New Zealand's Peter Burling took gold at the Australian Moth Championships in a competitive fleet at the Wangi RSL Sailing Club, north of Sydney in New South Wales, Australia.
Saturday was the final day of racing at the and as predicted, the weather was not good with high heats and a lack of wind.. Luckily, the race committee's decision to run four races on both Thursday and Friday meant that only one final race needed to be sailed. The 12 noon start was put back and put back as what little breeze there was came from the N, S, E and W until eventually a mild southerly change came in just before 15:00.
Even then, the breeze was swinging around considerably making it difficult to set a course. Just a couple of minutes before the race finally started, which was after 16:00, Burling and Scott Babbage crashed into each other, with Babbage breaking a wing bar and Burling receiving a nasty cut to his arm and resulting in both retiring.
This opened things up for others at the front of the fleet, with Andrew McDougall taking full advantage to chalk up a win in front of Tom Slingsby and Josh McKnight followed by Rob Gough and Joe Turner.
Despite retiring from the final race, Burling had done enough to take gold with Babbage coming second and as first Australian, he was crowned National Champion. Current World Champion Josh McKnight came third just ahead of Joe Turner, followed by Olympic gold medalist, Tom Slingsby with defending National Champion, Rob Gough from Tasmania finishing sixth overall.
Racing in the 15 race series staged over six days, Burling dominated the fleet winning no less than ten of those races. He only finished outside the top six in just one race and concluded the regatta 14 points clear of second place-getter Scott Babbage. Reigning world champion in the Moth McKnight finished third.
While not a World Championship Regatta the fleet in Wangi, which totalled nearly 70 boats, was entirely world class and included; Joshua McKnight (2012 Moth World Champion, AUS), Tom Slingsby (2012 Olympic Laser Champion, AUS), Nathan Outteridge (2012 Olympic 49er Champion helm, AUS) and Iain Jensen (2012 Olympic 49er Champion crew, AUS) to name a few.
The 2013 Moth World Championships are on in Hawaii in October.
For full results click here