Murrays Bay has a proud history and enviable track record of producing performance sailors. This tradition is continuing. The clubs history is rich with names of sailors recognized through National and World Championships, Americas cup, and the Olympics. It is hard to quantify exactly why so many of our sailors do well. Clearly there is a tremendous amount of work put into training. It may also have something to do with the early training in excellent sailing waters found off the bay. We would like to think it is also a result of the friendly environment and companionship found at the club, and the hours of work that our members and volunteers contribute.

This collection of stories relates our heritage. If you have a story to contribute, please email

Carry on below for our story back to 2000


2017 - 50 Years of the 24 Hour Race

50 Years of Murrays Bay's 24 Hour Race celebrated in March 2017 at Lake Pupuke

2017 - Americas Cup

It's March 2017, and very soon ETNZ will be flying their catamaran to Bermuda to win the Americas Cup. With the many contacts the club has within Team New Zealand, including current sailing member Elise Beavis, it was easy to arrange a fly-by for our Optimist sailors. The crew on Brin Wilson that day reported it to be an incredible experience.

It was a repeat performance of this day in 2002 when former member Dean Barker brought NZL81 through the Sunday race fleet as they worked up to the 2003 Americas Cup defense.


2017 - First Ever Optimist Ranking Regatta

With the Clubs new space and the increased rigging areas on the reserve, it was now deemed possible to hold an Optimist ranking regatta. The old public toilets had been removed by now, and the area in front of the club (above) grassed over just in time. After months of planning by Amy Mulcahy and her team, Auckland Anniversary weekend, January 2017 saw a successful event. 163 Optimists and 63 Starlings. So far the event website still exists. The event was supported by Bayleys Real Estate and the Giltrap Group.

2016 - The Murrays Bay Alumni

Julian Beavis was the person behind the founding of the Murrays Bay Alumni, first general meeting 1st December 2016. Social and fundraising events is the aim, an early event being this Americas Cup talk held in the bunker in 2017. Click the picture above to visit the Alumni page.

2016 - Winter Champs

Stack Offcie Furniture was back again in 2016 as sponsor of the Winter Champs. Here Stack Managing Director and former MBSC Commodore David Gunn chats with founding MBSC member Harold Bennett. Now that he has retired from his Americas Cup race officer duties, he returns to the club each year to act as PRO for Winter Champs. 

The 2016 Rio Olympians signing posters at Win Champs registration, here led by MBSC member Alex Maloney. Sailing for MBSC, Alex won the Girls at the 2007 Optimist Worlds, went on to win the 420 Worlds, and then became MBSC's highest medalist with Silver in the FX Class. 

Gold 49er Medallist Blair Tuke being interviewed by Martin Tasker for TVNZ.


2016 - Prizegiving

After more than 50 years of the annual Prizegiving being held in the Outram Hall, May 2016 was the first year it was held in the new Clubhouse. Here's a glimpse of the long task of getting everyone in the right place before finally the chat will have to stop and eyes front....  . 

2016 - Old Faithful finally comes down

The old clubhouse comes down in March 2016


As the club came down, the latest version of the Murrays Bay wharf was under construction. The old wharf stairs had been blown on to the beach by north easterly storms several times, and the old concrete pillars had been deemed unsafe.



During the remainder of 2015, the footprint of the club was huge, with the new boat bunker complete and operational at right, the old Clubhouse, Waterwise shed and old yard being slowly  emptied of their contents, and the newly opened clubhouse and flagpole watching over it all. The old clubhouse is showing signs of the no-maintenance policy over recent times.
Taken during Stack Winter Champs, October 2015 (David Stanton)

2015 - Stunning New Clubhouse and Bunker Opens

Gary Hassall refurbished the old flagpole, and raised the flag for the first time 1/9/15

Mrs Smale, wife of Patron Mr Geoff Smale opens the new clubhouse, 27th September, 2015

People and companies made significant contributions both financial and product to the building of the new Clubhouse through 2014/2015.
They are recognised in the Club foyer.



2015 - All Change for the Burgee


The Club Burgee was changed in 2015, returning to the black and yellow of the original. The lettering is different though - the original had a single M (for Murrays Bay Boating Club). The new version spells it out.

