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Seventeen year old Rangitoto College student Nick Egnot-Johnson and his sailing partner Jackson Keon have recently returned from the waters of Pwllheli, Wales having taken on the best in Britain and then the world in successive regattas.
The pair won the UK 29er class Nationals, beating 126 boats from 19 countries.
They then finished seventh at the 29er Word Championships held at the same venue, behind the leading trio of crews from Australia, Argentina and the USA, and this time against a field of 193 boats from 25 countries.
Rangitoto College year 12 Media Studies student Sinead Murphy caught up with Nick on dry land and asked him some questions about their trip, and has shared their chat with College Sport Media.
Where has your sport taken you overseas in recent months?
At the end of last year my sailing partner Jackson Keon and I travelled to Perth for the Australian Youth Nationals and we finished seventh. Recently, sailing has taken us to Pwllheli, Wales. We sailed for three weeks in two events – the United Kingdom Nationals and the World Championships.
Please tell us about these two regattas in Wales, did you exceed your expectations?
We went there to sail in both the United Kingdom Nationals and the Worlds 29er Open World Championships, both of which were held at the same place, in Pwllheli, Wales. We finished first in the United Kingdom Nationals and seventh at the Worlds. We were initially aiming for top 20 at both regattas so we were stoked with our performance at both events.
What are your goals for the future, what’s coming up for you and Jackson?
Our short-term goal is to qualify (October 2015 trials) to go to the Youth Worlds, which will be held in Malaysia over New Year’s 2015.
A long-term goal for me is to go to the Olympics in eight or twelve years’ time and to sail for New Zealand. To represent New Zealand in the 49er class, which is the bigger version of the 29er class (the one I sail at the moment).
Who are the elite sailors you look up to and follow?
I follow the New Zealand Olympic 49er sailors Peter Burling and Blair Tuke, who won silver at the 2012 London Olympics.
Who are the people who have helped you out and supported you to the level you’re at today?
My mum and dad have been a massive influence towards my sailing. They have given me so much support. They have helped by funding, supporting and giving me their time for my sport. The New Zealand 29er coach, Ian Neely, has also been great support for the New Zealand sailors.