Grand Prix Sailing

West Australians Yu and Nelson off to a flying start

 

 

21st Lexus Flying Fifteen World Championship at Napier, New Zealand

 

The 21st Lexus Flying Fifteen World Championship has attracted 57 competitors from New Zealand, Australia, Canada, Great Britain and Hong Kong for six days of racing in Hawkes Bay on the East coast of the North Island of New Zealand.

Day 1 of the championship started with very light airs and humid overcast skies, so the fleet were held ashore for a couple of hours in the hope that conditions would improve. By early afternoon a light Easterly breeze built to allow the PRO to bang off two races back to back.

Race 1 started with a general recall with a heavy presence at the committee boat end. The restart under U flag caught out a couple of competitors but it was the kiwis that emerged at the top mark in a huddle.

 

 

Local sailors Hayden Percy & Scott Pedersen from Napier SC, sailing their older (Silver) boat, took an early lead and hugged the right hand side of the course downwind whilst Craig Coulam & Adrienne Rekke from Royal Akarana YC in Auckland and Rob Ward & Bruce Yovich from Onerahi YC chose the left lane.

At the gate, the locals from Napier held their lead but on the next upwind were being pursued hard by David Yu & Chris Nelson from Royal Freshwater Bay YC in Perth and the British pair Greg Wells & Richard Rigg, representing Hayling Island SC & Royal Windermere YC.

As the wind continued to swing, the reach to the wing mark was lengthened and became broader, leaving a tighter reach to the downwind gate. Percy & Pedersen held their nerve to lead at the final gate rounding but the pressure was on for the final beat.

 

 

There was a loud cheer as the locals took the first gun of the championship from Matthew Owen & Andrew Reed from Canberra YC, who had themselves worked their way through the fleet to finish second. Yu & Nelson (AUS) overtook the Brits, Wells & Rigg for third and Nick & Janet Jerwood from South of Perth YC finished a solid 5th.

As the grey clouds gathered and skies darkened, race two commenced in similar conditions. This time David Yu & Chris Nelson got a great start, tucked in close to the committee boat and sailed in clear air up the middle right, whilst Steve Goacher & Tim Harper (Royal Windermere YC/Southport SC worked the left.

The Australians led down the run as the fleet split gybes with quite big separation. At the gate the breeze started to fade and become quite unstable but the Perth crew managed to keep a loose cover on their opponents. The second lap, a triangle, became quite a slog as the breeze struggled late in the afternoon. Aaron Goodmanson & Alister Rowlands (NZL) rom Charteris Bay YC moved up to second ahead of Jeremy Davy & Martin Huett (GBR) from Draycote Water SC.

 

 

The last beat was an agonising crawl to the finish line but Yu & Nelson managed to hold on to take the gun and the overall lead in the regatta. Nick & Janet Jerwood (AUS) worked their way through the fleet to finish 2nd and the kiwis Goodmanson & Rowlands 3rd. Owen & Reed (AUS) sailed a great final beat to finish 4th and Davy & Huett (GBR) 5th.

“Both races were hard work, especially the first one where we had to work our way out of a bit of trouble on the start line but we managed to make the right decisions and have a good day.  We learnt a lot of lessons from the NZ Nationals where we were extremely inconsistent and made a few bad decisions.”

“The last work in the last race when we were leading, we had a few anxious moments because the breeze started going back left and we were on the right hand side of the leading group, but we were fairly confident it would come back because it had been doing that all day, so it was a big relief when that right hand shift finally came.” explained David Yu

 

 

The Lexus Flying Fifteen World Championship has 7 races scheduled, running from Sunday 26 February to Friday 3 March.

Day 2 of racing has just one race planned with a start time of 1300hrs (local time).

 

Provisional Results (Top 6 of 57 entries, after 2 races)

1 AUS 3859 David Yu / Chris Nelson – 3,1 – 4pts

2 AUS 3684 Matthew Owen / Andrew Reed – 2,4 = 6pts

3 NZL 3091 Hayden Percy / Scott Pedersen – 1,6 = 7pts

4 AUS 3986 Nick Jerwood / Janet Jerwood – 5,2 – 7pts

5 GBR 3760 Jeremy Davy / Martin Huett – 9,5 = 14pts

6 GBR 4005 David McKee / Mal Hartland – 7,10 = 17pts

 

For full results and more information visit: www.napiersailingclub.org.nz

 

The 21st Flying Fifteen World Championship host club is Napier Sailing Club.

Major sponsors and supporters include: Lexus of Hawkes Bay, Napier City Council, The Food Company, Nelson Signs, Napier Port, GWR, Marineland, Ericksen Honda, Clearview Estate Winery

More photos are available via facebook site: https://www.facebook.com/FFW2017Napier/

 

by Jonny Fullerton, on behalf of the International Flying Fifteen Class

 

 

Warm up for the Flying Fifteen Worlds in Napier

 

 

 

 

2017 Flying Fifteen National Championship at Napier, New Zealand

Wednesday 20 – Friday 24 February, 2017

 

The 2017 Flying Fifteen National Championship acted as a prelude to the 21st Flying Fifteen World Championship, hosted by Napier Sailing Club on the waters of Hawkes Bay.

55 competitors from Australia, Canada, Great Britain and Hong Kong took on the kiwis in an early indication of form before the worlds to be held in Napier from Sunday 26 February – Friday 3 March.

Three very testing days of sailing in light and shifty conditions with a huge swell rolling into the bay causing havoc for race management and competitors.

 

 

Day 1 of racing was a soft introduction into things to come with a light 5 – 8 knot breeze from an E/NE direction, but the big swell made it very difficult for competitors to see the end of the start line, let alone the windward mark!. It also proved very testing in mark rounding’s, the gate zones and crosses on opposite tacks. There were a number of general recalls and inevitably the black flag became a menace.

However the team that coped best in the conditions were Ashley Smith and Adam Kingston from Queensland, Australia, who were sailing a Hong Kong registered boat. They picked up two bullets and a fifth to take an early lead.

 

 

 

Matthew Owen and Andrew Reed from Canberra YC (AUS) also sailed well in the light and shifty conditions to score a 4,1,6 to hold second after day 1.