2014 - Brin Wilson Refresh


Gary Hassall supervised a complete refit of Brin Wilson - she had reached the grand age of 32 Years.. Brin spent the winter of 2014 in Gary's factory while he and club members gave her a total overhaul. The yellow was retained, but there was a new floor, new seats, new electronics, new canopy, steering, and anchor winch, to ensure she gives many more years of service. The Club is indebted to funders and product sponsors: New Zealand Community Trust, Hall Spars, Hella Marine, The Lion Foundation, Maxwell and of course Gary and his team. She was relaunched 3rd October 2014.

2014 - August AGM - Progress on Bunker

In April 2014, the house swap transaction was done, where Auckland Council purchased the old clubhouse at 513 Beach Rd, and the Club purchased 511 Beach Rd. The Property Committee was led by immediate past Commodore David Gunn, and he reported to the August AGM:

Projected Budget for Boat Shed and Club House Refurbishment: $1.5million

Funds raised to date: 1.25million

As you will have seen we have a big muddy hole in the ground. Unfortunately due to the later than ideal start of the project we have had some weather delays. David Barnes is expecting to have the balance of the foundations, walls and boat shed slab completed by the end of September.

2012 - New Website

John Adair took on the Webmasters role in 2012 and in November launched a new club website. It enabled much faster distribution of news, photos and results, and featured weekly newsletters and letters from the Commodore. It operated until a new site with more flexible content management was introduced at the end of 2017.


2012 - Old Boys Come Back

One thing that keeps Murrays Bay great is the unwavering generosity of past members who continue to return to the club and contribute. Often, as in this example, sailors that learnt to sail at MBSC and rose through the ranks to become top international stars, will graciously come to prizegivings and share their experiences. The positive effect this has on the young sailors can not be underestimated.

This is the Stack 2012 P Class Tauranga Cup Prizegiving, January 2012, and Peter Montgomery is interviewing Dean Barker and Ray Davies, watched on by John Jennings, the club P Class aficionado. Ray is taking credit for the current state of the wiring in the Murrays Bay kitchen. (Photo: John Adair)

2008 - 50 Years Young!

The club turns 50.....more to come!


2003 - Jon Olds 

Presentation by Commodore Jane Pilkington on Oldsies 70th Birthday, February 2018

Oldsie came to the Murrays Bay Club from Timaru with his son Thomas back in 2003 and quickly became the go-to guy for repairing the wooden P Class and Starling boats who had misfortunes out on the water during the National Championships at Murrays Bay that year. To this day Oldsie or Jon Boy as he has become affectionately known, travels to many junior regattas around the country with his mobile trailer/workshop fixing the kids boats late into most nights to ensure any sailor has their best chance to complete their regatta. Oldsie does all of this voluntarily and the whole sailing community is indebted to him for not only the repairs he does for the kids but the vibrant after hours 'social' that takes place around his trailer each day of the regatta.
He was made a Life Member of MBSC, recognising his massive contribution to the building and maintaining of our club houses, and for his unstinting contribution to youth sailing.


2000 - The First Americas Cup Defense

The 1999-2000 season was to be a celebration of Yachting. Team New Zealand defended the Americas Cup in the waters off Murrays Bay and won. Never had the sight of so many boats watching yachts racing been seen just out from the headland. Fleets up to 3000 spectator boats stationed round the race track on the popular days.

Just up the coast at Waiake, Murrays Bay SC joined forces with four other Auckland clubs under the general control of the AYBA in running the Tanner and Tauranga Cups and the Starling Nationals and match racing. All preceded by an Optimist regatta. 17 days of dinghy racing.

During the Tauranga cup while racing was delayed through lack of wind Team NZ brought their black boats alongside the becalmed P class fleet and allowed the sailors on board. Old P class sailors like Craig Monk spotted their old boats and swapped. Children were hoisted to the masthead by fellow P class sailors. Since Louis Vuitton racing was postponed too, the Television cameras including those on the helicopter were focussed on the fleet for about half an hour beaming the pictures Worldwide.

The year 2000 was the year all the sailing world came to Auckland for New Zealand's first defense of the Americas Cup. It presented this unique opportunity to capture all but two of Murrays Bay's World and Olympic Champions in a single shot.