The perfect race
An Aotea College sailing team has won the 2011 College Sport Wellington Match Racing Championships.
Crew of four – Josh Cook ( helm), Michael Cook ( mainsheet), Hannah Corke (mid-bow) and Amberlee Faint-Rafferty (bow) – took on six other college teams, including a second from Aotea, in six-metre keelboats in Wellington Harbour on Saturday, September 10.
Fourth after the round robin, Aotea won their semifinal, leading to a final against Rongotai College. After losing their first two races in the best of five finals, the crew dug deep in the freshening breeze to win the third by a whisker and force a penalty on Rongotai in the fourth, says Aotea coach and proud parent Roger Cook.
They then sailed a perfect race in the fifth to take the prize.
A second Aotea crew finished seventh.
Cook says the teams honed their match racing skills over winter, and the perfect conditions saw some exciting racing, often close to the wharves and rocks as each skipper tried hard to control their rival and force penalties.
He says it was a great spectacle for locals and visitors in town for the Rugby World Cup.
The other colleges taking part were Rongotai (2nd), Hutt International Boys School – Gautrey (3rd), Wellington College and a combined crew from Onslow/St Mary’s/Wellington Girls’.