Seventeen kiwi sailors are in Hyères, France to represent New Zealand at the 2012 Semaine Olympique Francaise Regatta for Olympic class sailors.
The Semaine Olympique Francaise, or simply Hyères as it is commonly known, is one of the major regattas in the International Olympic Sailing Circuit and is the fourth of seven regattas in the 2011-12 ISAF Sailing World Cup series.
Racing starts in France on Sunday April 22nd, and runs for six days with medal races and prize-giving planned for Friday April 27th.
This regatta follows on from the Princess Sofia World Cup Regatta in Palma de Majorca, where Dan Slater (Finn) and Hamish Pepper with Jim Turner (Star) both finished fifth just two weeks ago.
The NZL Sailing Team once again has a strong contingent sailing in the Laser class with 2011 Laser World bronze medallist and 2012 Olympic representative Andrew Murdoch leading an extremely talented group of young men. This event will be a warm up for the Laser World Championships which start on May 4th in Boltenhagen, Germany, and Laser Radial which are at the same venue starting May 15th.
After this event there is a short lead in to the 2012 World Championships for most crews; the Stars and 49er crews will stay in Hyères for their World Championships starting on 2nd and 4th May respectively. The Finn and 470 World Championships start two weeks after this Hyères World Cup event, in Falmouth, England and Barcelona, Spain. The Women’s Match Racing are the last to squeeze their World Championships in before London 2012, to be held June 25-30 in Gothenburg, Sweeden.
The 2012 RS:X World Championships have already been completed, and New Zealand’s JP Tobin finished on the podium with a bronze medal.
Neither of the NZL Sailing Team’s 470 crews will be attending the Hyères World Cup Regatta, both having just completed the 470 Spring Cup at the top of the charts. Paul Snow Hansen and Jason Saunders won the event with 14 points to spare in the 59 boat mixed fleet, while Jo Aleh and Olivia (Polly) Powrie were the top ranked female team and 11th overall.
Further updates on the NZL Sailing Team will be available via media releases and on the NZL Sailing Team’s Facebook Page, twitter @NZLSailingTeam and Website.
Full results and Hyères regatta news is available on the regatta website.
Representing New Zealand in Hyeres is...
Peter Burling and Blair Tuke
Josh Porebski / Marcus Hansen
Hamish Pepper and Jim Turner
Women’s Match Racing
Stephanie Hazard, Jenna Hansen, Susannah Pyatt
These sailors are supported by a coaching team of Jez Fanstone, Mark Howard, Phil Douglas and Caroline Brisebois
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