Western Australia Yachting

Yachting WA Newsletter Issue 144

Yachting WA Newsletter Issue 144

17/04/2014, Western Australia, Yachting, Yachting WA, Article # 1946319

Farwell to Yachting WA's Tony Claydon
It was a sad farewell from the Yachting WA Staff today for General Manager Tony Claydon who, after thirteen years, is heading off to travel the world.
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Schools Teams Racing Test Event at Mandurah Yachting WA SunSmart Schools Teams Racing Championship
MOFSC Host Test Event For Schools Teams Racing
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Royal Perth Yacht Club Crowned for Excellence
Royal Perth Yacht Club was for the fifth time recognised for their achievement in excellence at the 2014 Clubs WA Awards Night.
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WA Commodores Association Continues to Attract Members
It was pleasing to report that the Association is gaining a number of outport members particularly from the south west including most recent memberships from Ken Dean, Ian Meiklejohn & Ken Waller from Geographe Bay Yacht Club, Judy Talbot from Koombana Bay Sailing Club and Rob Giraudo from Princess Royal Sailing Club.
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Whoa - Sheilas on Sharpies at East Fremantle
Yes, it’s true – the girls want to have as much fun..... on boats, as the guys, and it’s all happening at East Fremantle Yacht Club.
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38 O’Pen BIC’s Storm the Infamous East Fremantle Drainpipe
A record 38 O’Pen Bics participated in the two days of racing for the fleet which was divided into Gold and Silver. In little over five years, the O’Pen Bics have fast grown as the most exciting junior sailing dinghy in Western Australia for youngsters aged from 8 to 14.
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Open House Invitation Draws the Crowd to South of Perth Yacht Club
In an effort to lower barriers, perceived or otherwise, South of Perth Yacht Club invited the public to its Open House on Sunday 1 April 2014. Guests were lured via a successful radio advertising campaign to experience the varied aspects of the club, the facilities, the sports and the social enrichment.
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2014 Foundation Youth Cup
It is fantastic to see talented young sailors give the bigger keelboats a go. The close racing shown over the Foundation Youth Cup highlights the success of the youth development programs at the clubs.
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The Rottnest Festival of Sail – Next Factor’s Weekend
Held under the auspices of the Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club, the Rottnest Festival of Sail was conceived by Greg Kerr a keen sailor and Rottnest Foundation Board Member after experiencing the Isle of Wight “Round the Island Race” in 2001.
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2014 Mirror State Championships Decided at Safety Bay Yacht Club
Seventeen Mirrors contested the 2014 State Championships held in two series; the first series of four races at Maylands Yacht Club on Sunday 17th October in light conditions and the second series held at Safety Bay Yacht Club over the last weekend in March 2014.
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Club Development Officer Scheme to Benefit WA Sports Clubs
The State Government will invest $2.6million over the next two years to expand the successful Club Development Officer (CDO) Scheme, benefitting more than 3,320 sporting and recreation clubs across the State. The scheme - a partnership between the Department of Sport and Recreation and local governments - involves CDOs working with volunteers to build the capacity of clubs across the State.
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New Channel Opens at Port Geographe
New channel opens at Port Geographe Skippers navigating waters at Port Geographe are being urged to take extra care following the opening of a new channel to enter the marina.
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Eun Na Mara - The Bird of the Sea returns to the Swan River
Eun Na Mara, Bird of the Sea returns to Perth where Ralph and Lynne Newton plan restoration work after which they will sail her from South of Perth Yacht Club under the number SP1907.
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Yachting WA Newsletter

Yachting WA Newsletter

21/01/2014, Western Australia, Yachting, Yachting WA, Article # 1486699

Yachting WA Newsletter   Making Waves


Sabre Champion Scott Olsen on an upwind beat      Photo: Perth Sailing Photography

Swan River successfully swamped with Australian Sabres

The acknowledged master of the Sabre in WA is Scott Olson of PDSC and he gave no quarter over the regatta, taking a steady series of nine bullets in the nine races. However the racing was far more interesting for second through to fourth with Mark Soulsby of South Australia winning on count back from Victorian Gary McLennan (both on 24 points) and Nick Mouat again from Victoria, one point behind the pair.  Second and third were resolved on the final day with McLennan jumping to second by beating Soulsby over the line into fourth.  

