It's a typical Auckland spring morning. The sun is out, the humidity is rising, the water is sparkling.
The wind starts to pick up at the Royal Akarana Yacht Club, the flags flutter, just as sailors from around the world start to arrive.
There are no crowds, no glitter and glam, no towering AC75s. The only mention of coffee is from the local cafe — nothing about a certain type of espresso company. It's simple sailing. Just boats that aren't even 5m high, and shorts and jandles. It's where Peter Burling and Blair Tuke are in their most natural element.
"We really do love it," says Tuke.
The pair are less than 6km from their America's Cup base, where they have spent much of their recent time strategising and testing how Team New Zealand plans to successfully defend the Auld Mug in 2021.
But first they have Olympic gold to retain. The pair are looking to go back-to-back in the 49er boat in Tokyo next year. However, they are not yet guaranteed the spot.
With Burling and Tuke involved in the Ocean Race and America's Cup since their Rio triumph, Isaac McHardie and William McKenzie, and Logan Beck and Oscar Gunn have emerged as contenders in the class.
"It's amazing to see how many Kiwis are competing in the 49er. We're pretty lucky with the depth of local talent here. It just makes it so much easier with training, as we're all pushing each other. At the end of the day, we're all trying to win gold for New Zealand." says Burling.
Burling and Tuke conceded this week's Oceania Championships were about getting back into the groove of the 49er. While they competed in an Olympic test event at Enoshima in August, most of their recent time on the water has been spent on Te Aihe.
"We've been sailing a lot in the 49er, don't get me wrong. But it's different getting back into high-level racing. They're just little things, some real timing, decision making. We'll iron them out though," says Tuke.
'Chance to throw it around a bit more': Tuke on the new America's Cup boat
Competing on home waters is unfamiliar to the men who are now the faces of sailing in New Zealand. It's something they'll have to get used to ahead of the 2021 America's Cup. There's the luxury of not having to travel as much. But for now, they get to do it for two consecutive weeks.
The duo finished third at the Oceania Championships in Auckland, which served as the curtain-raiser to next week's 49er, 49erFX and Nacra 17 world championships.
"Olympic sailing has been seen as the most pure form of sailing," Tuke says. "All the equipment is the same, so when you've beaten someone in a race, you've done it because you've figured out how to make the boat go faster and have done better on the race track."
The challenge of switching their focus is one Tuke and Burling can now easily jump between.
"This [the 49er] is something we are really passionate about. We are also up against some of the best sailors in the world, so if you aren't focused on it, and we aren't doing all the things we know how to do well, we'll get shown up. The motivation is up there, don't worry about that," says Tuke.
Competing at home has more than just the advantage of not having to travel. The 2016 Rio sailing course had complicated winds and tidal flows, something Burling says won't be as much of an issue in Enoshima next year. The sailing conditions of the next two world championship venues (Auckland this week and Geelong in February) are similar to what they will face next year.
"We definitely know we have a target on our back, and we're probably putting the pressure on ourselves," Tuke says. "We want to do well, and this is the biggest event, other than the Olympics, in the 49er.
"But it's an amazing chance for us to show New Zealand what Olympic sailing is all about, and for us to test ourselves six months out."