Club coach optimistic about race
Eight young Porirua Optimist yacht sailors descended on Oriental Bay to represent Paremata Boating Club at the inaugural Wellington Optimist Team Racing Championship recently.
The February 5 competition drew the cream of young sailing talent from Wellington and the lower North Island to Royal Port Nicholson Yacht Club to determine who would be the top club team racers in this part of the country.
Forty-eight sailors in 12 teams sailed a round-robin format with close and intense sailing, said Paremata coach Roger Cook.
Paremata’s two teams – (Pink) Jaymin Southee, Raymond Tressider, Will Martel, Finn Matthews; (Black) Lauren McNeil, Sean Irving, Marcel DeWilde, Lachlan McDonald – are relatively inexperienced.
Cook said it was their first exposure to teams racing and the large waves of Wellington harbour.
‘‘ But their huge smiles and neverending chatter showed that they were up to the challenge, learned lots and, most importantly, had heaps of fun,’’ he said.
In the finals, the experienced Napier White proved too strong for Muritai Purple (Eastbourne) and took out the champion’s title with a resounding victory in the sail-off for first place.
Paremata’s Pink and Black teams were 10th and 11th respectively.
Cook believes with another year’s experience under their belt, they will be a force to be reckoned with in 2012.
In the meantime, they will do battle again in the Wellington Optimist Championship at Onepoto on February 26 and 27, and the Primary Schools Championship at Plimmerton on March 3.