Geoffrey and Tom Bayliss (GBR) from Hayling Island SC were the next best consistent top 10 boat with, (2,7 & 10) results. Top New Zealanders sat in 6th, Aaron Goodmanson and Alister Rowlands from Charteris Bay YC.

Day 2 of the championship delivered unseasonal rain showers and more unpredictable winds from the South East which provided another test for the sailors and race management alike as the fickle breeze swung either side of Bluff Hill, the hill overlooking Napier city and the port. This meant changes in direction up to 60 degrees! and lots of pressure patches.

 

 

Despite a lot more broken starts, two aborted races and more issues with the swell, two more races were finished under dark grey clouds. The British mob started to shine with previous Flying Fifteen World Champion, Charles Apthorp, sailing with Alan Green from Ireland, taking the first race of the day from start to finish from another former world champion team, Nick and Janet Jerwood from (SoPYC) in Western Australia. The Jerwoods counted two seconds to rise up the rankings into contention. The second race was won by Brits, Greg Wells and Richard Rigg from HISC/Royal Windermere YC just pipping the Jerwoods by a nose on the finish line.

Matthew Owen and Andrew Reed (AUS) kept up their consistent low scores as did Ashley Smith and Adam Kingston (HKG) and the kiwis from Christchurch, Aaron Goodmanson and Alister Rowlands.

 

 

After a long wait, the sun came out and the breeze finally shifted back to the East for the last day of racing to allow for a total of 7 races to be sailed. Locals from Napier breathed a sigh of relief as the final race started late afternoon in a more normal 10 – 12 knots in a slightly more regular spread out swell.

With the championship wide open and many of the top 20 boats carrying big double digit scores, it became really important to get off the start line in the first tier and able to get round the crowded top mark in good shape. It then became a case of the rich getting richer and the chasing pack struggling to get clear air and stay in contention.

 

 

Unfortunately for regatta leaders Ashely Smith & Adam Kingston (HKG), they got tangled up in two shocking starts and had to count a 36th and a BFG, dropping them down the pack. There were two new names taking race wins on the final day, race 6 was won by David Yu and Chris Nelson (AUS) from (RFBYC) in Perth and in race 7, the gun went to Jeremy Davy and Martin Huett from Draycote Water SC in the UK.

Whilst a number of the usual front runners also suffered bad results, Matthew Owen and Andrew Reed from Canberra and Aaron Goodmanson and Alister Rowlands (NZL) remained consistent to fight for the title in the last race.

Both got off to good starts at the pin end of the line but the New Zealanders got a bit buried in the pack at mark rounding’s, picking up a penalty but battled back to finish 12th. However the Australians Owen and Reed having recorded their worst result of the regatta (a discarded 12th), stayed focused in the final race to cross second and claim the Open title.

 

 

Goodmanson and Rowlands sailed a very good regatta series to finish second and in a high quality field and Charles Apthorp and Alan Green (GBR) closed out third overall with some consistent sailing on the final day.

Special mentions also went out to second placed New Zealanders, Hayden Percy and Scott Pedersen representing the host club Napier SC, they finished top Silver boat and 13th overall just in front of Murray Gilbert and Jonathan Burgess from Royal Akarana YC in Auckland. in 15th.

First of the Classics in a very respectable 39th overall was Nicholas Heath and Philippa Noon from Cam SC/Grafham Water SC in the UK. They frustrated a number of top fifteen worlds contenders with a 15th in the penultimate race.

Competitors have a rest day on Saturday with the 21st International Flying Fifteen World Championships beginning on Sunday 26 February – Friday 3 March, 2017.

 

 

Overall Results Open Fleet (top 10 of 55 entries, 7 races with 1 discard)

1 AUS 3684 Matthew Owen / Andrew Reed 4,1,6,6,5,(12),2 = 24pts

2 NZL 3739 Aaron Goodmanson / Alister Rowlands NZL 3,12,(17),3,4,4,12 = 38pts

3 GBR 4004 Charles Apthorp / Alan Green 5,10, (30), 1,12,8,4 = 40pts

4 GBR 4030 Greg Wells / Richard Rigg 8, (39),15,7,1,2,9 = 42pts

5 AUS 3986 Nick Jerwood / Janet Jerwood 6,16,8,2,2,(18),10 = 44pts

6 GBR 4005 David McKee / Mal Hartland 9,9,14,5,3,(22),5 = 45pts

7 GBR 3760 Jeremy Davy / Martin Huett (20),11,9,8,20,7,1 = 56pts

8 HKG 3972 Ashley Smith / Adam Kingston 1,5,1,4,10,36, (56/BFG = 57pts

9 GBR 4021 Steve Goacher / Tim Harper 12,6,16,16,9,(19),3 = 62pts

10 AUS 3743 Greg Tonnison / Andrew Jackson 11,13,2,13,23,5,(26) = 67pts

 

For full results and more information visit: www.napiersailingclub.org.nz

 

The 2017 Flying Fifteen New Zealand National Championship and the 21st Flying Fifteen World Championship host club is Napier Sailing Club.

Major sponsors and supporters include: Lexus of Hawkes Bay, Napier City Council, The Food Company, Nelson Signs, Napier Port, GWR, Marineland, EricksenHonda, Clearview Estate Winery

 

More photos are available via facebook

facebook site: https://www.facebook.com/FFW2017Napier/

 

by Jonny Fullerton, on behalf of the International Flying Fifteen Class

 

 

GC32 Racing Tour & Extreme Sailing Series foiling cats to face off

 

Alinghi blasts around the Muscat race track in 2016 © Lloyd Images

The first ever GC32 Championship for the combined fleets from the GC32 Racing Tour and Extreme Sailing Series™ will begin in Muscat, Oman. The ultra high-speed foiling one design GC32 catamarans will be competing at the GC32 Championship from Tuesday 28th February until Sunday 5th March. Racing will take place off Al Mouj Marina (The Wave, Muscat), on the outskirts of Muscat where the event’s host, Oman Sail, has its headquarters.

Run by the GC32 International Class Association in association with OC Sport, the 2017 GC32 Championship is the first of what, will be an annual event.

