Photography by Jeff Brown | BREED Media
It was the perfect weather for sailing as the 2021 Mastercard Superyacht Regatta came to a close on Saturday.
After four days of racing throughout the Hauraki Gulf, each vessel bustling against each other, it was the team aboard Tawera who won the Mastercard Superyacht Regatta trophy by a nine-point margin.
The four-day competition at the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron, which saw eight sailing yachts compete, closed with a single, final race: a 16.5 nautical mile course, set by Harold Bennett and his race management team. Mirroring the previous three days, Saturday was filled tight crosses, lead and sail changes as well as neck-to-neck battles right down to the finishing line.
Miss Silver and Sassafras pushed against each other to their limit for the entire day, Miss Silver holding a slim lead at the final mark, forcing Sassafras to tack away and split off in the opposite direction.
But the decision would prove to be the right call – Sassafras managing to sail the best line and pick the wind brilliantly, beating Miss Silver by a minute.
But in first place on Saturday was Silvertip, claiming the Barfoot & Thompson Day Four winners honours and their third win of the regatta.
“It was great, just a completely different atmosphere sailing here on the Hauraki Gulf with it’s incredible backdrop,” said Silvertip Captain, Tom Kinver.
“It’s been a long time since the boat has had any wins so it’s good to change that, hopefully we can now move forward from those wins and make something happen in the overall sense.”
Cementing their victory of the regatta was Tawera who came second on Saturday, the team never slipping outside the top two throughout the week.
“Unbelievable, given the climate we are operating under now, it shouldn’t have happened, but thanks to the Squadron, to get this regatta underway was just unbelievable,” said Tawera owner, Mike Mahoney.
“Everyone’s had a wonderful time, the races were fantastic, the courses were brilliant, and we are really happy to come out with a good result.”
Catalina captain, Sean Whitney, echoed the sentiment: “It was the best experience for us because we could engage with people, have fun, and get so much enjoyment out of being in a country like New Zealand, the sailing was fantastic, and we had a really enjoyable time.”