Talls ships trophies

The winner of the tall ships category in Saturday's Tall Ships and Classic Invitational race off Russell was a ketch called Saskia owned by Kerikeri couple Kim and Sally Taylor. In second place on handicap was Sina, a yawl owned by Whangārei's Noel Barrott, while third place went to an Auckland ketch named Se Swalker owned by musician/reviewer Nick Atkinson. The winner in the classic division was Nocturne, a sloop owned by Kent Thwaite of Russell, with second place awarded to Northerner, a sloop owned by Totara North's Mike Webster, and third to Colonist, a historic cutter owned by Gary Wilson of Russell. The Joe Cotton trophy for best wooden boat went to Nocturne while the Zeke Patterson trophy for best gaff-rigged vessel was won by Corona, a 1936 mullet boat from Auckland. Pango was named the best junk-rigged vessel.

Minor injuries in crash
A passenger suffered minor injuries in a single vehicle crash on Kerikeri's Redcliffs Rd. The incident occurred about 3.40pm yesterday near Kate's Riding School. Police, Kerikeri Fire Brigade and St John Ambulance responded. The car was extensively damaged but the driver was uninjured.

New Refining NZ boss

Naomi James has been appointed as the new chief executive of Refining NZ
Naomi James has been appointed as the new chief executive of Refining NZ

Refining NZ has hired Naomi James take over the reins of the country's only refinery after it was forced into a finding a replacement four months ago. James, who is currently executive vice president at Santos Ltd - Australia's second largest independent oil and gas producer, is expected to take up the chief executive role in April. She replaces Mike Fuge who handed in his notice after just 13 months in the job to take the top position at Contact Energy. Fuge officially departs in March. James holds a Bachelor of Laws and Legal Practice from Flinders University and a Master of Law and Management from the University of New South Wales

Council scholarships open
Potential recipients of four $3000 scholarships being offered by the Northland Regional Council have a month to get their applications in. The council's inaugural Tū i te ora Scholarship aims to support students studying or training that aligns with council's mission of "working together to create a healthy environment, strong economy and resilient communities". Eligibility criteria and application forms are available from www.nrc.govt.nz/scholarship. Applications need to be submitted by February 14.

Scrub fire
Two helicopters equipped with monsoon buckets were fighting a scrub fire on Jordan Rd west of Kaikohe about 4.30pm yesterday with a third on its way from Paihia. Ground crews from Kaikohe's urban and rural fire brigades were also at the scene. Further information, such as the scale of the fire or any threat to property, was not available at edition time.