A team greatly anticipating this first joint venture between the two GC32 circuits is Ernesto Bertarelli’s Alinghi, which has previous experience of both: The former America’s Cup defender won the 2016 Extreme Sailing Series and competed on the GC32 Racing Tour in 2015. Bertarelli, who has been campaigning racing multihulls since the early 1990s, has confirmed that he will helm for the GC32 Championship.

Alinghi’s coach Pierre-Yves Jorand said: “We have been very much in favour of having a common championship with as many boats as possible involved. We are very excited and looking forward to competing with a lot of boats – it will be great fun and good competition. Having that many boats on the start line will be tough.”

Alinghi has competed in Muscat on many occasions and Jorand says the venue is perfect for racing during the northern hemisphere winter. “There’s usually a good sea breeze – 10-12 knots, sometimes building to 15 with a little chop and pleasant conditions in terms of water and air temperatures.”

While Alinghi will sail with its usual line-up, co-skippers Jes Gram-Hansen and Rasmus Køstner have some new crew joining them on board SAP Extreme Sailing Team this season. Both competed on the GC32 Racing Tour last year: British sailor Richard Mason sailed on Malizia-Yacht Club de Monaco while former Match Racing World Champion and Volvo Ocean Race sailor, Adam Minoprio from New Zealand, was instrumental to Norauto’s overall victory.

Jes Gram-Hansen commented: “SAP Extreme Sailing Team is looking forward to participate in the first GC32 Championship. It will be interesting to see how the teams from the two GC32 circuits will compare. We will use the Championship as a final preparation for Adam and Richard to gel with the rest of the team before heading into Act 1 of the Extreme Sailing Series, also in Muscat.”

Travelling furthest to compete at the GC32 Championship will be Team Argo of American Jason Carroll. Argo is a two time World Champion in the Melges 32 class and first joined the GC32 Racing Tour in 2015. Last season they concluded the GC32 Racing Tour on a high, finishing second at the final event, Marseille One Design.

With Ernesto Bertarelli helming Alinghi, Carroll will face some stiff competition to win the GC32 Championship’s Owner-Driver trophy. He commented:

“Team Argo is looking forward to new competition from the Extreme Sailing Series as well as the chance to square off with our old friends from the GC32 Racing Tour. The upcoming championship will be our first trip to Oman, which certainly adds to the excitement. We expect this will be the toughest event to date. We can’t wait for racing to begin!”

Two other GC32 Racing Tour teams making their Oman racing debuts will be 2016 runner-up Team Tilt and Team Engie. Led by Sébastien Schneiter, Team Tilt is gearing up to represent Switzerland in this summer’s Red Bull Youth America’s Cup in Bermuda and for the GC32 Championship will be rotating through a squad of seven under 24-year-olds.

Schneiter said: “We are looking forward to going to Oman and to sail for the first time with the two circuits together. It will be interesting! We are excited finally to do our first regatta on foiling boats with our Red Bull Youth America’s Cup crew after so much training at the end of last year. We hope to have good conditions there to learn as much as we can as we enter our final phase of training.”

French former Class 40 champion, Sébastien Rogues, will be sailing with his same crew as he had on Team Engie at the end of 2016.

“We have a very good spirit and we want to capitalise on that and progress with this team,” said Rogues who is looking forward to lining up against the Extreme Sailing Series boats for the first time. Rogues says they are expecting the conditions at the GC32 Championship to be relatively light, although they expect anything. “We are ready for the battle. The large fleet will make it a difficult race, but we have prepared for that.”

Another skipper with previous experience of both GC32 circuits is Oman Air’s newly announced man on the helm, Phil Robertson. Last year, the New Zealander skippered Gazprom Team Russia at the Extreme Sailing Series St Petersburg Act and subsequently steered Flavio Marazzi’s Armin Strom Sailing Team to second place on the GC32 Racing Tour at Copa del Rey Mapfre in Palma. However Robertson’s most notable achievement was claiming the US$ 1 million first prize for winning the World Match Racing Championship title last summer.

Oman Air comes with one of the most successful GC32 crews. Pete Greenhalgh, Nasser Al Mashari and Ed Smyth all sailed on Sultanate of Oman, which won the GC32 Racing Tour in 2015.
Phil Robertson commented:

“I have always thought it is a very, very cool concept to have all the boats racing on one start line, the two different fleets and anyone else that wants to from around the world who’s got a boat. So I am excited to hit the start line with so many foiling catamarans.”

 

 

by GC32 Racing Tour

 

 

Record Fleet for 2017 Moth Worlds

 

 

With 6 months remaining, the 2017 Moth Worlds has already attracted a record number of entrants. Earlybird entries closed on Tuesday with 190 competitors from 25 countries registered for the event to be held at the Fraglia vela Malcesine on Lake Garda in late July.

The record lineup features a daunting who’s who of top sailors.

At the top of the list is the Olympic Laser shoot out, with reigning Moth World Champion, 2008 Gold Medallist and Artemis Racing helmsman Paul Goodison (GBR) going up against 2012 Gold Medallist and Oracle Team USA tactician Tom Slingsby (AUS) and 2016 Gold Medallist Tom Burton (AUS).

2016 Laser Radial Olympic Silver Medallist and 2014 Women’s Moth World Champion Annalise Murphy (IRL) leads the charge in the growing women’s fleet against reigning champion Wakako Tabata (JPN) and 2013 Women’s Champion Emma Gravare (SWE).

 

 

 

Among the past champions, 2009 & 2013 Moth World Champion Bora Gulari (USA) makes a comeback to the class after taking time out to compete in the Nacra 17 at the Rio Olympics. Also making a return after Olympic and Americas Cup commitments, dual medallist Iain Jensen (AUS) will be looking to improve on his top 10 result in 2015.

Despite, or perhaps due to the venue, over 30 Australian entrants will make the journey, lining up against a large British contingent. New Moth countries Argentina, Ireland and Finland are well represented, alongside competitors from growing fleets in Poland, Greece, Croatia, Slovenia, Norway, Canada and Bermuda.