The Perth Dinghy Sailing Club is the first club in WA to host the Sabres National Championships in the West and the regatta got off to an excellent start with no less than 35 visiting sailors from South Australia, Victoria, NSW, Tasmania and Queensland.   Perth Dinghy Sailing Club is renowned for their hospitality and regatta organisation but this regatta has made the records by drawing more visiting sailors to a WA championship than any other Class in many, many years – a credit to the organizers under the helm of Brian and Jenny Jones.

Catering easily for all ages and sizes, the single handed competitive Sabre has had a delightful renaissance and the Class continues to rapidly grow, spreading now over four WA clubs.  

The three competing Youth sailors grouped closely mid fleet to finish a creditable 51st (Chris Gallen, EFYC), 52nd (Oliver Medd, PDSC) and 54th Ryan Miragliotta, EFYC).  Young Oliver challenged Sabre Grand Veteran (and grandfather) Harold Medd from Black Rock, Victoria to prove his sailing prowess which fortunately he did being the Sabre duelers the spectators loved to watch.

The lady skippers finished in the following order: Fiona McCulloch (BRYC) followed by Emma Hall (SA) and WA’s Leone Woo from East Fremantle Yacht Club.

As the only yacht club in the City of Perth area, the regatta was officially opened by Deputy Mayor of Perth Rob Butler who suggested, after a particularly blustery Welcome Day day on the Swan River, and with the tail of the cyclone imminent, that the Welcome Night was possibly a good time for the sailors to STOP praying for strong winds and enjoy what they had – how right he was – the winds for the duration were perfect. An abundance of Race Officers assisting John McQueen meant that no slight went unnoticed and a hugely successful regatta was enjoyed by all on the sheltered waters of Matilda Bay over the New Year period.

2014 Australian Laser Champions Tristan Brown (Radials) and Matthew Wearn (Standards)

WA Lasers Star at McCrae Nationals

Another brilliant result for WA sailing with double world champion Tristan Brown defending and retaining his 2013/14 Australian Laser Radial title, and Matthew Wearn claiming the Standard title.

After gusts of up to 50knots for the practice day Melbourne conditions cooled creating tricky conditions for the remainder of the championships starting with a ‘ripping tide’ on day one which carried into the second day where an oscillating south westerly breeze and a strong tide suited only the locals.

Inconsistent breeze and tricky conditions made for heavy work initially but by mid regatta the westerlies had swung in and sailors were adjusting.  Spectators were happy as the courses were laid closer to the beach and day four saw further light and shifty conditions providing mixed results.

Despite the light conditions the 4.7 fleet enjoyed some tight racing right up to the very end with Hamish Wiltshire (NT) overhauling Jack Graves (VIC) to take the title with McCrae sailor Brody Riley placed third overall in the Laser 4.7. The only WA sailors to make the 4.7’s  top ten were Vasco Anfang (6th) and Jonathan Pang ( 9th).

World Champion Tristan Brown (WA) was the only Radial consistently placing in the top five identifying him early as a clear winner but nothing should be taken from fellow WA sailor Alistair Young who had a brilliant regatta taking second.

 In the Standard fleet Australian Sailing Team member Matthew Wearn (WA) lead the fleet as expected. Luke Elliott (WA) sailed consistently with two strong finishes at the end of the regatta claiming fourth in the standards.  Mark Spearman (WA) member of the Australian Sailing Squad who had only recently moved from Radials into the Standards, had a mixed regatta plagued with breakages to finish 7th followed by Ben Walkemeyer in 8th.


Willy Packer sails Scoundrel to Prince Phillip Cup Success


2014 Prince Phillip Cup Claimed by Scoundrel,  Willy Packer

Scoundrel has won the Prince Phillip Cup in a well sailed series on the Swan River with close racing and 5 different winners in 7 races.  Willy Packer and his crew Denis Cullity and Julian Harding from Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club had the silverware in the bag to the very last race when a back line start could have thwarted thier quest.

