Matt Smeaton, Foreman

© North Sails NZMatt Smeaton is responsible for the daily running of the floor at North Sails in Auckland. He ensures that all sails are built accurately, and delivered to the boat on time, and also hires new Sailmakers.

Matt, who was taking part in the RNZYS Youth Training programme, was introduced to North Sails by Paul Murray in 1996. He traveled extensively with his new job, working on sail maintenance for the Volvo team Djuice Dragons in 2001-2002. “This was really good for me as I got to see what it was like at a top level out side the loft and to see how to build sails for a offshore sailing team,” he says. After the Volvo race in 2002 he moved to Oslo, Norway where he worked for the local North Sails operation, and joined Team Elanders as a trimmer for the Volvo Baltic Race, on a Volvo 60 yacht.

Following that Matt worked aboard the 140 foot yacht, Mari-Cha IV as sailmaker, helping to set a new Transatlantic record, and with the Open 60 Team Pindar, and as head sailmaker for Team ABN-AMRO, looking after two boats and over 100 sails for the two-year programme. Then he returned to New Zealand to work for North Sails in the service loft, a busy time with large amounts of superyacht work underway. He was appointed to loft foreman in January 2007.