Taking it to the Olympians will be the Moth regulars including 2012 World Champion and current Australian Champion Josh McKnight (AUS). McKnight will debut a new Australian built Moth for the event against the dominant Mach2 and Exocet designs. Also pushing the development envelope is 2015 and 2016 Amlin International and Volvo Ocean Racer Rob Greenhalgh (GBR), who will surely be among the favourites based on recent form. 2016 European Champion Mike Lennon (GBR) will also debut a new design, the Lennon PP Moth designed by David Hollom and built by White Formula in the UK. Not short of innovative ideas, winner of the 2013 Mini Transat Benoit Marie (FRA) returns with a new boat for the event.

 

 

Alongside Marie is a large European contingent, with 3 time Moth European Champion Arnaud Psarofagis (SUI) taking a break from his responsibilities as helmsman on the Alinghi Extreme Series GC32 to return to the Moth. Not to be taken lightly, the local Italian fleet will be out in force, lead by 3 time Olympian and Artemis Racing helmsman Francesco Bruni (ITA).

6 months is still a long time in a Moth, but with entry numbers rapidly approaching 200, anticipation will be building for what will be the largest Moth World Championship ever.

Follow the event progress at www.mothworlds.org/malcesine or find MothWorlds on FaceBook & Twitter.

 

 

The Jerwoods finish in style

 

 

2017 Gemmill Homes Flying Fifteen 55th Australian National 

Championship at Esperance Bay Yacht Club, WA 

 

 

The heat arrived in Esperance with light to moderate breeze for one final race to decide the gongs at the 2017 Gemmill Homes Australian Flying Fifteen Championship.

An early start and a windward/leeward course was set for the final showdown. The breeze fluctuated between 8 – 14 knots from N/NE with plenty of pressure puffs coming off the white sand dunes in Esperance Bay.

The start was slightly relaxed but Philippa Packer & Dean McAullay (Absolutely Ffabulous) drove off the line close to the committee boat end to get an early edge, however it was the boats at the pin who worked the left (inshore) side of the course that crossed in front for the first top mark turn.

No surprise as champions elect, Nick & Janet Jerwood (Ineffable) had their bows in front of another SoPYC boat, Greg Tonnision & Mark Lovelady (Spot the Difference). Alan Bax & Simon Childs (Fforever Young) led a bunch of the usual suspects in pursuit.

Tonnison & Lovelady stuck to the Jerwoods like glue to reduce the lead at the gate to a single boat length. Places were shuffling in the top ten as a number of small pressure puffs wafted down the course.

Tonnison & Lovelady attached the Jerwoods up the beat crossing tacks until they got the edge picking up a pressure shift to tack across their bows. At the top they managed to open out a 6 boat length lead on the Jerwoods. Ashley Smith & Adam Kingston from Sandgate YC in Queensland sailed well to move up to 3rd and local EBYC sailor David Swan (Swanny) & Matt Elliot with the bit between the teeth in (Phar Lap) 4th.

Down the second run the Jerwood machine closed the gap to 1 boat length at the gate and spectators expected the inevitable. However the other SoPYC pair, Tonnison & Lovelady were not going to let them have all the glory and the next upwind leg was an absorbing tacking dual with the lead changing hands several times.

Third and final time round the top mark and the Jerwoods had managed to snick in front once again. Swanny rode Phar Lap into third with the Queenslanders chasing.

The final gate rounding saw the battle close up again between the lead pair and more changes in the 3 – 8 positions. The final upwind leg was another absorbing encounter with the lead again swapping. Just when we thought the Jerwoods would add another bullet to their collection, Tonnison & Lovelady got the better of them in the closing stages to take the gun and move another place up the leaderboard in the process.

The British Flying Fifteen sailors Alan Bax & Simon Childs (HISC UK) crossed in 9th but discarded this result to maintain 2nd overall in the Open category. John Wilson & Matt Summers (Ffast Lane 4) finished 8th to just hold on to 3rd overall by a point from the rapidly improving David Yu & Chris Nelson (Tuffan Up) first boat from (RFBYC).

Ashley Smith & Adam Kingston (Ffast Lane) (QLD) finished their regatta with a 4th to squeeze into the top 10. David Swan & Matt Elliot (EFBC) sailed a solid regatta to finish 9th overall and first local boat.

 

 

Philippa Packer sailing with Dean McAullay (RFBYC) sailed a good regatta finishing 6th overall as first female skipper and 6 places in front of her husband Ron Packer back in 12th.

87 year old veteran Bill Shand from Victoria sailing with David Parish finished all races to finish 24th overall, not too shabby!

Karen & Russell Dawes (Eagle Eye) from SoPYC picked up the trophy for first Silver boat. (Age of boat! not colour!)

So Nick & Janet Jerwood from SoPYC win their 3rd Australian National Championship title to add to their world championship and UK National winners medals. They serve notice to the visitors travelling to the Flying Fifteen World Championships in Napier, New Zealand in February.

The regatta will be remembered for sublime sailing conditions, blue skies, turquoise waters, strong breezes, waves (err ripples in Esperance) and a social programme you would want to emigrate to WA for!

 

Provisional Standings after 8 races with 2 discards (top 6 of 41 boats)

1 AUS3986 Ineffable Nick – Jerwood / Janet Jerwood (SoPYC) 7pts

2 GBR4047 Fforever Young – Alan Bax / Simon Childs (HISC UK) 16pts

3 AUS3989 Ffast Lane 4 – John Wilson / Matthew Summers (SoPYC) 21pts

4 AUS3859 Tuffan Up – David Yu / Chris Nelson (RFBYC) 22pts

5 AUS3743 Spot the Difference – Greg Tonnison / Mark Lovelady (SoPYC) 27pts

6 AUS3775 Absolutely Ffabulous – Philippa Packer / Dean McAullay (RFBYC) 34pts

 

For full results see: http://www.sportspage.com.au

Follow Esperance – Results – Flying Fifteen Australian Champs tabs

EBYC: www.ebyc.com.au and Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/Esperance-Bay-Yacht-Club-466293600198643/

FFIWA www.ffiwa.com and the Facebook site: www.facebook.com/FFIWA

The organising authority of the 2017 Gemmill Homes Flying Fifteen 55th Australian National Championship is Esperance Bay Yacht Club (Inc), in conjunction with Flying Fifteen International Australia (Inc).

