We want the wind but not too much


Organisers pray it’ll be third time lucky for Saturday’s Donald Hay Classic yacht race between Kingston and Queenstown.
Last year, most of the 51 boats entered were left stranded in the middle of Lake Wakatipu when the wind disappeared halfway through – only a handful finished.
Yet in 2008, the event was called off because of strong winds. 

“Because of previous problems with the weather, we have decided to put a contingency plan in place with a finishing gate at Halfway Bay,” race spokesman Andrew Husheer says.
“That way if the wind does die, we’ll at least get a finish and hopefully everyone gets a result.
“We are keeping our fingers crossed for a nice southerly and if everyone gets to Queenstown Bay, then great.
“If not, and boats get stranded out in the lake between Halfway Bay and Queenstown Bay, then we’ll go back to taking the times at Halfway Bay.”
The regatta celebrates the voyage undertaken by explorer Donald Hay from Kingston to Queenstown on a raft 151 years ago.
About 60 competitors from the South Island are expected for this year’s event and Husheer expects previous Hay Classic winner Clive Manners-Wood to be the fastest Queenstowner.