On Saturday 7 June at 1300 hours NZST, a 20-strong sailing fleet will depart from the Orakei Wharf on Auckland’s Waitemata Harbour and race towards the finish at Port Denarau Marina on the West Coast of Fiji’s main island of Viti Levu.
This will be the 22nd race to the Fiji Islands for the club that is considered the home of blue water sailing. Organised and hosted by the Royal Akarana Yacht Club and Port Denarau Marina, ‘Sail Fiji’ is New Zealand’s premier ocean race – covering over 1,100 nautical miles.
ANZ Sail Fiji is a first for many of the competitors, including teenage brothers Nikolas (17) and James (15) Delegat. Nikolas will be experiencing blue water sailing for the first time on board their fathers Volvo 70 Giacomo to compete in the challenge.
15 of the boats will represent Royal clubs, namely the Royal Akarana Yacht Club and Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron and will compete for the Interclub Challenge – a trophy that hasn’t been contested for some time.
“2014 marks a new era in the Auckland to Fiji Yacht Race which has being organised by a professional and dedicated team. This is be a race run by yachties for yachties and Port Denarau Marina is once again very proud to be associated with the RAYC and Sail Fiji 2014” said Port Denarau Marina Managing Director – Mr Nigel Skeggs.
“We are continuously upgrading and enhancing our facilities and will once again welcome all entrants to a carnival atmosphere when they arrive in Denarau. We look forward to welcoming the skippers, crew and families to our island paradise. Happy sailing.”
The race is expected to take around four days if the southeast trade winds blow favourably. Line Honours will take place as the Monohull and Multihull boats finish, but the official Prize Giving event will be held on the evening of the 14th June.
Sail Fiji entrants will be fitted with the yellowbrick tracking system meaning that those at home can follow the race from start to finish! Followers will be able to watch the race unfold via the live tracker and through the official Sail Fiji website and Facebook page.
Don’t forget to show your support for the fleet by using #anzsailfiji.
To all the teams, we wish you fair winds and a great race! See you in Fiji…