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Competition/2011/Oceanics Slalom


Windsurfing NZ Slalom National Championships

16th to 20th February 2011

Otago Harbour, Dunedin, New Zealand

Mens Oceanic Results

1st - Rowen Law AUS021

2nd - Paul Vlietstra NZL 21

3rd - Isaac De Vries AUS 624

Dunedin's Gareth Wood held a clear six-point advantage over James Dinnis (Taranaki) and Rowan Law (Perth), to claim the national title, but as Wood was not racing the Formula 42 board, he did not qualify for the Oceania title. That title went to Law, from Paul Vliestra (Dunedin), second, and Terry Beentjes (Christchurch), third.

In the women's event, Annie Crombie (Christchurch) and Sue Bradley (Queenstown) were tied on 16.75 points each at the finish of competition on Thursday and the titles were decided by count back, and neither could be separated until Crombie's final ride on Thursday was taken into account, where she gained a .07 advantage over Bradley, and won her fourth national windsurfing slalom title.  Bradley however was the Oceanic Women's winner.

Lawrence Carey (Auckland) at just 16 years of age, won a highly competitive under-20 section, holding out Dan Meechan (Dunedin, 19), who finished second and Tom McGregor (Christchurch, 15) and Harry Reed (Auckland, 19), who tied for third.

Silver Fleet: George Cooper, David Richards and Roger Smith

The wind failed to kick in sufficiently consistently enough to run any races on day 3. A fickle NE teased the sailors with everyone rigging big (7m - 8.5m) and their biggest boards. Although a number managed to make it onto the course and climb up to the start line the wind never consistently reached the bottom marks so after several delays and a southerly change which also failed to kick in strongly enough the plug was pulled on the day's racing. A competition was held involving heaving the weights that the previous day were used to anchor rigs against the winds, followed by a BBQ. Saturday is the final day for racing, although Sunday is tagged as a backup day if the race committee decide another day is required to get a result.

 Day 2 saw stronger winds averaging probably around 20-25 knots and gusting 30 or more. In the morning round the winds were lighter and steadier making ideal conditions for 6-7m sailing and gybes were smooth. Later in the day the wind built (and built) until most were sailing 6m or less and some were down to the low 4m sails. The results changed accordingly as those sailors more used to the higher winds and difficult conditions started to move up the placings as completed gybes became more important than passing on the runs.

With 18 rounds completed (9 for the silver fleet) the discards are having an impact.  As sailors can discard their worst results, this allowed some to abandon heats when the conditions were too extreme. Sailors in the slalom42 category were tested as they were restricted to the 2 boards and 4 sails nominated at the start of the event. The conditions on Wednesday were outside the wind range some had allowed for and they were forced to sail overpowered or sit it out.

Day 1 got away well with 8 races completed in fresh conditions with most sailors on 6-7.5 m sails. The 50 competitors spent the day battling it out on Otago Harbour in a downwind slalom course just off shore opposite the Dunedin Windsurfing Club rooms (great spectator viewing). Winds built slightly during the day with many changing down a size later in the afternoon.  Fortunes changed frequently as some of the favoured sailors posted good results initially and then dropped the ball on subsequent heats to keep the top sailors in each class close.

Leaders after day 1 included Men - Gareth Wood, Masters - Terry Beentjes, Grand Masters - Tim Wood, Silver Fleet - George Cooper, Women - Annie Crombie and Youth - Laurence Carey.




The New Zealand Slalom Nationals will be open to all and any windsurfing equipment and the Slalom Oceanic Event will be in the formula 42 equipment schedule - meaning 4 sails and 2 boards that are nominated at registration. This decision means you can not use anything other than your nominated equipment during the whole event.

The Dunedin Windsurfing Association will host the 2011 Oceanic Slalom Championships on Otago Harbour, Dunedin, NZL, from 16th to 20th February.

Dunedin is the second-largest city in the South Island of New Zealand, and the principal city of the Otago Region. It is also considered to be one of the four main urban centres for historic, cultural, and geographic reasons.

The Dunedin urban area lies on the central-eastern coast of Otago, surrounding the head of Otago Harbour. The harbour and hills around Dunedin are the remnants of an extinct volcano. The city suburbs extend out into the surrounding valleys and hills, onto the isthmus of the Otago Peninsula, and along the shores of the Otago Harbour and the Pacific Ocean.

Notice of Race  /  Photos of the club and sailing area  /  Video - sailing on the harbour 

Thanks to the Interislander we are able to offer the North Island competitors coming a great deal on ferry costs, you can see the full details here. Quote group booking reference number WH5511 when making a booking. Please note that start date for this offer has been extended from 13th February to 10th February for those wanting to come down a bit earlier.

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