that Dalton had an epiphany. He was at the window when Heath’s Condor, with Peter Blake on board, hoved into view as it completed a leg of the 1977 Whitbread Round the World Race.

“It came around North Head with this giant yellow spinnaker and I thought, ‘holy shit’. Right down to where every seagull was sitting I can remember that place in time and I knew that was what I wanted to do.”

He rang his mum, Rose, another huge influence, to tell her he was chucking in his accountancy job that Christmas to do a Fiji race. On his return, he went the tried-and-true method and started sailmaking to broaden his skill base. He got a spot on a round-the-world boat, loved it, and decided to get his own boat for the next one. “And that’s what I’ve been doing ever since, basically.”

And here we enter another tricky port-tack in the Dalton story: his skills as a sailor. You do not have to go far to find someone who will denigrate Dalton’s yachtsmanship. Montgomery, who has known Dalton since his early Whitbread days, says the man himself would never confess to “being a rock star round-the-buoys sailor”, and he will correct anybody that claims Dalton won a Whitbread by saying he won the maxi class only.

Read the full story here.

 

August 12th, 2015 by admin

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You can be forgiven for not realizing that Jean Le Cam and Bernard Stamm won the Barcelona World Race the other day, and we congratulate them for finishing a task that’s never easy, even if their only real competitor dismasted shortly after the start.  Stamm adds the BWR to his other major victory in the also sparsely populated 2005 Velux5Oceans (née Around Alone) Race, and he’ll try to break a string of bad Vendee finishes next year.  Second place Guillermo Altadill and Jose Munoz will cross tomorrow, five days after the winner.  The rest of the 7-boat fleet is similarly spread out.

This episode of the BWR suffered from a small and widely varied fleet of Open 60s with a wide spread in performance, and because of this, the race seemed more about adventure than competition.  Fortunately, the lack of boat-on-boat battles has meant time for some of the skippers to write wonderful prose from the middle of the ocean as well as sharing their experiences with tens of thousands of Spanish schoolchildren involved through a science education program.  It may not have been a great race, but they’ve done great things with it.

The most compelling stories were unsurprisingly coming off a boat with the most problems; Nandor Fa and Conrad Colman’s troubled Spirit of Hungary, and we caught up with our old pal Conrad during a repair stopover in Auckland a couple of weeks ago.  Colman is funny, smart, and honest, and he and Clean have an entertaining 40-minute chat about those troubles and much, much more, in the video above.  And be sure to dig through Conrad’s full blog here – it really is some of the best race reporting we’ve ever seen.

We apologize for taking so long to get it up here, but with Hungary’s 8,000 nm deficit in the race, we figured it wasn’t all that time-sensitive.  Thanks to Petey Crawford for finally sorting us out and making the video pretty.  Get some of his top quality video work for your regatta here.

 

March 29th, 2015 by admin

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After the loss of their J/111 Django, owners AJ and Atka Reid turned lemons into lemonade and commissioned a brand new raceboat, and their stoke is complete today with this gorgeous Bakewell-White 37 launched today as Anarchy.  We’ll have the story from AJ himself as soon as he’s got a few hours in, but in the meantime, go check out this great gallery from our friends at Livesaildie.  This shot from Brad Davies.   Like the Anarchy Sailing Team here for a very entertaining bunch of guys and gals.

March 15th, 2015 by admin

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For our money Auckland is probably the second-best city in the world for yacht racing.  It’s like San Francisco with a fraction of the shitty weather and pretentious douchebags, and we’ve got an hour of cityfront racing coming to you live from The City of Sails…now.

For the pre-race Press Conference, head over here.

 

March 13th, 2015 by admin

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Homicidal monster supercyclone Pam is tearing through Vanuatu today with gusts to a stupefying 175 knots (while an amazing 3 more cyclones are sweeping the Southern hemisphere) and she’s now headed towards Aotearoa.  It confuses the hell out of us – we thought killer storms were consigned to Australia, just like venomous jellyfish/toads/reptiles, giant man-eating crocodiles, surfer-loving Great Whites, and debtor’s prison exiles. It turns out that New Zealand tropical cyclones are now (or since 2011, anyway), a thing.

After consulting with team skippers and Boatyard leadership, Volvo Ocean Race Control has delayed the start of the Auckland to Brazil leg until at least Tuesday.  This throws a logistical wrench into the works for both Auckland and Brazil, but in the meantime, we get spectacular conditions for today’s Auckland In-Port Race.  Above you’ll find a short promo, and check back here in about 5 hours for the live link to some great racing.  Join a few hundred of your closest friends to discuss it here. 

If you really need your sailing fix, here’s some day 3 Extreme Sailing Series analysis and a preview to tomorrow’s finale for their Oman stop.

 

 

March 13th, 2015 by admin

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It’s a 3-way battle with just a mile of separation as Xabi Fernandez’s MAPFRE holds a slim lead over Azzam and the Dong in the last couple of hours before the Volvo frontrunners hit Auckland.  Genny and the live feed start now!  (or very soon, anyway).  Click the player and compare photos, performance stats and trivia in the thread.

 

February 27th, 2015 by admin

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Screen Shot 2015-02-16 at 1.24.40 PMWhile the world’s sailing media is reporting an Antipodean battle between Sydney and Auckland for the right to host the “America’s Cup Qualifiers”, it emerged this morning that Sydney has most likely lost it to the Kiwis, meaning ETNZ should have the funding soon to get their challenge really rolling.  Did the Harbour ever have a real shot, or do they join Rome, Newport, and San Diego as yet another pawn in Coutts’ repeat-as-needed negotiating program?

