2009 F11 Australian Champs Races 3 & 4
A solid nor-easter was promised for day three of the 1824(TM) Flying Eleven 2009 Australian Championships and finally true to expectations, it was already honking in........
Tuesday, 13th January 2009
Race 3 - A solid nor-easter was promised for day three of the 1824(TM) Flying Eleven 2009 Australian Championships and finally true to expectations, it was already honking in around 10am as the fleet commenced it's march to the start of race 3 up to the outer course on Twofold Bay, Eden. We also had sunny skies and a decent swell rolling in from the Tasman Sea. Being on the outer course meant the seaway was also minimal with a little chop so a perfect day of sailing was shaping up for day three of the regatta.
The PRO Peter Moor got the fleet of 73 Flying Elevens off to a clear start on the first attempt at 11:05 with the majority of the fleet heading up the left side of the course to the first mark. The fleet stuck fairly close together up the first beat, all crews giving their all to somehow get some separation from the pack for some clear air.
The breeze was perhaps the fairest for all since their arrival at around 15kts, and Hunters Hill sailors 1358 DECOY Declan Rohr and Alex Paton managed to edge their way around the top mark first ahead of 1362 GUCCII Alex McFadyen and Bradley Leicester M16'SSC, 1305 LETHAL BLONDE Kris Fay and Emma Knighton B16'SC, 1363 CRUNCHIE Olivia Price and Maddie Clancy M16'SSC, and 1306 FATTY & SKINNY Same Ellis and Caitlyn McIntosh B16'SC.
By the wing mark, the lead had been claimed by 1362 GUCCII with cousin 1363 CRUNCHIE second and 1358 DECOY snapping close behind them at tremendous pace seemingly soaring across the tops of the 2m swell to the bottom mark, the entire fleet surfing down the waves in exhilarating style in pursuit.
Another hard fought work up the second beat gave 1362 GUCCII the second top mark rounding, 1369 TOM TOM Tom Koerner and Joshua Ponton ASC now in the fray around next just ahead of 1363 CRUNCHIE, with 1353 FLYING HELLFISH Josh McKnight and Ira Dubery M16'SSC and 1368 COTTON ON Scott Cotton and Max Vos ASC a little further back.
The conditions continued to build to 20kts + and a new leader in 1353 FLYING HELLFISH assumed the mantle to lead around the top mark for the last time, 1362 GUCCII now second ahead of 1363 CRUNCHIE third, and 1358 DECOY back in the front pack fourth and 1368 COTTON ON holding onto fifth spot. The remainder of the fleet all seemed ecstatic with the conditions, beaming smiles from many crews giving no doubt they were having the time of their lives grabbing hold of the rollers leading down the track to the wing mark into the heart of Twofold Bay. You couldn't ask for better!
The final beat to windward and the finish line for race 3 once again became a battle between club team mates 1353 FLYING HELLFISH, 1362 GUCCI and the girls of 1363 CRUNCHIE, none giving any quarter to the other, continually forcing new plays upon their opponents, exhausting themselves and the spectator fleet alike.
Race 4 - The fleet return to the water after lunch in a softer NE breeze than expected around the 12kts mark, with the PRO deciding to return to the inside course and shorten the legs in expectation of the forecasted 30kts later in the day from the BOM. Sunny skies and swell still predominated but with shorter chop due to shallower waters inside, making things a little busier than the morning's race.
A few pre-race situations cropped up with 1212 KILL THE PIGEON Alina and Jasmine Muller ASC who were forced to retire back to the beach with a broken tiller extension and Stuart Gilbert (our Protest Committee chairman) was out on water as a replacement crew sailing with his daughter Annalise in 1271 GOANNA M16'SSC.
Otherwise, the fleet was unchanged and racing got underway after a general at 3:20pm, with a big left hander over to the left hand side bending the front line of the fleet just after the start and the boat end being the favoured side during the last moments of the start sequence. Clear air was gold and the fleet were scattered across the course, an obvious clear advantage for crews on the right now leading the race up the first beat to windward.
1353 FLYING HELLFISH had punched their way through the pack and chop and rounded the first top mark a number of boat lengths ahead of 1355 EUGENE Tim Forbes-Smith and Wil Dargaville ASC, 1305 LETHAL BLONDE, 1363 CRUNCHIE, 1366 PROTAGONIST Declan Reilly and James Lawira Fernandez M16'SSC.
The lead remained unchallenged by the wing mark and 1353 FLYING HELLFISH managed to grab a gust and surge a good 10 boat lengths initially away from 1363 CRUNCHIE who had advanced on the first reach to second place. But with the breeze starting to fluctuate on the second reach, the initial gain closed somewhat to bunch the front runners up by the time they arrived at the bottom mark, with 1362 GUCCII now around in third spot.
