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3 February 2010, 11:25 am
All Set For Start Of Racing At Singapore Airlines Sail Auckland
Tom Ashley at the Beijing Olympic Games
Tom Ashley, Beijing Olympic Games gold medallists, makes his return to windsurfing action in Auckland this week

Singapore Airlines Sail Auckland 2010
Auckland, New Zealand

New Zealand's Olympic class sailing elite are right now gathering at Kohimarama Yacht Club for ISAF Grade One Singapore Airlines Sail Auckland 2010.
So far 144 are entered with registration happening later today and racing set to start at midday Thursday. After four days of racing medallists will be decided late on Sunday, and with plenty of exciting match-ups, this year's regatta promises not to disappoint.

In the Men's RS:X fleet New Zealand's most recent Olympic sailing champion, Tom Ashley is back on the water, this his first regatta after only recently returning to an intensive training schedule after a well-deserved breather.

Ranked world #1 during 2006 and back in 2003, New Zealand's Jon-Paul Tobin will also be on the water for Singapore Airlines Sail Auckland. And young Dutch sailor Dorian Van Rijsselberge is in Auckland for the regatta, hot off a win in the Men's RS:X at last week's ISAF Sailing World Cup US event, US SAILING's Rolex Miami OCR.

Beijing Olympian Andrew Murdoch (NZL) recently won the Laser National Championship in Timaru, but not without stiff competition from a strong pool of talent in this Olympic Men's One Person Dinghy class. Michael Bullot (NZL) was extremely strong on the European circuit in 2009 and young up and comers like Napier's Sam Meech (NZL), gold medallist at the 2009 Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship, and Josh Junior (NZL) from Wellington are keeping the more experienced campaigners on their toes.

A small fleet of 49ers is expected, a spectacle missing from the line-up at Singapore Airlines Sail Auckland over recent years. Just back from a Miami where they won the North American 49er Championship, and placed eighth at the Rolex Miami OCR, Peter Burling and Blair Tuke (NZL) head the 49er line-up back on home turf this time.

Another exciting inclusion is the Paralympic 2.4mR class. Racing for the 2.4mR sailors will be based out of Westhaven Marina.

Images, news and results as they come to hand will be posted on the regatta website - www.sailauckland.org.nz.
Jodie Bakewell-White
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