CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand battle with Telefonica on the final leg. Alicante In Shore Race of the Volvo Ocean Race. Chris Cameron/ETNZ
Welcome to Sail-World.com's New Zealand newsletter for 30 October 2011
The Volvo Ocean race kicked off last night, NZT, with the Inport Race, at Alicante, Spain - from where the first leg will start in a week.
It was a mixed bag for most competitors - except the Ian Walker skippered Abu Dhabi which sprinted away to a flattering 14 minute win in the light and fluffy conditions.
For the rest of the fleet, they would have been keen to salvage some points from this raffle, which counts for 25% of the points available on a trans-oceanic leg.
While it is all very well to stage events for TV, and a Venue, it is expected that the Volvo Ocean race will be a very close run affair - maybe the outcome will be determined by the points earned in the Alicante lottery.
The fleet of Volvo Open 70's compete in the Iberdrola In-Port Race in Alicante. Paul Todd/Volvo Ocean Race
If organisers expect to have their events taken seriously, and not just as a form of exhibition sailing, then the racing has to be conducted under fair racing conditions.
Sorry but one competitor finishing 14 minutes ahead of the rest of the fleet in a stadium race, may be construed as good sailing skill by some, fortuitous boat positioning by others, or a crapshoot by many.
The Fields take Leg 1 - Global Ocean Race 2011-12 Global Ocean Race
The first Leg of the Global Ocean race is over, with the New Zealand father and son crew of Ross and Campbell Field taking the leg. we have some reports and images in this edition of Sail-World, and hope to have more next week.
Yachting New Zealand held its Annual Conference and Sailor of the Year function, we have coverage of both in this edition of Sail-World.com
While there was much discussion of the Affiliation Levy at the Annual General Meeting, probably the more serious issue was the creep or rather cancer of Aquaculture taking over cruising grounds. The spread of this disease is evident on charts of the Marlborough Sounds where the various mussel farms, and sea farms are shown. We have reproduced a couple of extracts from charts in this issue.
Grant Beck presents Peter Burling with the Young Sailor of the Year Trophy Richard Gladwell
While the cause would appear to have been lost in Marlborough, but other regions such as the Hauraki Gulf would be well advised to learn from the experience and wind up the objection level before the politicians and local body officials sign our heritage away.
The long term issue with the mussel farms is that if they prove to to uneconomic when the cost of repairs and maintenance outweighs their return, then they are abandoned - and the junk just sits on the sea bed, with some remnants on the surface. Either way a cruising ground is destroyed. Local authorities aren't interested in their removal. No bond is required to be posted for removal. The convenient option is to look the other way - except for the cruisers who get a life sentence.
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