The daunting fleet of 26 Dragons included 2007 World Champions German Tommy Muller sailing with Mario Wagner and Richard Franklin (NSW), and former IDA Chairman, Rob Campbell from UK who sailed Sandy Anderson’s Linnae with local crew John Low, John Moncrieff and James Stout. The Australian lineup included five previous Prince Phillip Cup Champions; Gordon Ingate,  Bunn Lynn, Sandy Anderson, Peter Bowman and Willy Packer alongside previous World Champions from the  Flying Fifteen Class, John Cassidy and Grant Alderson.  Octogenarian Gordon Ingate also holds a 5.5 Meter Class World title.

A tough start to the regatta saw strong winds resulting in damaged Dragons, battered crews and seven retirements on the first day.  Rob Campbell (Linnae) and Veteran Gordon Ingate (Whimsical) and his crew David Giles and Brad Sherridan led the fleet

Day two in 20knots saw Scoundrel limp home in 7th when, having regained lost ground to a misinterpreted start, his mainsail halyard misbehaved within meters of the finish line. Tommy Muller crossed the line third only to find an OCS awaiting him.

Perth’s champagne sailing conditions returned for the third day of racing and the local sailors enjoyed an advantage until the breeze faded and the flight of dragons become fiery.   Taranui (Grant Alderson) dominated the pack with support from RFBYC’s Icefyre (Ron Packer) Seajoy ( Rob Perrin)  andSassfras (John Cassidy).  Despite having sailed a Dragon for only two weeks, former Flying Fifteen World Champions Grant Alderson and Dean McAullay with Adele Jackson and 11 year old Lucy Alderson claimed the victory after a finish line challenge by  Sinewave (Tommy Muller)..

A sweltering day four brought about a protest between Whimsical and Scoundrel which was settled inScoundrel’s favour resulting in a 3rd but a DSQ for Gordon Ingate. The placing to date was close with Rob Campbell leading, chased by Willy Packer, Tommy Mueller and Gordon Ingate who fortunately was able to utilize his DSQ as a discard.

Race day six saw Willy Packer take his first win of the regatta and brother Ron cross the line within a whisker of his brother to take second from Andrew Foulkes in a breathtaking finish and a battle royale for podium place.

A delayed start on the final day had Dragons on edge. Scoundrel was behind when the gun fired and starting wizard Whimsical had his masterful position at the pin end.  Linnae needed a win to claim the Cup and was up there with Whimsical and Taranui whilst Scoundrel was only mid fleet but slowly clawing through the pack.  

Gordon Ingate took the gun with his second win of the regatta securing him a third overall. Next across the line was Rob Campbell sealing second overall and Grant Alderson crossed third with Willy Packer finishing 6th to take the overall Dragon championship.


Coach Belinda Stowell with protégés Emerson Carlberg and Lachlan Gilmour 2013/2014 420 Champions       Alex McKinnon Photography

WA Cleans up at 420’s National Championships at Sorrento in Victoria

West Australia took the International 420 Australian Nationals in both the Youth and Open Classes at the Sorrento Sailing and Couta Boat Club on the Mornington Peninsula in Victoria from 26th December 2013 to 2nd January 2014.

Sailing in a variety of breezes from knock down blows of 40 knots on the practice day to steady and inviting sea breezes of 10 to 15 knots, Emerson Carlberg teamed up with last year’s winner Lachy Gilmour to take the title from the perennial bridesmaids Xavier Winston-Smith and Josh Dawson of New South Wales.  

First female team and fifth overall were WA’s Nia Jerwood and Lisa Smith managing to stay in front of fellow WA sailors Will Boulden and Nick Gale in seventh.

WA’s premier coaches Arthur Brett and Belinda Stowell have done the WA sailors proud as reflected by their results during this championship period.  Results: http://www.sscbc.bvit.com.au/site/yachting/event/54756/overall_1.html

420 Female Winners and 5th Overall Lisa Smith and Nia Jerwood with Coach Belinda Stowell         Alex McKinnon Photography


Close sailing for the Sharpies in Matilada Bay  Photo: Lou Hollis

The Lizard takes unassailable lead in 71st Sharpie Nationals

True to form Peter Chappell has taken the Australian Sharpie title for the fifth time. Chappell sailing The Lizard with Peter Nicholas and Luke Payne was tipped to win from South Australian David Higgins who definitely gave Chappell a run for his money.  Higgins in All Scoobed Out is the brother of six-time National Champion, Mal Higgins, who did not compete this year.

