2010-2011 NSW F11 State Championship - Race 7
The 90 entries in the open and 6 entries in the Green fleets had experienced all types of conditions during the series which genuinely tested the full range of skills each sailor possessed and ultimately producing a very fair playing field for all crews to try and become the new NSW Flying 11 Champions for the F11 main season....
Sunday 13th February – Pittwater, NSW
Another day of southerly winds graced the menu for the final race 7 of the 2010-2011 NSW Flying 11 State Championship held over the two weekend regattas in November 2010 and February 2011.
The 90 entries in the open and 6 entries in the Green fleets had experienced all types of conditions during the series which genuinely tested the full range of skills each sailor possessed and ultimately producing a very fair playing field for all crews to try and become the new NSW Flying 11 Champions for the F11 main season.
Matt Stenta and Simon Murnaghan in 1397 The Big Apple had scored two bullets from the previous day’s racing to achieve an unbeatable lead in the series so the final day was left to determine the minor places with the next handful of crews separated by only 2 points and the remaining podium places very much up for grabs. 1397 The Big Apple were not letting up either as they had their eyes set on claiming another win in the series to fill the last box on their scorecard.
The RO Col Chidgey announced that the final race would commence at 1125hrs with a start line way out in open waters off Lion Island. The swell was around 2-3m and the expected southerly winds of 25kts were eagerly anticipated by the young 8-18 year olds in their final all-in stoush for the season. There was plenty of current flowing out of the Hawkesbury River and the tide was set for change just after the scheduled starting time.
Out in the middle of the mouth of the Hawkesbury with increasingly steep 3m rollers cascading into Broken Bay, one more line of around 450m was laid and racing for race 7 got underway cleanly at 1133hrs.
Local sailors 1386 Wet Willy, Will Dargaville and Sean Watt ASC were first out of the gate at the pin end, 1394 Whomp, Nick and Shaun Connor, 1311 Up Beat, Tiarne Hayes and Rebecca Glendenning HPCYC and 1396 Voodoo, Matt Ivshenko and Chris Stenta M16’SSC were amongst the close followers with 1394 Whomp tacking back on port just 20 secs from the start to find their nemesis from the previous day 1397 The Big Apple who had started further toward the middle.
By the first cross-over, 1394 Whomp had to duck the stern of 1397 The Big Apple whilst 1386 Wet Willy kept clear further to the left whilst 1362 Guccii Harry Price and Simon Boardman M16’SSC had started mid-line and banged it right to appear to have the edge on the stampede to the top of the course.
As the fleet began to converge at the top mark, it was difficult to determine just who was going to snare the lead. 1362 Guccii were approaching from the right side and 1386 Wet Willy climbing up from centre-left but by the starboard lay line it was 1362 Guccii that had managed to head their rivals 1386 Wet Willy by a couple of boat lengths with a separation of 5 boat lengths to 1388 Zephyr Finn Buick and Alicia Holmes M16’SSC, 1397 The Big Apple and 1394 Whomp.
1386 Wet Willy were not letting 1362 Guccii out of their grasp across the extra long reach and continued to pressure them as they soared across the crests of the big swells rolling into the bay with 1397 The Big Apple closing in from astern.
At the gybe mark, 1362 Guccii seemingly dropped down off the garage roof to round the mark still leading from 1386 Wet Willy with 1379 Fire Fly, Ravi Raj and Emma Jones HHSC sneaking through on the inside of the bend along with 1393 Wave Runner, Malcolm and Harry Parker ASC and 1394 Whomp. The second reach to leeward was spectacular with the boats hooking up on the faces of these big swells and surfing dramatically with bows out of the water back to their centreboards. The crews were having the time of their lives lurching down the faces of the waves and level of skill of the Flying 11 crews was nothing short of dazzling in most cases. There were some big gains to be made by snaring the power from these huge waves with the positions being re-shuffled throughout the fleet.
1362 Guccii had managed to hold out the competition by the leeward mark to head back up the second work seven boat lengths ahead of 1379 Fire Fly, 1397 The Big Apple revelling in the conditions to close in behind them followed by 1393 Wave Runner and 1396 Voodoo.