All the front runners went hard left in order to get on the ladder early and tack to port and advance to the top mark for the second time, with 1353 FLYING HELLFISH and 1362 GUCCII furthest to the left and 1363 CRUNCHIE choosing to tack off earlier and work the windward side of these two competitors. 1353 FLYING HELLFISH earned the hard fought second top mark lead position 15secs ahead of 1363 CRUNCHIE, with 1362 GUCCII another 15secs astern of them, followed by 1366 PROTAGONIST and Belmont's 1305 LETHAL BLONDE.
The breeze was still a little shifty by now but the pressure was building slightly at around 17kts. Another close battle ensued down the reaches and back up the third beat between the same three leading boats, with the lead swapping regularly as they crossed. The game was on and all three crews were playing hardball. 1363 CRUNCHIE this time took the cheese to round 20secs ahead of 1353 FLYING HELLFISH neck and neck with 1362 GUCCII. The pressure was showing as 1363 CRUNCHIE and 1362 GUCCII both had spinnaker issues momentarily causing all three to bunch together once more, the lead still just remaining with the girls. 1366 PROTAGONIST rounded 50secs later ahead of 1305 LETHAL BLONDE.
As the fleet followed, newly crowned 2009 Sabot National Champion 1352 BORIS Felix Grech and his crew Luke Murphy HHSC picked up the line of the top mark with their centreboard and briefly abducted it toward the wing. Once cleared, they inevitably did their turns and continued on their way with renewed vigour.
Meanwhile, the leaders had started their way up the final beat of the day; it still being anyone's race between them. The three club mates duelled continually until 1363 CRUNCHIE desperately broke to left 300m from the line while the other two on port before 1353 FLYING HELLFISH then tacked to starboard on the lay to the pin end of the finish while 1362 GUCCII continued 5 more boat lengths before laying the finish boat end of the line. As the leaders approached the line, no-one could tell who would get the better of who for any of the podium places. 1363 CRUNCHIE was the last to tack back onto starboard to lay the pin end and by only seven or so boat lengths to go, it did appear they just might beat the boys across the line.
1363 CRUNCH won the fourth race by 7secs over 1353 FLYING HELLFISH followed by 1362 GUCCII, again 1sec separating second and third place.
The race was described by some as the hardest and intense encounters one could find on water in any class. Coupled with the morning's race where first place was 9 secs ahead of second and 1sec to third, the winner of the afternoon's race 7secs ahead of second place, again 1sec from third, it was a truly unique day of fine sailing. Adding to this extraordinary day, these three were from the same club.
As we now have a series, tomorrow will be a lay day so the fleet can restore. All crews have worked enormously hard and some of the work these smaller crews have accomplished really need to be seen to believe.
Back on Thursday for more competition.
- 1362 GUCCII Alex McFadyen and Bradley Leicester M16'SSC
- 1353 FLYING HELLFISH Josh McKnight and Ira Dubery M16'SSC
- 1363 CRUNCHIE Olivia Price and Maddie Clancy M16'SSC
- 1358 DECOY Declan Rohr and Alex Paton HHSC
- 1368 COTTON ON Scott Cotton and Max Vos ASC
- 1369 TOM TOM Tom Koerner and Joshua Ponton
- 1305 LETHAL BLONDE Kris Fay and Emma Knighton B16'SC
- 1306 FATTY & SKINNY Sam Ellis and Caitlyn McIntosh B16'SC
- 1355 EUGENE Tim Forbes-Smith and Wil Dargaville ASC
- 1335 HYDROMATTIC Matt Stenta and Sam Holmes M16'SSC
1. 1363 CRUNCHIE Olivia Price and Maddie Clancy M16'SSC
2. 1353 FLYING HELLFISH Josh McKnight and Ira Dubery M16'SSC
3. 1362 GUCCII Alex McFadyen and Bradley Leicester M16'SSC
4. 1366 PROTAGONIST Declan Reilly and James Lawira Fernandez M16'SSC
5. 1305 LETHAL BLONDE Kris Fay and Emma Knighton B16'SC
6. 1355 EUGENE Tim Forbes-Smith and Wil Dargaville ASC
7. 1369 TOM TOM Tom Koerner and Joshua Ponton
8. 1361 DO GEESE SEE GOD Robert and Kasha Wojcik M16'SSC
9. 1351 PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITIES Tim Dey & Brad May B16'SC
10. 1340 XLR8 James Vandervoort and Mitchell Webb B16'SC
|Results Race 3|
|Photos Race 3|
|Results Race 4|
|Photos Race 4|