Bay of Islands a sea of sails as boating spectacle returns – Northern Advocate

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The tall ship R Tucker Thompson jostles for space just ahead of the noon start off Russell Wharf. Photo / Peter de Graaf

Near-perfect sailing conditions and a field associated with almost 80 vessels marked a welcome return to normality for Russell’s annual Tall Ships and Classical Invitational Race on Saturday.

Last year’s race had to be replaced by a scaled-down event called Not the Tall Ships Race, minus the usual hāngī and post-race party, so Northland’s boating enthusiasts were eager in order to get back on the water and back together with old mates.

The 2023 event — always one of the particular highlights of the Bay of Islands’ social and sailing calendar — featured a separate division with regard to junk-rigged vessels for the first time.

Nine junks entered, with Shoestring , skippered by Gordon Gregg, taking home typically the brand-new trophy, and the Murphy family of Whangārei claiming line hours with Arcadian .

The classic invitational was won by Ōpua sailing veteran Cees Romeyn, 80, on Nexus , with his daughter and granddaughter as crew. Caprice , a wooden yacht known as a 30 Square Metre which was skippered by Brett Avery, took out line honours.

The wooden ketch Karie-L triumphed in the tall ships division, while Zindabar , an Elliott 1850, was once again first across the line.

Perhaps the biggest head-turner in the all-comers division was the racing sloop Innismara , built in the 1960s and fully restored after being badly damaged by fire.

The particular 67-footer shot straight to be able to the head of this fleet after the noon starting signal and completed the 16-nautical mile course to Nine Pin plus back in just a fraction more than one hour and 45 minutes.

The winner on handicap within the all-comers was Eliminator .

The tall ships and classics competed on a 12nm course, while the junks raced 10nm.

This year’s tall ships race was the first to have a division dedicated to junk-rigged vessels, including, from left, Shoestring, Gipsy Rose and Arcadian. Photo / Peter de Graaf
This year’s tall ships race was the first to have a division dedicated to junk-rigged vessels, including, from left, Small, Gipsy Rose and Arcadian. Photo / Peter de Graaf

Russell Boating Club commodore Bruce Mitchinson said Saturday’s conditions were just about ideal.

“Most years we have to wait around for a sea breeze to kick in, but we had at least a 15-knot north-easterly off-wind at the start. We don’t get that too often. It meant everyone was going for it in addition to lined up from the start. ”

Some crews took the race seriously, but for many, it was their one competitive event of the year.

It was the chance to catch up with old friends, admire each other’s boats, and even enjoy the spectacle regarding the Bay of Islands crammed with sails together with classic vessels dating back a century or more.

The gaff-rig schooner South Seas (far right) gets away to a perfect start after the starting signal sounds off Russell Wharf. Photo / Peter de Graaf
The gaff-rig schooner South Seas (far right) gets away to a perfect start after the starting signal sounds off Russell Wharf. Photo / Philip de Graaf

Mitchinson said it was a new big event for a small club, and a huge effort by the volunteers who put on often the hāngī, many of whom weren’t even sailors.

“They want to show how big a hāngī they can put on — it’s one of your biggest in New Zealand — and show people what Russell is all about. ”

The prize-giving and hāngī were followed by the traditional post-race party, with the exact acoustic Windjammers playing in the clubhouse and covers band Tangent rocking the marquee.

TOP RESULTS

Tall ships: 1 Karie-L , 2 Tarua , 3 Calypso , 4 Long White Cloud , 5 Saskia . Line honours: Zindabar .

Classic invitational: 1 Nexus , 2 Pursuit II , 3 Vim , 4 Foucade , 5 Westerly I . Line honours: Caprice .

Junk rigs: 1 Shoestring , 2 Tystie , a few Gipsy Rose , 4 Zebedee , 5 Arcadian . Collection honours: Arcadian .

All-comers: 1 Eliminator , 2 Idle Time , 3 Simply Red , 4 Scout , 5 Innismara . Range honours: Innismara .

Typically the winners of the best wooden boat and best gaff-rig titles were not known upon race day due to a software glitch. Go to russellboatingclub. org. nz/results/tall_ships_2023. htm regarding full results; see northernadvocate. co. nz for many more photos.