The thrills and spills started on Invitation Race Day with the Fremantle Doctor delivering strong winds resulting in carnage for several fleets on the Swan River, however as conditions steadied so the sailors adapted and the multiple regattas progressed with initially blustery conditions easing to solid but steady winds. 

Mounts Bay Sailing Club hosted the 71st Australian Sharpie National Championship regatta for 42 entrants from 28th December 2013 to 4th January 2014.  The good turnout indicates a continuing popularity for the Sharpie class which has undergone recent change.  The hard-chined planing hulls now carry bigger spinnakers and the class recently introduced carbon-fibre booms and spinnaker poles. At nearly 6.1m in length with one on trapeze, Sharpies not only are fast to windward, but are renowned for exhilarating kite reaches.

Sharpies are sailed at East Fremantle Yacht Club, Geographe Bay Yacht Club and Mounts Bay Sailing Club.  For further information visit http://www.washarpies.com/


Conor Nicholas Winner of the Laser Radial Australian Youth Championship receives the trophy from Australian Sailing Coach Victor Kovalenk o and  Yachting Australia President Matt Owen          Photo:  B Malone Photography 

Top three Laser Radial spots filled by WA at The Australian Youth Championship 2014

The Australian Youth Championship, after five days of racing on the Mornington Peninsula, VIC, came to a close on Friday with the 2014 national champions crowned and positions on the 2014 Australian Sailing Youth Team secured. The 2014 Australian Sailing Youth Team will represent Australia at this year’s ISAF Youth Sailing World Championship (Under 19) to be held in Tavira, Portugal from 12-19 July 2014. 

The final day of racing saw the193 crews in the six championship classes get a few more races in after a weak breeze on yesterday’s penultimate day had cancelled racing in most categories. Today lifted the total number of races in all classes to ten. 
The 420 class was dominated by strong performances of the female crews and New South Wales crew of Dana Tavener and Catherine Pagett not only took out the Australian Girls Championship title but also the overall win in this class. Based on combined results and after the duo were several places ahead of Tavener-Pagett at the 420 Nationals in Sorrento a couple of weeks ago, it was second placed Western Australian crew of Nia Jerwood and Lisa Smith, who will represent Australia in this class in Portugal. 

In the male category, the upset of the day was of the New Zealanders Sam Barnett and Zak Merton beating Western Australians Emerson Carlberg and Lachlan Gilmour to the top spot. The duo had led the New Zealanders all week, but were disqualified in Friday’s second race after crossing the start line too soon. As the top Australian 420 male crew, Carlberg and Gilmour still managed to secure their spot on the Australian Sailing Youth Team. 

In the Laser Radial Class, the top three spots were filled by Western Australian sailors Conor Nicholas, Christopher Charlwood and Alistair Young. His first place youth result at Laser Nationals in McCrae earlier this month secured youngster Alistair Young the spot on the National Youth Sailing team. At only 16 years of age, it will be Alistair’s first World Championship. 

29er sailors Jim Colley (NSW) and Shaun Connor had an excellent regatta run securing them Australian Champion title in this class ahead of Kurt Hansen and Harry Morton (NSW) with Max Giudice and Hayden Hunt (WA) in third. 

In the Laser 4.7 fleet, which is not part of the Youth Sailing World Championship, Northern Territory Sailor Hamish Wiltshire took out the Championship title ahead of Victorian Jack Graves and Tyrone Gowans in third (VIC). 

The Australian Sailing Youth Team will be endorsed by the Yachting Australia Board at the beginning of February and will prepare at their individual home locations as well as in a joint training camp at Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron in Brisbane just prior to Sail Brisbane in April. The Laser Radial and 420 boys and girls will be the guests of the Japan Sailing Federation in the annual Australia-Japan Youth Sailing Exchange in March. This will be the third year of this exchange and is highly valued by both countries. 

The 2014 Australian Youth Championship was held at Blairgowrie Yacht Squadron and Sorrento Sailing Couta Boat Club on the Mornington Peninsula, VIC from January 6 – 10 2014. Host club for the 2015 Australian youth Championship will be Fremantle Yacht Club in Western Australia from 6-10 January 2015. 