Sponsors include Gemmill Homes, Westpac Agribusiness, Cliffs, South Coast Insurance Brokers, Southern Ports Authority, Brahma, Ferngrove and Southeast Petroleum.

by Jonny Fullerton of Grand Prix Sailing

 

Wish you were here!

 

 

2017 Gemmill Homes Flying Fifteen 55th Australian National 

Championship at Esperance Bay Yacht Club, WA 

 

 

Just another day in sailing paradise as 40 Flying Fifteens took part in day 3 of the Gemmill Homes Flying Fifteen Australian Championship in Esperance. Clear blue skies, warm temperatures and a superb day of steady breezes ranging from 15 – 20 knots and a 1m swell. Three more races using a variation of courses made for an exhausting but thoroughly enjoyable days racing.

Race 5 of the championship was called a general recall so a quick fix on the pin and away we went again. Clean this time with most of the fleet favouring the left hand side of the course. John Wilson & Matt Summers (Ffast Lane 4) pop the dayglow yellow kite in the lead followed by (Glamour Buoys) Greg Leaversuch & Peter Barblett and the familiar blue kite of Nick & Janet Jerwood (Ineffable) with another (Ffast Lane) Ashley Smith & Adam Kingston from Queensland in the mix.

On lap 2 these four boats arrive at the leeward gate in a row and two go left and two go right. The three leaders remain the same but Alan Bax & Simon Childs (Fforever Young) are rising through the ranks to challenge.

 

 

On the final triangle Wilson & Summers have around a 100m lead but its never enough with the Jerwood’s in pursuit. Around the final wing mark and a fast reach to the finish. Wilson goes high to protect height whilst the Jerwood’s sail fast and low, surging past to take the gun. Wilson & Summers settle for 2nd and a slightly fluffed gybe by the Glamour Buoys leaves the door open for Baxxy to slip past to snatch 3rd. The chasing pack became a private battle between the Royal Freshwater Bay YC boats finishing 4th – 7th.

Same glamour conditions for race 6 and another clean start. This time the Brits lead round lap 1 chased by the hungry, ex Brits (now Aussies), the Jerwood’s. The ever consistent Wilson / Summers combo from SoPYC fight for 3rd with the RFBYC pack. Although there were changes in the minor placings, the race was on to see if Bax & Childs could hold off the charging Jerwood’s. On every hoist and every gybe they seem to be just a bit slicker than the rest of the fleet so the pressure was on in every manoeuvre. On the final gybe at the wing mark, spectators expected the usual scenario but the multi championship winners from Hayling Island in the UK, used all their experience and skills to hold off the charge to finish the job and claim their first bullet of the regatta. Jerwood’s second and Wilson / Summers 3rd. Yu & Nelson (Tuffan Up) finish 4th and Chris Paterson & Ed Repsevicius (Storyteller) and excellent 5th.

The breeze was gradually getting a bit stronger with some big gusts but a third race of the day was irresistible so a weary fleet lined up one more time. There were a few left shifts this time necessitating a bit of shuffling of course marks and a slightly longer course with an upwind finish.

A cracking start at the pin by the Queenslanders Smith & Kingston and the fleet working the offshore (left) side of the course. Rounding first was the in form Brits Bax & Childs with Greg Tonnison & Mark Lovelady (Spot the Difference) on their stern and the Jerwoods breathing down their necks.

With their slick boat handling and turbo downwind speed the unstoppable Jerwoods surfed past into the lead. Tonnison & Lovelady also slip streaming past the Brits on the triangle. The last upwind work to the finish the mighty Jerwood machine extended away to take the gun and have one hand on the title. Tonnison & Lovelady just held off Bax & Childs and Philippa Packer & Dean McAullay recovered with a late surge to take 4th.

 

 

Nick & Janet sum up their day

“We were pushed very hard in all the races, its very tight, there is very little difference in all the boats, they have all been around for a while so everyone knows the settings to make them go fast so there are very small differences. Its just about how hard you work and where you position the boat on the course. Can you get off the start line and stay clear?.”

“You would struggle to wish for something better than we got today, it was great sailing, a good fleet, good courses, a full range of wind conditions, excellent competition on the race course. Even after the finish when you turn round to come back to shore you have a spinnaker reach to die for, you don’t get sailing like that anywhere its perfect!”

 

Special mention goes out to Bill Shand and his crew David Parish from Gippsland Lakes in Victoria. Bill is an 87 year old veteran of Flying Fifteen sailing and has finished every race and currently sits mid table in the championship. He builds all his own boats and trails them across the Nullarbor to compete in WA. He is a legend.

Contrasting in ages, the youngest competitors JJ Wallace (18yrs) and Sam Gardner (21yrs) from Esperance Bay YC had finished all their races but were not so fortunate today. JJ was rammed by his dad John, taking both boats out of contention and no doubt causing a family row at the dining room table over a large repair bill!

The final race of the championship takes place on Thursday morning when a slightly alarming forecast for air temperatures of 40 – 45 degrees and a wind forecast from nothing to everything and the kitchen sink! So an early start time of 1000 hrs (local) is scheduled before the fleet melts under the Western Australian sun.

Nick and Janet Jerwood for SoPYC have sailed an impeccable regatta but the remaining podium places are undecided as a second discard comes into play after 8 races are sailed so all to play for on the final day.

 

Provisional Standings after 7 races with 1 discard (top 6 of 40 boats)

1 AUS3986 Ineffable Nick – Jerwood / Janet Jerwood (SoPYC) 7pts

2 GBR4047 Fforever Young – Alan Bax / Simon Childs (HISC UK) 16pts

3 AUS3989 Ffast Lane 4 – John Wilson / Matthew Summers (SoPYC) 21pts

4 AUS3859 Tuffan Up – David Yu / Chris Nelson (RFBYC) 24pts

5 AUS3775 Absolutely Ffabulous – Philippa Packer / Dean McAullay (RFBYC) 34pts

6 AUS3743 Spot the Difference – Greg Tonnison / Mark Lovelady (SoPYC) 35pts

 

For full results see: http://sportspage.com.au/yacht_clubs/ebyc/ffnats/Flying_Fifteen_Championship.htm

There is a full schedule of social events for friends and families. More details are available from: www.ebyc.com.au and www.ffiwa.com and the Facebook site: www.facebook.com/FFIWA

The organising authority of the 2017 Gemmill Homes Flying Fifteen 55th Australian National Championship is Esperance Bay Yacht Club (Inc), in conjunction with Flying Fifteen International Australia (Inc).

