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Bay Siblings Take to the Seas

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Bay Siblings Take to the Seas

Brother and sister sailors Sam and Molly Meech are representing New Zealand at the Olympics for the first time this year. Juliet Rowan speaks to the talented duo about growing up on a boat and in the Bay alongside the likes of yachting superstar Peter Burling and Tauranga's other Olympic sailing hopeful Jason Saunders.

For Sam and Molly Meech, the ocean is as familiar as dry land.

When Sam was 3 and Molly 18 months old, their parents abandoned their home on the ground for life on a boat.

It was an adventure that was to last a decade and gave the pair an affinity for the water that has seen them rise to the top of their sport in recent years.

"It definitely gave Sam and I the connection to the water," says Molly. "It was just always around us. It became natural, being that close to it. I think it was very strange when we moved ashore."

Sam sums it up even more simply: "When I'm on the water, I'm relaxed," he says.

Sam, 25, and Molly, 23, are part of a team of 12 sailors competing at this year's Rio Olympics, and among a group of four with ties to Tauranga. As well as Sam and Molly, the city is represented by Peter Burling and Jason Saunders, both of whom have previous Olympic experience, Burling winning silver at London in 2012.

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