Tim Wood: Kiwi experience pays off | Photo: Isaac Spedding

Tim Wood has stolen the Eastbourne Slalom Plus 2014, in New Zealand.

The event held by the Wellington Windsurfing Association (WWA) attracted sailors who competed on the PWA World Tour stage in New Caledonia, including Wood, Laurence Carey and Basti Kordel.

The anticipated matchup between these three did not occur, Carey was nursing a badly sprained ankle and under doctors orders did not race, but did an excellent job recording the race finishes.

As always, the event attracted over 20 sailors from as far away as Christchurch to Auckland and Tauranga, with Wellington's almost guaranteed wind, and Eastbourne's hospitality being hard to resist. Expectations were high given the 60 knots that started the event last year.

The event was aided this year by the recently installed wind meter funded by the community board and installed with the help of the local Eastbourne Fire Brigade.

The wind patterns showed that Wellington Harbour typically has less than 12 hours out of every three or four days when the wind drops below sailing speeds of 15-16 knots, ideal for events like this.

Eastbourne delivered the goods again, with 17-to-20 knot winds for both days ensuring a good number of races were completed. The clashes were over quickly, with two laps around a figure-of-8 course set across the harbour between the point at Robinson Bay and Makaro (Ward) Island.

Our foreign visitor dominated on day one, showing why his world ranking is currently 26th, but unfortunately he had to fly out the next day, so could not complete the event. The door was open for PWA veteran Tim Wood to take out the event.

The out-of-town sailors dominated, with Dave Steele - the best Wellington sailor in 2013 - showing the way to the locals again in the gold fleet. Local William Novak also did well in the silver fleet, sailing part of the time on wave sailing gear, the "weapon of choice" for many non-racing Wellingtonians.

Eastbourne Slalom Plus 2014 | Top 3

Gold Flee
1. Tim Wood (Auckland)
2. Harry Reed (Auckland)
3. Chris Dimock (Christchurch)

Silver Fleet
1. Alexander Stroh (Auckland)
2. William Novak (Wellington)
3. John Davies (Tauranga)