Sponsors include Gemmill Homes, Westpac Agribusiness, Cliffs, South Coast Insurance Brokers, Southern Ports Authority, Brahma, Ferngrove and Southeast Petroleum.

by Jonny Fullerton of Grand Prix Sailing

 

 

A masterclass by the Jerwood’s but a new race winner 

 

 

2017 Gemmill Homes Flying Fifteen 55th Australian National 

Championship at Esperance Bay Yacht Club, WA 

Day 2 of the 2017 Gemmill Homes Flying Fifteen Australian Championships and Esperance delivered a superb warm day with cloudless skies and a very agreeable breeze ranging from 10 – 15 knots all afternoon to allow for three races to bring the regatta back on schedule.

PRO John Taylor (JT) set a short course using a new combination of sausage, sausage and triangle to finish on a fast reach. The familiar site of the blue kite of Nick & Janet Jerwood (Ineffable) popped up for the first downwind with another blue kite just behind. This time it was Greg Tonnison & Mark Lovelady (Spot the Difference) who were the chasers with another new face in the front pack, Ashley Smith & Adam Kingston (Ffast Lane) from Queensland.

On lap 3, the final triangle, the chance of an upset was on the cards, Tonnison & Lovelady snatched the lead but sure enough by the final reach the Jerwoods superior downwind speed wore them down and the SoPYC team took bullet number two of the championship. Tonnison & Lovelady settled for 2nd and John Wilson & Matt Summers (Ffast Lane 4) a solid 3rd. David Yu & Chris Nelson from RFBYC broke the SoPYC stranglehold with a creditable 4th.

Race 3 and second of the day shortly followed in similar conditions sailing the same course. The breeze did start swinging right causing a few worries for the PRO but held in strength. The Jerwoods rounded lap 1 in the lead but with a new challenger to hunt them in Greg Leaversuch & Peter Barblett (Glamour Buoys) and another new player Chris Paterson & Ed Repsevicius (Storyteller).

As per usual, places 3 – 6 saw a number of changes but Nick & Janet Jerwood were serving up a masterclass extending on every leg to take a third bullet. The bad boys, Levo & Barblett held on to second in a hope that their turbulent regatta form was changing and Paterson & Repsevicius finished on the podium for the first time.

The predicted increase in wind strength didn’t materialise but a slightly longer course was set for the final race of the day. This time the octogenarian class stalwart Nils Blumann sailing with Gary Warman got snagged up with the luckless Glamour Buoys at the pin with both doing turns of shame. The rest got away cleanly but ‘shock horror’ at the top mark, a blue kite is not the first to show! A new leader David Yu & Chris Nelson sailing Tuffan Up from RFBYC were in front of the Jerwoods. Brits Alan Bax & Simon Childs (Fforever Young) were having a more consistent day in 3rd.

Bax & Childs got in front of the Jerwoods and then relinquished their 2nd place again but Yu & Nelson remained cool headed to keep a couple of boat lengths ahead on the triangle. At last we had a new race winner but second place was still undecided until the last tack. Bax & Childs came to the finish line of starboard forcing the Jerwoods to tack and snatched second on the line. Tim Walker & Alan Sharpe (Ffollow Us) finished an excellent 4th and the ever consistent Wilson & Summers combo 5th.

 

 

 

David comments on their first bullet of the regatta:

“We had exactly the start that we wanted and that was really the story of the race, we hit the side we wanted to go and after that it was just a matter of sailing a bit conservatively and making sure we stayed ahead of the Jerwoods but the start was the real key.” 

On what seems to be making the difference in their performance Chris adds:

“We have sailed here before but we have been working on our mid range which was the key for us, we just wanted to get a bit quicker in that range of breeze and we feel like we have done that.”

So after day 2 of the regatta Nick & Janet Jerwood have a well deserved commanding lead but the next 5-6 places remain tight especially when a discard comes into play after 5 races are sailed.

With a similar forecast tomorrow, three more races are planned starting from 1100hrs (local time) before a heat wave is expected coming down the coast from Perth where day time temperatures have been in the 40’s today. So the heat is on for the penultimate day of the regatta.

 

Provisional Standings after 4 races (top 6 of 40 boats)

1 AUS3986 Ineffable Nick – Jerwood / Janet Jerwood (SoPYC) 6pts

2 AUS3989 Ffast Lane 4 – John Wilson / Matthew Summers (SoPYC) 16pts

3 AUS3859 Tuffan Up – David Yu / Chris Nelson (RFBYC) 18pts

4 GBR4047 Fforever Young – Alan Bax / Simon Childs (HISC UK) 22pts

5 AUS3743 Spot the Difference – Greg Tonnison / Mark Lovelady (SoPYC) 25pts

6 AUS3987 Ffollow Us – Tim Walker / Alan Sharpe (SoPYC) 27pts

 

For full results see: http://www.sportspage.com.au

nb: follow the links via Esperance Bay YC & ff Australian Championships

 

There is a full schedule of social events for friends and families. More details are available from: www.ebyc.com.au and www.ffiwa.com and the Facebook site: www.facebook.com/FFIWA

The organising authority of the 2017 Gemmill Homes Flying Fifteen 55th Australian National Championship is Esperance Bay Yacht Club (Inc), in conjunction with Flying Fifteen International Australia (Inc).

Sponsors include Gemmill Homes, Westpac Agribusiness, Cliffs, South Coast Insurance Brokers, Southern Ports Authority, Brahma, Ferngrove and Southeast Petroleum.

by Jonny Fullerton of Grand Prix Sailing

 

Blustery opening day of racing in Esperance 

 

 

2017 Gemmill Homes Flying Fifteen 55th Australian National 

Championship at Esperance Bay Yacht Club, WA 

 

A stunning opening days racing at the 2017 Gemmill Homes Flying Fifteen Australian Championship in Esperance. Clear blue skies and a building E/SE breeze starting from 12 – 16 knots climbing to 22 – 28 knots later in the afternoon with some good wave sets.

