M Class goes back to the future for the lead up to the 100th season of continuous racing
The M-Class has been around for almost a century, in 1922 the class started with substantial prize money and to celebrate the milestone, the fleet is putting up a massive cash prize to encourage boats out of moth balls and onto the ramp at Royal Akarana Yacht Club in the seasons leading up to the 100th celebration.
$7,500 of the prize money is on offer and will be awarded to any boat that didn’t compete in the 2017/2018 season. The “Welcome Back” prize gives those boats who haven’t raced for a least a season, a chance to get back in the game. Last season points champ Menace along with Mach One, Matara, Masquerade and the 2018 Arch Logan Memorial champion Marksman are not eligible for the “Welcome Back” $7,500 cash prize.
An additional $2,500 is on offer for the overall winner on scratch points, which means if a “Welcome Back” boat wins, they stand to take home a whopping $10,000 in cold hard cash. That’s enough for a new set of sails, a boat overhaul or a family holiday!
The Class president Jon Andrews commented, “The regular boats out there are having a shed load of fun with good close racing, great class spirit and a lot of laughs; however no amount of cajoling, badgering and general harassment was getting the 15 or so boats that are able to be competitive out of their hibernation and onto the race course, so we have thought outside the box a little and come up with a plan to entice some more boats into joining the fun.”
“The class has some funds left from the last resurgence when 10 year sponsor Logan Clothing was on board, and together with some other passionate class supporters we have come up with a package to encourage boats over the next few seasons to target having at least 15 boats for our 100th. So the prize pool will double every season till the 100th.”
Of course, there are a few rules when a large sum of money is on the line, so to qualify, a boat must adhere to the following:
- Race at least three days of the 2018/2019 Akarana Series prior to 31st December 2018
- Race at least six days of the 2018/2019 Akarana Series from January 2019
- The skipper must be a current financial member of Royal Akarana Yacht Club and the M-Class Association
- All ramp fees and race entry fees must be paid for at the start of the season
- A minimum number of new boats will apply for the prize to be applicable
- Prize distribution is at the discretion of the M-Class Association
The prize money on offer is set to increase each year leading up to the 100th in January 2022, so now is your chance to get back in the Emmy for some hard core racing with a great bunch of people on the best harbour in the world.
The Royal Akarana Yacht Club is about to embark on exciting times with the opening of the Hyunda Marine Sports Centre just months away. The M-Class sailors will call the new club home, and will be a regular fixture at the new bar with expansive views over Okahu Bay and the Waitemata Harbour.
The 3,080m2 bespoke building is a first of its kind in New Zealand, being home to not only Royal Akarana Yacht Club and Auckland Sailing Club, but to other marine enthusiastic including Sailability Auckland, Ocean Blue Water Sports, Waka Ama New Zealand, University of Auckland and the Akarana Sailing Academy.
The M-Class sailing season kicks off on Sunday 30th September with the race of the Ffemmy against the Flying 15’s.
- Sunday 30th September
- Sunday 14th October
- Saturday 27th October
- Sunday 4th November
- Sunday 18th November
- Sunday 25th November
- Sunday 2nd December
- Sunday 16thDecember
- Sunday 13th January
- Sunday 10th February
- Sunday 24th February
- Sunday 3rd March
- Sunday 17th March
- Sunday 31st March
- Saturday 6th April – ARCH LOGAN MEMORIAL
- Sunday 14th April