Race officer Bruno Bomati gets ready to signal the noon start for the all-comers fleet. Photo / Peter de Graaf
Race officer Bruno Bomati gets ready to signal the midday start for the all-comers fleet. Photo / Chris de Graaf

Innismara (far right), a 67-foot sloop originally built in the 1960s, rockets to the front of the all-comers fleet. Photo / Peter de Graaf
Innismara (far right), a 67-foot sloop originally integrated the sixties, rockets to the front involving the all-comers fleet. Photo / Peter de Graaf

Cora, a gaff-rigged mullet boat built for the Hauraki Gulf in 1910, is flanked by junk rigs Zebedee and Shoestring. Photo / Peter de Graaf
Cora, a gaff-rigged mullet boat built for the Hauraki Gulf in 1910, is flanked by junk rigs Zebedee and Shoestring. Picture / Peter de Graaf

The waters off Russell are a sea of sails moments after the start. Photo / Peter de Graaf
The waters off Russell are a sea connected with sails moments after the particular start. Photo / Andrew d de Graaf

Nexus, the eventual winner of the classic division, prepares to pass a pair of junk rigs. Photo / Peter de Graaf
Nexus, typically the eventual winner of this classic division, prepares for you to pass a pair with junk rigs. Photo / Peter de Graaf

The junk schooner Zebedee catches the wind. Photo / Peter de Graaf
This junk schooner Zebedee catches the wind. Photo or Peter de Graaf

Vessels jockey for position at the start of the race. Photo / Peter de Graaf
Vessels jockey for position at the start of the race. Photo / Peter sobre Graaf

Rat Bag, a 43-foot gaff-rigged topsail schooner, has also sailed in oil drilling protest flotillas. Photo / Peter de Graaf
Rat Bag, some sort of 43-foot gaff-rigged topsail schooner, has also sailed inside oil drilling protest flotillas. Photo / Peter para Graaf

The kauri-built Partisan rounds Tapeka Pt near Russell. Photo / Peter de Graaf
The kauri-built Partisan rounds Tapeka Pt near Russell. Photo / Peter de Graaf

The Tall Ships race is more a fun day out with friends than a serious competition. Photo / Peter de Graaf
The Tall Ships race is more a fun day out having friends than a serious competition. Photo / Peter via Graaf

The gaff-rigged ketch Leto and Shantara are neck-and-neck off Tapeka Pt. Photo / Peter de Graaf
The gaff-rigged ketch Leto and Shantara are neck-and-neck off Tapeka Pt. Photo / Peter de Graaf

Arcadian, a Whangārei-based junk-rigged schooner, passes Tapeka on its way to claiming line honours in the junk division. Photo / Peter de Graaf
Arcadian, a Whangārei-based junk-rigged schooner, passes Tapeka on its way to help claiming line honours in the junk division. Photo and Peter de Graaf

The kauri-built Lidgard yacht Sarah-Jane. Photo / Peter de Graaf
Often the kauri-built Lidgard yacht Sarah-Jane. Photo / Peter sobre Graaf

Shoestring on its way to victory in the junk division. Photo / Peter de Graaf
Shoestring on its way to victory found in the junk division. Photograph / Peter de Graaf

A schooner stands out against the darkened sky of an approaching squall. Photo / Peter de Graaf
A schooner stands out against the darkened sky of an approaching squall. Photo as well as Peter de Graaf

The gaff schooner South Seas throws up spray as it rounds Tapeka Pt into open water. Photo / Peter de Graaf
Your gaff schooner South Seas throws up spray as it rounds Tapeka Pt into open water. Photo hcg diet plan Peter de Graaf

Detail of the Tall Ships trophy showing traditional scrimshaw on a whale’s tooth. Photo / Peter de Graaf
Detail of the Tall Ships trophy showing traditional scrimshaw on a whale’s tooth. Image / Peter de Graaf

Ōpua sailing stalwart Cees Romeyn, right, won the classic invitational division in his yacht Nexus, with daughter and crew member Anna Hagen-Romeyn and Russell Boating Club commodore Bruce Mitchinson. Photo / Peter de Graaf
Ōpua sailing stalwart Cees Romeyn, right, won often the classic invitational division in his yacht Nexus, by using daughter and crew member Anna Hagen-Romeyn and Russell Boating Club commodore Bruce Mitchinson. Photo / Philip de Graaf

The Murphy family of Whangārei celebrates winning line honours in the junk-rig division with the double-masted Arcadian. Photo / Peter de Graaf
The Murphy family of Whangārei celebrates winning line honours inside of the junk-rig division with the double-masted Arcadian. Photo / Peter de Graaf

The departed are never far away during hāngī preparations. Photo / Peter de Graaf
The exact departed are never far away during hāngī preparations. Photo / Peter para Graaf

The hāngī crew uncover the cooking pit. Photo / Peter de Graaf
The hāngī crew uncover the cooking pit. Photo / Peter via Graaf

The hāngī crew lift out the first rack of meal packs ready for the feast. Photo / Peter de Graaf
The hāngī team lift out the first rack of meal packs ready for the feast. Photo / Peter de Graaf

Twelve-year-old Hope Maioha helps serve one of New Zealand’s biggest hāngī to more than 700 hungry sailors. Photo / Peter de Graaf
Twelve-year-old Hope Maioha helps serve one for New Zealand’s biggest hāngī to more than 700 hungry sailors. Photo or Peter de Graaf

Local covers band Tangent provided the entertainment in the post-race marquee. Photo / Peter de Graaf
Local covers band Tangent provided the entertainment in your post-race marquee. Photo and Peter de Graaf

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