Watersports in Nelson

Nelson Watersports is a team of passionate watersports specialist with a broad range of experience!

Tim Fraser-Harris Windsurfing InstructorDirector Tim Fraser-Harris has 20 years experience teaching or coaching at and managing watersports centres around the world. He is qualified under the Royal Yachting Association, Yachting New Zealand and Windsurfing New Zealand systems. Over the past 7 years he has been instrumental in the growth of sailing and windsurfing in the Nelson region. When the swell is up, he’s a keen SUP surfer.

When off the water, Tim keeps himself busy with mountain biking, orienteering, and getting stuck into renovation and landscaping projects at home! He loves the active Nelson lifestyle. During the winter months he can often be found up at Rainbow Ski Field or off in the surrounding backcountry!


Susanne BennellSusanne Fraser-Harris (nee Bennell) grew up sailing from a young age in North Wales. She competed as part of the Welsh and GBR Squads first in the Optimist and then the 420 Class including two World Championships. Whilst sailing with the 420 team, Suze also helped coach the Welsh Optimist Squad. She worked part-time for a number of seasons at Plas Menai, the National Watersports Centre in Wales.

Suze also windsurfs, kitesurfs, paddleboards and surfs when she gets the chance. She’s a real water baby! Away from the water she loves mountain biking, multisport, orienteering and generally keeping fit and active. She is a qualified physiotherapist and works at Sports Therapy on Collingwood Street in Nelson.


StephChief Instructor Steph Vining is a born and bred Nelsonian who grew up sailing at Nelson Yacht Club. She’s been instructing sailing at the club for nearly 10 years and knows the place inside out. She spent a couple of winters working in the UK at The Andrew Simpson Sailing Centre in Weymouth – the sailing venue for the 2012 London Olympics Steph sailed Optimists, Laser 4.7 and 420s (both Team Racing and Fleet Racing) and sportsboat racing.

Steph will be managing the day to day operations and will be your main point of contact in most instances!


Jamie Catchpole is back for a second season as our Head Coach, looking after the NBYTRA Team Racing programme and squeezing in coaching for 29ers, Starlings, and other classes. He is available for private coaching sessions by arrangment.

Jamie has been a massive part of the development of the local college team racing squads, culminating in some of the best results at the NZ Secondary Schools Team Racing Nationals for Nelson teams ever. He also travelled with two of the local teams who were selected to compete in the Interdominion Champsionships in Hobart, before heading home to the UK for Cowes week and some R&R.


Paul Goldsmith sailed 420s as part of the Welsh squad, taught Kitesurfing for many years with Kitesurf Nelson, and is currently looking to get back into windsurfing after many years! He’s an experienced instructor and coach and is looking forward to being involved this summer. He’s also going to be tasked with developing our equipment and clothing sales!


Nelson Watersports Limited also employs/contracts other suitably experienced instructors/coaches from time to time. We also look forward to training young windsurfers and sailors towards becoming qualified instructors.