Premier Mike Baird’s events team has been slammed for “wasting everyone’s time” after it let the opportunity to stage prestigious America’s Cup races on Sydney Harbour slip away to Auckland.

The America’s Cup organisers are set to award the qualifier races to New Zealand after Sydney’s events tsar, Destination NSW chief executive Sandra Chipchase, told them she needed another eight weeks to make a decision on whether to lodge a formal bid.

It is believed Auckland secured the event — which organisers estimated could have attracted 40,000 international visitors and 15,000 domestic tourists to Sydney — for less than $10 million.

“For this opportunity not to be treated seriously is just a massive waste of everyone’ time and a missed chance,’’ said veteran promoter Tony Cochrane, who was trying to generate interest from Sydney.  “This is not how world-class event organisations operate when it comes to securing what is clearly a world-class event.”  Opposition Leader Luke Foley said he feared the government had been “asleep at the wheel”. “We have to show we are hungry for these lucrative money spinners otherwise you miss the boat,’’ Mr Foley said.

Read on, and shout about it in America’s Cup Anarchy here.  Tip o’ the hat to previously self-exiled but recently returned AC Anarchy addict “Stingray”.

 

February 16th, 2015 by admin

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SALogo

Remember Kiwi skipper AJ Reid, skipper of the ill-fated and now very waterlogged J/111 Django, which sank on delivery after the Auckland-Fiji Race?  As we mentioned in September, Reid is building a brand new Bakewell-White rocket ship at Yachting Developments, and he sent us a note this morning about her progress.

“Hiya Clean, you’ll be amused to know that the new boat is called Anarchy!  Check out our Facebook Page for updates on the build, and yes, you’re welcome aboard even though you’re clearly bad luck!”

Big thanks to sailing/adventure photojourno Jen Edney for a little last second photoshop work, and head over here to see her latest work from the VOR in Cape Town.

 

November 17th, 2014 by admin

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As the 35th America’s Cup “Deadline Day” hit us here in the US,  The Royal NZ Yacht Squadron became the first team to formally announce that it ponied up the millions required for a challenge to Golden Gate Yacht Club, and that Emirates Team NZ would be their representatives. “We look forward to working with the other teams to create a great event. [emphasis ours]“.  

The solo Kiwi news release, along with Dalton’s emphasis on ‘working with the other teams’ tells us that Russell and Grant definitely haven’t kissed and made up; you can expect a more coordinated flurry of news today as ‘Russell’s Four” – the teams that pledged their lukewarm support to Coutts and the Cup a couple of weeks ago – are likely to have worked with AC AlphaWhat on a distribution schedule.  In other words, when the Cup is ready to tell you who challenged and who is the new Challenger of Record, they’ll fucking tell you, you impatient twat!

Meanwhile, RadioSport NZ’s D’arcy Waldegrave grabbed Mr. Clean for a morning drive time chat about the challenges the Kiwis face on “The Sauce”, also known as “New Zealand’s Loosest Sports Radio Show“.  Listen to it above.

 

August 8th, 2014 by admin

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UPDATE: STATEMENT FROM J/BOATS:

“J/Boats have been in contact with the owner Andy Reid since the incident happened, in fact he will be in Newport soon on a scheduled trip already.  We’re sorry to hear about the breakage and have already commenced our own internal review on the circumstances that may have led to the rudder post failure, working with our team of engineers, builders and materials specialists.  In the meantime, our condolences to the delivery crew and hope that all are well and in good health and spirits despite the circumstances.”

We got news late last night that our most awesome Kiwi pal AJ Reid lost his new-last-year J/111 Django while on delivery back from Fiji.  You’ll probably remember Django as the boat that won its first-ever race while handicapped by our own Mr. Clean aboard, and then went on to some great results in New Zealand and then last week’s reported finish from the Fiji Race.  Here’s a note we got from crew coordinator and Doyle NZ sailmaker Andy Pilcher late last night, and you can discuss the J/111 over in the thread:

For those that haven’t heard, I’m sorry to announce that Django Racing has been abandoned about 300 miles North of Auckland, on her way home from Fiji.  At approx 11:00am NZ Time this morning, in winds averaging over 50 knots and seas over 5 meters, the rudder stock snapped between the two bearings, leaving the rudder swinging underneath the boat, trying to rip itself free.

The delivery crew sent out a request for assistance and set the liferaft up for immediate deployment, keeping in touch with Maritime Operations throughout the day via Satellite phone.  An Airforce P-3 Orion came by the boat to do a flyover, and fortunately,  NZ Navy Frigate Otago was in the region.  The Navy reached Django around 6 PM on Monday evening, when the crew made a hairy but successful transfer via lifeboat onto the Frigate.

We have spoken to the crew and they’re safe and well, albeit very relieved and a bit shaken.   I suspect that the reality of the situation may not have set it yet for them.  Delivery skipper Ben Costello along with Bex Heilkema and Andrew Cooke  all responded exceptionally well, and did everything they could have done in the most seamanlike manner.   The boat was still floating when they transferred onto the frigate, and the rudder had not yet sheared off.  But with large cracks appearing around the area of the bottom bearings at the time of rescue and more gales and big seas forecast, we don’t know how long she will last.

Otago is heading directly back to Auckland and we expect the crew to be safely back on land shortly.  That’s all we know for now, we just wanted to let everyone know the facts as they currently stand.

Thanks for your thoughts and wishes,

Andy

 

July 8th, 2014 by admin

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