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Sailing

Peter Burling and Blair Tuke have claimed their fifth World Championship Title in dramatic fashion in Auckland’s Waitemata Harbour.

Peter Burling slipped off the back of the boat and into the sea when tacking on the first upwind leg of the high-stakes medal race, plunging the New Zealand pair to the back of the fleet. They fought their way back to finish fourth in the top-10 shootout, only one place behind the German pair of Erik Heil and Thomas Ploessel, to win by six points overall.

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"It's definitely the top, no doubt," Tuke said when reflecting on a fifth world title. "We said going into it that racing a world champs on your home waters would be right up there with the Olympics. It feels pretty good.

"It always feels good when you do it in that fashion, when it comes down to the wire as well. We would have liked to have won by more but you take it any way you can. We're really proud that we came back in the end there."

"It was a bit annoying," an understated Burling said of his swim in the medal race. "It was the same thing we did in the first race when we snapped the tiller extension. It was really choppy out there and hard to get the timing quite right."

Logan Dunning Beck and Oscar Gunn also had their challenges on the final day, and also snapped their tiller extension in the morning session, but finished second in the medal race and fifth overall. Isaac McHardie and William McKenzie agonisingly missed out on the top 10 on countback.

Alex Maloney and Molly Meech expressed a similar sentiment after finishing sixth overall in the 49erFX. The Olympic silver medallists made up ground in the morning session after posting two third placings which left them only seven points off third but capsized on the final run of the medal race in the strong breeze and choppy conditions.

Burling and Tuke will have little time to relax over the Christmas period with the next 49er world championships just three months away. But the pair don't tend to sit still and will look to add to their list of achievements over the coming months - just maybe without so much drama.

 

Cycling

Cycling New Zealand has given their team a nine out of 10 for performances on their home track in the Tissot UCI Track World Cup in Cambridge.

The team won eight medals including five golds at the Avantidrome this week – the most victories by any team this week.

The Vantage New Zealand elite team were boosted on the final day by two omnium world champions who provided the highlight on the final day when Campbell Stewart and Aaron Gate combined to win the 50km Madison race.

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“The performances on the track have been good, but I’ve been very impressed with what’s happening off the track as well too,” said Cycling New Zealand High Performance Director, Martin Barras.

“As a programme we’re coming together. Process is what’s going to get us to where we want to be and we’re very much on track.”

Barras is particularly pleased with the results and depth in the endurance programmes.

The penultimate round of the Tissot UCI Track World Cup is in Brisbane starting on Friday.

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Rugby sevens

The Black Ferns Sevens have gone back-to-back in Dubai, claiming their second consecutive title at the desert tournament.

It’s the first time a women’s team has won back-to-back titles at the HSBC World Sevens tournament in Dubai. 

Gayle Broughton claimed victory for New Zealand, scoring with less than 20 seconds left on the clock, to defeat Canada 17-14 in the final.

The victory puts New Zealand at the top of the HSBC Standings after two tournaments. They are on equal points with USA, but points differential means they are leading.

Meanwhile in the men’s division the All Blacks Sevens had to settle for silver, going down 15-0 in the final against South Africa.

The series moves to Cape Town next weekend, with the pools to be announced shortly. It will be the first time and men and women will play alongside each other at the African tournament.  

 

 

Skiing

Alpine ski racer Piera Hudson (Havelock North) has finished on the podium for the third day running, this time winning the Far East Cup Giant Slalom and scoring a personal best result.

Piera’s impressive string of results began on Wednesday with a win in Slalom, followed by a third place in Slalom on Thursday. She carried her strong form with the change of discipline to Giant Slalom on Friday, once again finishing atop the podium.

“I’m really happy with my results at the Far East Cup series,” says Piera. “It was a huge personal best for me!”

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