The leading pack headed off to the right side of the course beating up to the top mark for the second time in the now softened breeze of 12kts with threatening skies overhead darkening the day. It was now 1397 The Big Apple applying the blowtorch to the crew of 1362 Guccii with now shifty conditions seeping on the course, many covering tacks between the leader and second spot whilst other crews remained steadfast to the right hand layline. It was an anxious situation for both crews and spectators as they climbed up the course knowing anything could happen to upset the apple-cart.
Once again 1362 Guccii had held out all challengers in a tense display of cool headedness and rounded the top mark for the run down to the leeward a 20sec gap to 1397 The Big Apple and 1337 Shake Your Booties II, Caitlyn and Sophie McIntosh B16’SC doing very well banging back from way out on the right layline next around followed by 1379 Fire Fly and 1394 Whomp.
Apart from the swell, the seaway had become very quiet and the cloud cover had certainly turned off the lights as the fleet slowly crept down the square run, the crews searching for the merest opportunity that came their way.
By the turn at the bottom of the course, the breeze was again returning to the course area and 1397 The Big Apple had closed the lead 1362 Guccii were fiercely defending to three boat lengths, these two boats 30secs ahead of the next crews 1379 Fire Fly, 1337 Shake Your Booties II and 1394 Whomp.
CLOSE RACING BETWEEN GUCCII AND THE BIG APPLE
1362 Guccii were faced with fighting tooth and nail yet again up the third work, the intense covering over 1397 The Big Apple who were never letting up resulting in a rather hushed spectator fleet gathered to watch the final play of the series. Tack for tack these two wrestled their way to the top mark for the last time, once again 1362 Guccii holding them out at the turn to head out to the wing mark in a soft breeze around 8kts with only a few gusts here and there on offer. 1394 Whomp, 1379 Fire Fly and 1337 Shake Your Booties II led the following fleet around next in reach of the two leaders who were locked into a close but slow reaching duel out to the seaward wing mark.
The final reach down to the bottom of the course was nothing but tense. 1397 The Big Apple had grabbed an equal but leeward position to 1362 Guccii, the swell still bounding into the mouth of the river and very scattered and varying gusts advantaging one crew then the other. Until two thirds of the way down this leg, it was anyone’s race before 1362 Guccii locked onto a wave and broke the stalemate sneaking one phase ahead of the series leaders.
The battle remained the same up the final work with 1362 Guccii, Harry Price and Simon Boardman never releasing their iron clad cover to cross the finish line after 1.29hrs of high pressure sailing ahead of the new NSW F11 Champions 1397 The Big Apple, Matt Stenta and Simon Murnaghan in second place followed by the new NSW F11 Junior crew brothers 1394 Whomp, Nick and Shaun Connor.
It was a befitting end to a magnificent display of skill, tenacity and endurance of all these young crews over the entire series and a satisfying end to the Flying 11 regatta season of 2010-2011.
Results summary were:
1. 1397 The Big Apple Matt Stenta and Simon Murnaghan M16’SSC
2. 1394 Whomp Nick and Shaun Connor M16’SSC
3. 1383 Swift and Shift Josh Tasker and Lachlan Atkins CSC
4. 1362 Guccii Harry Price and Simon Boardman M16’SSC
5. 1396 Voodoo Matt Ivshenko and Chris Stenta M16’SSC
6. 1386 Wet Willy Will Dargaville and Sean Watt ASC
1. 1394 Whomp Nick and Shaun Connor M16’SSC
All Girl Crew
2. 1391 Bolt Nicola Forbes-Smith and Alicia Watt ASC
3. 1187 The Cutting Edge Adam Cooke and Erin Mae Loosemore B16’SC
1. 1269 Bullet Bill Lusty and Jack Henry Tait LC12’SSC
2. 1371 Playbuoy Nathan Judges and Jack Cuthbert ASC
3. 1351 Personal Responsibilities Jarrod Turner and Hayden Sullivan B16’SC
1. 1359 Frantic Kate MacDonald and Cassie Piggot CSC
2. 1389 Bite Zac Davies and Ella Davis CSC
3. 1161 Living on the Edge Ruby Scholtenm and Ella Catlin Struchers ASC
Full reports and result via the Flying 11 class website www.flying11.yachting.org.au
|PHOTOS Of Race 7|