Event website: click here

Champions Tessa Parkinson & Chelsea Hall commanded the 49er FX fleet    Photo: David Price


9er Nationals

Collectively named the 9ers, the 2013-14 Australian Championships for the 29er, 49er and 49er FX classes was hosted by Royal Brighton Yacht Club, Victoria from 28 December 2013 to 3 January 2014 attracting a big entry fleet of 76 boats.  Racing was completed in overcast conditions with southerly breezes swinging westerly.

In the 49er FX competition, Tessa Parkinson & Chelsea Hall (WA) commanded the fleet of nine boats to win the Australian 49er FX Championship with 18 points to spare over Olivia Price and Eliza Solly (NSW).  Harry Price and Angus Williams claimed third.  WA crews Ella Clark and Caitlin Elks crewed for skippers Hayley Outteridge and Tess Lloyd who respectively claimed 4th and 5th.

David Gilmour & Sam Phillips (WA) claimed the 49er National Championship at the last possible minute finishing on equal points with the leaders throughout the regatta, Steven Thomas & Jasper Warren (WA) after their two final wins  gave David Gilmour & Sam Phillips the tie-break.   Victorians William Phillips and Rhys Mara finished 3rd.  Fellow Western Australians Matthew Jerwood and Alex Landwher claimed 8th and the gutsy Morrison brothers Luke and Jack, persevered to finish 11th.  

Charlie Wyatt and Tom Siganto (QLD) claimed the Australian 29er Championship with a three point margin in a strong fleet of 55 players.  A very new and young contingent of 29er sailors from WA participated with more gains from the perspective of experience than podium placings and conditions lighter than what the sailors were used to.  Rockingham sailors Alicia Spencer and Jacob Dennison were the top placed WA sailors in 13th.  

For the final results and information about the event, visit www.rbyc.org.au/9er

29er Fleet Start at 2014 Nationals     Photo:  David Staley



Viper 640 Fang Crew of Tony Johnson, Tim Reger and Rob Murdoch with the trophy 

Fanging It

Australian slang saying “ to drive at great speed e.g. He was fanging around”.

The 7th Australian Sports Boat Association National Titles were sailed from the Fremantle Sailing Club with the Fremantle Doctor living up to its reputation with only one race under ten knots and the most in the high teens to gear busting, consistent 25knots.

The fleet consisted of twenty one boats of a range of designs.  2011 winner Brett Whitbread sailed the 7.2m wicked winged machine, Crank, an awesome looking dinghy/keelboat.

Seven vipers made up a big part of the fleet with Rod Beurteaux and Tim Reger considered to have the best chances.  Three Shaw 650’s included last year’s runner up Rees Howell sailing Octopuss and two new VX’s were sailing with their big masthead chutes.

The fleet also included M24’s, T7’s and 7.5’s, SB20 and a GT750.

Day One racing started at about 12 knots and the strength just went up from there in the next two races. Crank had a good day with two wins and Tim Reger on Fang was consistent with two seconds. Rees Howall on the Shaw 650 Octopussy had a first and third.

Day two had only one race - a sixteen mile passage race. Most of the race was around 20 knots and finished in a gear busting, consistent 25 +knots. Crank disappeared into the distance followed by T750Ducks Nuts (Mitch De Vries).  The seven Vipers were having a great race all pushing each other and swapping positions. Gradually the conditions started to take their toll and two Vipers wiped each other out when one didn’t quite make a port/starboard dip. Crank damaged some rigging and was not able to carry a spinnaker for the last two legs. Fang rounded the top mark with a handy lead over the other vipers but with only two downwind legs to go he sheared off the rudder pintle.  Octopussy lost their tackline on their spinnaker and did not carry their spinnaker on the last legs. It was last man standing and Rod Beurteaux came through to win, passing Andrew York’s VX when they ditched after a last leg broach. Four of the top five boats where Viper 640 designs.

Day three saw 20 to 25 knots. Fang had two wins and Rod Beurteaux took out the other race. At the end of the penultimate day, Fang held a one point break on Crank to Octopussy.

