Platus Down Under
New Zealand’s brand new fleet of Platu 25’s were christened this weekend in the New Zealand National Keelboat Championships hosted by Royal Akarana Yacht Club in Auckland. The club has imported eleven of the boats from Singapore. This core fleet is professionally managed and they hope to sell another 10-20 boats to private owners, hopefully filling a gap in the NZ sailing scene for a small, low cost one-design boat that can go almost anywhere and do pretty much anything. The Nats were previously sailed in the Farr MRX fleet, also a great, well maintained fleet of very close one-design boats – but they couldn’t be more different in performance. Sailors are saying the Platus have all of the performance characteristics of a dinghy in terms of acceleration and turning, but the next minute they are like an old school keeler, broaching and Chinese gybing. The event was won by Dean Barker, with 17-year old 470 Olympian Peter Burling finishing second. Now there is somebody to watch for the future. Photo by Royal Akarana Yacht Club.