Many Thanks to Janette Syme – Skipper of Whisper for contributing her version of events at the NSW J24 Championships RPEYC – Sydney Harbour
Friday – the day before the regatta – boats arrive at RANSA from various points on Sydney Harbour, Victoria and one from South Australia. There is a mixture of crews, skippers , boats owned begged borrowed and stolen – pieced together . And crew all keen – boats sleek, shiny and cleaned. They were all ferried around to moorings outside RPEYC.
RPEYC has a magnificent aspect of the harbour at Point Piper. Essentially an historic building, oozing character, it was comfortable and welcoming. We all sat waiting for the wind on Saturday morning, perched on the verandah, or reading books in the lounge or feet up on the lawn( as you do at regattas!) After a couple of weeks of seabreeze, southerly busters and generally plentiful wind, there was nothing, and grey clouds!( think it must have been the Mexican influence).
None-the-less off we all went at first puff and bobbed around within a couple of start line shifts until a reasonable Easterly settled in. 5-10knots. So the first day only managed 2 races but hotly contested in the light airs. Dave Suda ( Sandringham YC) in Pacemaker secured a win as did Sean Kirkjian (RPEYC) in Sailpac. The racing was set around mid harbour – across the chanel – windward/leewards. Sean Wallis (Perth ) sailing Kaotic was first to the windward mark in race 1 only to hit it – lost 4 places doing penalty turns. Creditable sailing from Ace (MHYC), Vortex(MHYC) , Kicking Bottom ( Sandringham YC) and El Fidelo (SA CYC) , Code Violation (Sandringham YC) and By the Lee ( Sandringham YC)to fill the places.
Sunday started with a 10 knot sea breeze NE – sun shining– the harbour littered with the usual power boats, ferries , speed bumps etc. Definite western shore lift and turning tide run out – affecting all boats up and down stream especially races 5 and 6. The wind lifted to 15-20 knots NE , perfect seabreeze and great sailing. Downwind legs generally favoured the shoreline and boats mostly headed for the starboard gate. Ferries had a habit of splitting the fleet with many boats gaining or loosing a place because of a ferry or two. All in all, the series was predominantly clearly contested which is great to see.
So after 6 races I think we could all feel our arms, shoulders and hands and wore a generous amount of sea spray and wind burn. But for the most part everyone was smiling.
Congratulations to Dave Suda and the Pacemaker crew who deservedly won the NSW title again. To Sean Kirkjian and crew a fabulous 2nd and Sean Wallis and crew in Kaotic ( Arthur Crothers)rolled in third. Handicap winner was Jagged Edge ( Leon Ratner REPYC), 2nd By The Lee (Brendan Lee Sandringham YC) and 3rd Whisper ( Janette Syme with fab all girl crew MYC).
Many thanks to NSW committee especially Sean Kirkjian for organizing a great regatta – see you next year same time same place!