Kiwi yachting app making waves overseas

An app which allows sailors, coaches and spectators alike to easily see results and jury decisions, or get live weather reports and notice of races. Photo: NZ Herald / supplied
An app which allows sailors, coaches and spectators alike to easily see results and jury decisions, or get live weather reports and notice of races. Photo: NZ Herald / supplied

A Kiwi yachting app that streamlines some of the more tedious aspects of the sport is attracting global attention.

The app was developed for last year's Youth Sailing World Championships in Auckland and allowed sailors, coaches and spectators alike to easily see results and jury decisions, and to get live weather reports and notice of races. Users could even order lunch and look up when their next bus was leaving.

"Normally people go to a notice board at the venue or someone posts it on Facebook. But with the app, everything everyone needed [at the youth worlds] was in one place," said the championship's director, Peter Dawson, who came up with the idea for the app.

Mr Dawson put it together with sports-focused app company the Sports Agency, on the back of Yachting New Zealand's members app.

Mr Dawson said it cut down on administration and eliminated the need for a public address system, which created a much nicer atmosphere.

Since being introduced to the sailing world, it has been used for five regattas in New Zealand, including the World Masters Games and Optimist National Championships.

Mr Dawson said it was likely the app would be used for the next two Youth Sailing World Championships in Sanya, China, in December and Corpus Christi in the United States in 2018.

A Yachting New Zealand spokesman said in the last week there had been queries about the app from sailing organisations in Australia, Ireland and the United States.

Mr Dawson said it typically costs between $30,000 and $50,000 to develop a new app but groups could adopt this and create their own unique look at a fraction of the cost.

"Rather than someone reinventing the wheel, we have done all the work so it will save time and money," he said. "It can also be a great income generator."

The Youth Sailing World Championships app was downloaded by more than 1500 people during the event and attracted over 79,000 views

Figures were not immediately available for downloads and views from other regattas.

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