The 2020 Centreport youth international match racing championships hosted by the Royal Port Nicholson yacht club saw new teams appear and a new format for the event. This years regatta saw teams travel over from Australia, down from Auckland, and up from the South Island to compete in the 2020 CentrePort Youth International Match Racing Championships.
The two Sydney teams consisted of Jed Cruickshank (#200) from the Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron and Cam Whiteside (#531) from the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club. Aucklander Robbie McCutcheon (#234) representing the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron traveled down to compete in this year’s event.
A new appearance on the match racing scene was Harry Edwards from the Queen Charlotte Yacht Club located at the top of the South Island. Representing the Royal Port Nicholson Yacht Club was local sailor Albert Stanley (#200).
This year the regatta trailed a new format for the event. The teams were divided into two groups. Group A consisted of the representing clubs’ primary skippers. Group B was the representing clubs’ secondary skippers. It was a good opportunity for the secondary skippers to gain ranking points and regatta experience.
Day one consisted of shifty patchy breeze on Lambton Harbour. After two round robins being completed for group A, the local team from the Royal Port Nicholson Yacht Club skippered by Albert Stanley lead the regatta, winning all but one race.
Day two was the start of the group B’s round robin. The race track located in Evans Bay for the day had perfect breeze rolling from the south. Unfortunately due to gear failure on one of the boats, racing for the day was cut short allowing time to get the boat ready for the next day of racing.
Day three was finals day for group A. The race course was situated around in Evens bay which had a light southerly breeze. Semi-finals match one was Stanley (RPNYC) vs Whiteside (RPAYC). After a tough battle between the two, Stanley came out on top beating Whiteside 2-1, scoring a place in the finals.
Semi-finals match two was McCutcheon (RNZYS) taking on Cruickshank (RSYS). With both teams on match point to win, McCutcheon remained calm under the pressure, scoring his team a spot in the finals against Stanley. After four tight races between Stanley and McCutcheon, McCutcheon was on dominant form taking out the 2020 CentrePort Youth International Match Racing Championships.
With group A and the overall winner being decided on day three, round-robin two for group B still needed to be completed. Finally, Wellington lived up to its title, delivering a strong breeze of 20 knots, gusting up to 30 at times. Jack Littlechild from the Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron didn’t seem to be phased by the conditions, taking out group B.
RNZYS – Robbie McCutcheon,
RPNYC – Albert Stanley
RPAYC – Cam Whiteside
RSYS – Jed Cruickshank
QCYC – Harry Edwards
RSYS – Jack Littlechild
RPNYC – Wilbur Stanley
RNZYS – Serena Woodall
QCYC – Jack Bennet
RPAYC – Jemma Hodgson
From the Royal Port Nicholson Yacht Club, we would like to say a big thank you to the volunteers, umpires, race control, Black and Gold, supporters and CentrePort for making the event happen.