New Zealand, 2022 Rum Bucket
Wakatere BC, Auckland
29 & 30 January
By Ben Morrison
On 29 & 30 January, despite Omicron and Cindy’s traffic lights, the might OK fleet gathered (well, the Auckland contingent anyway) at Wakatere and held a simplified edition of the Rum Bucket. No paperwork, no going inside the clubhouse, just great courses, great weather, and great sailing.
Race 1 began in a glorious 15 knot NE breeze, and Ben Morrison led around the first mark, soon to be passed on the reaches by Andy Philips. The two then swapped the lead several times before Philips took a narrow win from Morrison, with Dan Slater in 3rd. Race 2 was a similar affair, Philips winning again from Eric Rone and Morrison. In Race 3, with the wind starting to ease and becoming increasingly shifty, Slater found the lead and hung onto it from Philips in 2nd and Rone in 3rd. Philips was not to be denied in Race 4, taking his third bullet of the day in a dominant victory from Morrison in 2nd and Gordon Sims in 3rd.
So, at the end of Day 1, with three wins and a 2nd, Philip had a stranglehold on the contest with just 5 points to his name.
Day 2 was somewhat lighter, another NE (tending E at times) of 6-8 knots with a strong incoming tide. Philips soon took control in Race 5, fighting his way to the lead on the first lap and never relinquishing it from there for yet another win. John Cutler started to find some form after a mixed first day, sailing well for 2nd, while Rod Davis took 3rd (after a solid 4, 4, 4, 6 on Day 1). Race 6 saw the fleet mixed up from previous races, with Rohan Lord putting together an excellent win from Rod Davis and John Cutler. And so, onto the final race of the contest, another cracker with a sea breeze coming in to bolster the prevailing (but light) NE breeze. Morrison finally got his act together and led from start to finish, while Rod Davis sailed yet another excellent race to take 2nd in the race and ease ahead of Morrison for 2nd overall, and Philips cruised to 3rd and a comfortable victory for the contest.
So, Andy “Lightning” Philips took the Rum Bucket for 2022, showing that despite a year or so away he is still a force to be reckoned with. Rod Davis had a breakthrough contest to take 2nd, while Morrison was 3rd.
Huge thanks to Simon Probert for organising the event, Dan Bush for running excellent races with minimal fuss as PRO, and everyone else who helped out. This regatta showed that great sailing contests can be held during Omicron and was a breath of fresh air for sailors who badly needed it.
|Place||Name||Sail No.||Race 1||Race 2||Race 3||Race 4||Race 5||Race 6||Race 7||Total||Net|
UFD, DNC, DNCF etc: 28pts