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28 November 2004, 10:21 am
Ainslie Proves Tough
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New Zealand Match Racing Championship
Auckland

Ben AINSLIE surged to the front in yesterday's Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron Match Racing Championships, winning all six of his races in tough, blustery conditions.

Ainslie, the Briton who is Emirates Team New Zealand's strategist, and a teammate of skipper Dean BARKER, overtook his colleague after his perfect return gave him a total of 10 points, while Barker picked up four wins and two losses.

Barker has done a lot of match racing, while Ainslie - also the gold medallist in the Finn class at the Athens Olympics - is much less experienced. Barker won the race with Ainslie on Friday.

Barker's duel with former Team New Zealand afterguard member Bertrand PACE was the race of the day yesterday, with winds ranging between 22 and 26 knots. Intermittent heavy rain did not make life any easier.

Although Pace lost, his total of five wins put him level in second place with Barker, on nine points overall.

Chris DICKSON emulated Ainslie's six wins, two of which were against his younger brother, Scott, who he beat by 11 seconds and seven seconds in consecutive days, putting him in fourth place on seven points.

Adam MINOPRIO, whose crew are all aged under 19, proved a major handful in every race. He led against all six of his opponents but his lack of experience at this level eventually saw him overhauled.

Full results are available on the Royal New Zealand YAcht Squadron website at the address below.
NZ Herald (Courtesy Of Sail-World.com)
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