Auckland on the Water Boat Show: Olympic gold medalist sailors visit

Olivia Powrie and Jo Aleh salute the Nothe crowd soon after winning the Gold Medal at Weymouth in August 2012.

New Zealand 470 sailors Olivia Powrie and Jo Aleh, who won the Gold Medal in the Womens 470 event at the London Olympics last month, will join the thousands of boating enthusiasts at this week’s Auckland On Water Boat Show.

Running from 27 to 30 September on and around Auckland’s Viaduct Harbour, the Auckland On Water Boat Show features a wide array of motor, sailing and recreational boats and equipment, including one of the 470 class yachts raced by Powrie and Aleh in recent months.

As the first New Zealand women to win a gold medal in a sailing category other than windsurfing and Barbara Kendall’s legendary successes, Aleh and Powrie have achieved a true milestone in Kiwi sporting history.

'It’s a huge honour to welcome Jo Aleh and Olivia Powrie, known as Polly, to the Auckland On Water Boat Show,' says the show’s manager Michelle Khan.

'The show is a celebration of all things boating and marine-oriented, so it’s fantastic to have this opportunity to meet Jo and Polly and show them just how proud we are of their success.'

Powrie and Aleh will be at the show from 1 to 3pm on Saturday and Sunday and show visitors are encouraged to bring their free show programme or Olympic memorabilia along for the gold medal-winning sailors to sign. A special display featuring video footage and images from their exciting Olympic campaign has been set up near the pair’s 470 yacht.

Powrie (24) and Aleh (26) have returned from the London Games and are presently based in Auckland fulfilling a post-Olympic calendar packed full with school visits, yacht club welcomes, junior regatta appearances and more. They are also taking the time to consider just what the next move in their sailing careers will be.

'Jo and Polly are terrific ambassadors for the sport of sailing,' says David Abercrombie, Yachting New Zealand chief executive. 'They’re both very enthusiastic about sharing their success with New Zealanders, showing off their medals and inspiring the next generation; the Auckland On Water Boat Show is a great opportunity for the boating public to come face to face with these two sailing stars.'

The Auckland On Water Boat Show features over 200 exhibitors featuring the latest motor boats, personal watercraft (aka jet skis), launches, fishing, marine safety and navigation equipment, diesel and outboard engines and much more. Stars of this year’s show are two of Sir Peter Blake's most famous yachts, Steinlager II and Lion New Zealand which are now owned by the New Zealand Sailing Trust and open for show visitors to go aboard throughout the four-day show.

The Auckland On Water Boat Show is open from 10 am to 6 pm Thursday through Saturday, and 10 am to 5 pm on Sunday. Tickets are available at the gate; an adult day pass is $20, buy a four day pass for $30, or enjoy an online discount with purchases from iTicket. See www.auckland-boatshow.com for further details or find Auckland On Water Boat Show on Facebook (www.facebook.com/OnWaterBoatShow).
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