A windward/leeward, triangle, windward/leeward and one final upwind course proved quite a testing day for the fleet of 40 boats resulting in some wild rides, some collisions and gear breakages. However one of the most disappointed of all was Esperance local David Swan & Matt Elliot who were judged to by a nose over the start line in (Phar Lap) to be recorded OCS.

The first upwind was quite an even split with Philippa Packer & Dean McAulley sailing an ‘Absolutely Ffabulous’ first lap to head the fleet from a very tight pack including an on fire John Wilson & Matt Summers (Fast Lane 4) and previous world champions, Alan Bax & Simon Childs (Fforever Young) from the UK.

 

 

At the second top mark rounding Wilson & Summers had worked up the beat showing superior boat speed and had a glimpse of an opening but alas too close and fouled the Jerwoods resulting in penalty turns. This dropped them down to the pack downwind but to their credit they battled back into contention on the third lap.

John Wilson explains:

“We had a bit of a bad start, we had to tack away because we were buried, but we took it out to the left and had good boat speed so got up to second place at the first mark.”

Matt fills in the details in his clear Scottish accent:

On the second lap we tacked inside the Jerwood’s at the windward mark and were too close so we had to do our turns on the reach leg which put us down to about 8th place. But we were going well upwind and went a bit left and that seemed to pay so we managed to get back up to 2nd.”

 

 

The triangle consisted of two very fast reaches with some incredible surfing down the ever increasing waves. The wing mark became a busy rounding as the Flying Fifteens lived up to their name. The slick boat handling of another previous world champion pair, Nick & Janet Jerwood (Ineffable), saw them climb through the leading pack and hunt down Philippa & Dean to nearly slip inside for the overlap, but a last big wave surge enabled the RFBYC boat to maintain the lead but not for long. Philippa admitted after racing that their gybe was a bit hurried and allowed the Jerwoods a window of opportunity to attack. Behind the lead two boats the places were changing on each leg with Alan Bax & Simon Childs and John Wilson & Matt Summers always in the mix.

One last upwind to the finish and by now the breeze was up to 20+ knots with a seascape of white caps. The Jerwood’s once they got in front covered the fleet to the finish but Wilson & Summers chose to separate from the leading pack and go left gaining back lost ground to finish an excellent second. The British pairing of Bax & Childs held on for 3rd with Packer & McAullay slipping to 4th. David Yu & Chris Nelson (Tuffan Up) sailed an excellent third lap to grab 5th.

 

 

There were a number of breakages, some ripped sails, a submerged boat and some very tired sailors and with the wind gusts hitting 30 knots and white water, PRO John Taylor (JT) had little choice than to raise AP over A and send the fleet home early without a second race.

Any disappointment was soon diminished as sailors were treated to a seafood extravaganza worth the entry fee alone! hosted by local legends Sally & Casper.

Day two of racing has up to 3 races planned with an earlier start as the forecast is similar than today with a building breeze later in the afternoon. Standby for another high octane day of drama.

 

Provisional Results Day 1 (top 6 of 40 boats)

1 AUS3986 Ineffable Nick – Jerwood / Janet Jerwood (SoPYC)

2 AUS3989 Ffast Lane 4 – John Wilson / Matthew Summers (SoPYC)

3 GBR4047 Fforever Young – Alan Bax / Simon Childs (HISC UK)

4 AUS3775 Absolutely Ffabulous – Philippa Packer / Dean McAullay (RFBYC)

5 AUS3859 Tuffan Up – David Yu / Chris Nelson (SoPYC)

6 AUS3743 Spot the Difference – Greg Tonnison / Mark Lovelady (SoPYC)

 

For full results see: http://sportspage.com.au/yacht_clubs/ebyc/ffnats/Result_20170102.htm

 

There is a full schedule of social events for friends and families. More details are available from: www.ebyc.com.au and www.ffiwa.com and the Facebook site: www.facebook.com/FFIWA

The organising authority of the 2017 Gemmill Homes Flying Fifteen 55th Australian National Championship is Esperance Bay Yacht Club (Inc), in conjunction with Flying Fifteen International Australia (Inc).

Sponsors include Gemmill Homes, Westpac Agribusiness, Cliffs, South Coast Insurance Brokers, Southern Ports Authority, Brahma, Ferngrove and Southeast Petroleum.

by Jonny Fullerton of Grand Prix Sailing

 

 

Ideal conditions for pre Championship invitational race

 

 

2017 Gemmill Homes Flying Fifteen 55th Australian National 

Championship at Esperance Bay Yacht Club, WA 

 

Esperance delivered ideal conditions for a genteel introduction to the Gemmill Homes 55th Flying Fifteen Australian National Championship.

A mostly sunny day with a moderate breeze of 12 – 15 knots and relatively flat seas (according to locals, they are described as ripples!) to others they are waves!.

A slightly flustered race committee boat skipper (Kiwi) had a bad start to the day turning the start boat key to the sound of silence. After a short delay, a number of jump leads and some burly local help the committee boat was able to get out to the course for an on time start.

 

 

After one general recall, race officer John Taylor (JT) raised a U flag which seemed to do the trick with a big sag in the middle of the start line for the second go. The course was a windward/leeward followed by a triangle and an upwind to the finish providing a range of sailing angles and a number of place changes throughout the fleet.

However Nick and Janet Jerwood sailing (Ineffable) got a good start and tacked into an early lead at the top mark. The South of Perth YC sailors extended their lead on every leg to lead by a country mile by the last leg to the finish. They finished just under a minute ahead of the chasing pack.

