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Armit relishing battle with top Dutch foilers

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It’s been a while since Josh Armit had a taste of international competition – and battling it out with some of the world's leading windfoilers at the weekend has only served to further whet his appetite. 

Armit, New Zealand’s top male windfoiler, claimed an impressive second place at the class national championships at Manly Sailing Club, narrowly missing out on the top spot to world championship bronze medallist Huig-Jan Tak. 

The 21-year-old won two of 11 races and finished above other noticeable Dutch sailors - who are in the country for a training block - including Joost Vink, Max Castelein, and 2020 Olympic gold medallist windsurfer Kiran Badloe. 

Armit's last international action came at the iQFoil World Championships in Brest, France in October and while he was happy with his performance at Manly, he can’t wait for a rematch with the Dutch. 

“It was great to get some tight racing in against the international fleet– it’s been a while for us since lining up against any international competition. It was a shame we only managed to get two days of racing in, with not enough wind on day three,” Armit said. 

The Kiwi windfoiling contingent has spent the past few weeks training with the Dutch who have based themselves in New Zealand before the European season starts in earnest. 

Dutch sailor Huig-Jan Tak finished first overall in the elite men's fleet.

Dutch sailor Huig-Jan Tak finished first overall in the elite men's fleet. 

The visitors will also compete at this weekend’s Oceanbridge NZL Sailing Regatta off Torbay. 

“I’m pretty stoked to have an international fleet come to New Zealand to race and train here and I can’t wait for some more tight battles against them this weekend.” 

Veerle ten Have defended her national title in the 8m division for the second time, with a near-faultless nine wins from 11 races in the six-board fleet. 

“It was a fun event and a good place for me to work on my goals for the season,” she said. 

“I’m trying to beat myself at every regatta and there’s plenty for me to improve on at Oceanbridge.”

Results and standings from the 2023 Windfoil National Championships hosted by Manly Sailing Club:

iQ Elite Men Fleet (11 boards):

1st: Huig-Jan (Netherlands) 1 2 1 1 (8) 8 (12) 3 2 1 2 - 21 points

2nd: Josh Armit (Wakatere Boating Club) 5 (8) 3 2 1 5 2 2 (7) 2 1 - 23 pts

3rd: Joost Vink (Netherlands) (11) 1 4 5 3 2 (12 DNS) 1 3 3 3 - 25 pts

iQ 8 Metre (6 boards):

1st: Veerle Ten Have (Takapuna Yacht and Powerboat Club) 1 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 - 9 pts

2nd: Jack Parr (New Plymouth Yacht Club) 2 1 2 2 2 (3) 2 (7 BFD) 3 2 1 - 17 pts

3rd: Aimee Bright (Manly Sailing Club) 3 3 3 3 3 2 3 2 2 3 3 - 24 pts

Other results here.