Semi-Finalists decided on Day Three of the Nespresso Youth International Match Racing Cup
In what was an action packed day on the water in Auckland, four semi-finalists have been decided for Sundays final day of the Nespresso Youth International Match Racing Cup, supported by HARKEN.
The morning saw the remaining round robin racing completed, where Juliet Costanzo, Tom Picot, Oakley Marsh and Callum Radford secured their spots in the quarter finals – joining Nick Egnot-Johnson, Jordan Stevenson, Tom Grimes and James Wilson who had already locked in their spots the previous day.
Egnot-Johnson picked Costanzo, which like the rest of the quarters, unfolded to be a fairly one sided affair. Egnot-Johnson and his RNZYS Performance Programme Knots Racing team looked ominously good out there, sailing on to win the match up 3-0 – “It was actually a bit tricky out there today with a few wind shifts and a very strong tide. We felt good though, the boys are sailing with a nice degree of confidence and it’s showing with our results. Juliet put up a good fight but it feels great to be the top qualifier heading into the semi’s tomorrow.”
The next quarterfinal was quite the upset, with Callum Radford and his team from the Royal Port Nicholson Yacht Club knocking off James Wilsons RNZYS PP team 3-0. Radford went up 2-0 after dominating in the start box, leaving Wilson with his back against the wall needing to win a match to stay alive. However it got a bit worse for Wilson from there, and after falling behind again, he had a disastrous top mark rounding which ended up with him falling out the back of his Elliott 7 and into the water. Radford sailed on to book his semi-final spot – and he was pretty happy about it – “I’m proud of the team and how we sailed today. Coming up against James we knew we were in for a tough battle, but we kept our cool and it worked. They made a few mistakes which helped us out but I felt we had the upper hand for the majority of the races and we can’t wait for the semi-finals tomorrow.”
The next quarterfinal also ended 3-0, with Stevenson and his RNZYS Youth Training Programme team showing their class to dispatch Tom Picot from New Caledonia, who to be fair had been sailing well all regatta and still looked good in this match up, but was he no match for the speed of Stevenson – “They were a tough opponent for sure but we managed to get it done in three matches. Really looking forward to tomorrow, we’re sailing well and I think if we can continue that then we will be right in the mix to win on Sunday.”
The last quarterfinal also stuck to the script, with Tom Grimes and his slick CYCA Youth Academy team taking down the RNZYS team helmed by Oakley Marsh 3-0.
Egnot-Johnson is expected to pick Radford in the morning, leaving a mouth-watering matchup between Stevenson and Grimes in the other semi-final, but as we saw today, anything can happen in match racing so tomorrow is sure to be another superb day of match racing at the RNZYS.
By Andrew Delves – RNZYS PR & Communications Manager
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