“We got a good start and took a few shifts off the line, got ahead and managed to stay there so we were quite fortunate with a comfortable race after a good start.”  Nick Jerwood

 

 

Philippa Packer and Dean McAullay sailing (Absolutely Ffabulous) worked their way into second place with Philippa letting out a (woop) of satisfaction as they crossed the line but the fight for third was only decided in the last few tacks. Places 3 – 6 were split by 10 seconds. The (Glamour Buoys) Greg Leaversush and Peter Barblett crossed the distance of a dental floss ahead of fourth placed Greg Tonnison and Mark Lovelady (Spot the Difference) with Ron Packer and Steve Ward (Affrodisiac) finishing fifth.

Locals David Swan (Swanny) and Matt Elliot finished 8th sailing a brand new boat (Phar Lap) launched hours earlier in a christening ceremony on the EBYC lawn. Rounding off the top 10 was Alan Bax and Simon Childs from Hayling Island SC in the UK, sailing Fforever Young.

 

 

Nick Jerwood after racing at the bar:

We got down to Esperance a couple of days early to practice and the weather was quite harsh but after that we got two good days of sailing.” Apparently Janet really enjoyed some wild reaches!

“We are fairly comfortable with most breezes but obviously we might struggle against the big guys if it gets above 25kts.”

The rest of the fleet can only pray it blows!

 

 

The whole fleet enjoyed a big New Years Eve bash overlooking the tranquil waters of Esperance Bay and an early day off to recover on New Years Day. The first days racing is scheduled for a 1300hrs (local time) start on Monday 2nd January with a long range forecast of increasing winds and a bit more bumpy seas (or larger ripples as they say at EBYC)!

 

Invitational Race for the Uffa Fox Trophy

1 AUS3986 Ineffable Nick – Jerwood / Janet Jerwood (SoPYC)

2 AUS3775 Absolutely Ffabulous – Philippa Packer / Dean McAullay (RFBYC)

3 AUS3992 Glamour Buoys – Greg Leaversuch / Peter Barblett (RFBYC)

4 AUS3743 Spot the Difference – Greg Tonnison / Mark Lovelady (SoPYC)

5 AUS3619 Affrodisiac – Ron Packer / Steve Ward (RFBYC)

6 AUS3989 Ffast Lane 4 – John Wilson / Matthew Summers (SoPYC)

7 AUS3859 Tuffan Up – David Yu / Chris Nelson (SoPYC)

8 AUS4053 Phar Lap – David Swan / Matt Elliot (EBYC)

9 AUS3879 Aussie Way – Kim Peaker / Neil White (SoPYC)

10 GBR4047 Fforever Young – Alan Bax / Simon Childs (HISC UK)

 

For full results see: : http://www.sportspage.com.au/yacht_clubs/ebyc/ffnats/Result_20161231.htm

There is a full schedule of social events for friends and families. More details are available from: www.ebyc.com.au and www.ffiwa.com and the Facebook site: www.facebook.com/FFIWA

The organising authority of the 2017 Gemmill Homes Flying Fifteen 55th Australian National Championship is Esperance Bay Yacht Club (Inc), in conjunction with Flying Fifteen International Australia (Inc).

Sponsors include Gemmill Homes, Westpac Agribusiness, Cliffs, South Coast Insurance Brokers, Southern Ports Authority, Brahma, Ferngrove and Southeast Petroleum.

by Jonny Fullerton of Grand Prix Sailing

 

 

Eclectic mix of competitors head to Esperance

 

 

2017 Gemmill Homes Flying Fifteen 55th Australian National 

Championship at Esperance Bay Yacht Club 

 

Esperance Bay Yacht Club are hosting the International Flying Fifteen 55th Australian National Championships from Friday 30th December 2016 to Thursday 5th January 2017.

The popular Western Australian venue held the memorable International Flying Fifteen World Championships in 1999 and boasts aqua marine waters, good solid sea breezes and a social scene with a reputation!

41 entries include interstate competitors from Victoria and Queensland and one top team all the way from the UK. An eclectic mix of competitors include world champions, a good mix of male and female sailors and all ages ranging from 17 years to 87 years!

 

 

Former world champion Alan Bax and crew Simon Childs have come all the way from the UK to enjoy some competitive warm water sailing (no doubt in training for the Worlds in Napier, New Zealand in March 2017). But (Baxxy) will surely have his hands full with a number of strong WA teams including another former world championship pairing, Nick & Janet Jerwood and the exuberant glamour buoys, Greg Leaversuch & Peter Barblett and a mixed pairing of Philippa Packer, crewed by former world champ and current RFBYC commodore, Dean McAullay.

Other strong contenders include Ron Packer, crewed by Steve Ward, (builder of the 1983 AC winning Australia ll), former national champions, Ashley Smith & Adam Kingston from Queensland, amongst a strong continent from Royal Freshwater Bay YC and South of Perth YC.

Knowledge of the local waters will likely favour some of the local teams which are represented by a broad range of age groups from the youngest pairing of JJ Wallace (18yrs) & Sam Gardner (21yrs) all the way up to the local icon of the fleet Nils Blumann (82yrs) and his crew Gary Warman. Nils is a former FFI commodore and recipient of the Uffa Fox medal and once sailed a Flying Fifteen from Esperance to Perth, some 560 nm by sea! Also a number of the stories regarding social events seem to be linked to Nils for some reason!!

 

 

Another veteran of the FF scene is Bill Shand (a mere 87yrs) who will be driving across the Nullarbor from Melbourne to compete in his umpteenth championship.

Racing takes place in Open, Silver and Classic categories. An invitational race is scheduled for Sat 31 Dec, followed by a lay day on Sun Jan 1st to enjoy some of the local scenic delights and tastes of Esperance before racing commences on Mon 2 Jan through to  Thu 5 Jan.

There is a full schedule of social events for friends and families. More details are available from: www.ebyc.com.au and www.ffiwa.com and the Facebook site: www.facebook.com/FFIWA

The organising authority of the 2017 Gemmill Homes Flying Fifteen 55th Australian National Championship is Esperance Bay Yacht Club (Inc), in conjunction with Flying Fifteen International Australia (Inc).

Sponsors include Gemmill Homes, Agribusiness, Cliffs, South Coast Insurance Brokers, Southern Ports Authority, Brahma, Ferngrove and Southeast Petroleum.

It is guaranteed to be an event not to miss!!

by Jonny Fullerton of Grand Prix Sailing

 

 

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