Day four saw a pleasant break with a race under ten knots. Rod Beurteaux hit all the right shifts to follow the two T750’s at the first mark and was first on SMS with Octopussy second. Tim Reger had a bad race and finished 8th with Crank in 13th   on SMS.

The second last race of the series was won by Fang with Crank second and Don’t Forget Alice third. All  races were close and again this showed with the winning margin being 1 second. This gave Fang a four point lead with one race remaining.  Crank again took line honours and won the last race on SMS. The Fang crew sailed a great race, securing second place, only 6 seconds behind Crank.  They had taken the title by three points. Octopussy finished third and another Viper, Don’t forget Alice (Rod Beurteaux) finished fourth.

Mitch de Vries The Ducks Nuts      Photo: Perth Sailing Photography

Koombana Bay provided windy conditions and flat waters for the 32 Cherubs at the recent Nationals Photos:  Fiona Lunsmann

51st Cherub Nationals held on Koombana Bay, Bunbury

Kirk Mitchell and Andrew Stephenson from Drummoyne Sailing Club have convincingly won the 51stCherub Nationals, showing that dedication to training pays off. Kirk and Andrew won 4 of the 9 races held at Koombana Bay Sailing Club in Bunbury, Western Australia.

Koombana Bay provided windy conditions and flat water with the breeze most days averaging 20 knots. The bulk of the fleet remained compact with close finishes over the series despite the windy conditions.

Matthew Rhys-Jones and Matthew Hall on The French Tickler won 3 of the heats to come in second place. Experienced crew Trevor Fay and Morgan Frew on Wally came in third position, winning the veteran category, finishing with 1 win and 2 seconds over the series.

The first WA boat was Smurf Crease sailed by Todd McVee and Steve Fryer in fourth position, and they also placed second on handicap. Overall handicap was won by Camel Toe sailed by Aaron Kirkby and Jess Stephenson who showed improvement throughout the series.

The Cadet division for skippers under 18 was taken out by Enough Rope sailed by Nicole Barnes and Jeremy Jones. Pandamonium, sailed by WA crew Brad Luketina and Niko Streiga, was 1 point behind to finish second in the Cadet division and 16th overall.  The Junior division for skippers under the age of 21 was won by Harden Up! but was passed to fellow Drummoyne sailors Lawrence Wakefield and Oliver Jones on Black Pearl. Best placed female skipper was Claire Lunsmann on Alchemy, and best female crew was Felicity Wellman on Almost Famous. The next cherub nationals will be held in South Australia at Wallaroo.



Road to Rio launch for the Australian Sonar Sailing Team

The Australian Sonar Sailing Team consisting of Jonathan Harris, Coach Grant Alderson, Colin Harrison and Russell Boaden have celebrated their selection to the  team after taking out the Sailors of the Year with a Disability Award at the Yachting Australia awards in Sydney late last year.

Their coach, Grant Alderson was also a finalist in the Sports Professional award. 

This award capped off a successful year following their success of a Bronze Medal in the IFDS World Championships in Kinsale, Ireland. 

WA Opis prepare to take on the fleet Jayden Dalton (1200), Joshua Pang (Aurum 644), Jackson Porter (Optimum 1340) and  Axel Fleet (Blue Kahlu 1124)

2014 AIODA International Optimist Australian and Open Championships

The Mornington Yacht Club in Port Phillip Bay, Victoria was noisy and vibrant with nearly 350 excited young sailors including 35 international competitors competing in the AIODA International Optimist Australian and Open Championships held from Saturday 4th January 2014 - Saturday 11th January 2014.

In a fantastic championship talented 12 year old Henry Otto of Middle Harbour Yacht Club sailed a fine regatta in wild and windy conditions to win overall with a net of only 26 points. New Zealanders Lewis Anderson and Craig Keenan took 2nd and 3rd overall for the contingent of strong from across the ditch. 

As hosts to next year’s championships, It is fitting that the Fremantle Sailing Club Optimists have done WA proud with three sailors finishing in the top 11 of the gold fleet – well done to Jayden Dalton (6th), Rome Featherstone (8th), Zachary Littlewood (10th) and Oliver Maverick (11th ) – both Zachary and Oliver were sailing in their first ever National Championships. 

Believe it or Knot sailed by Isabelle Kenny from South of Perth Yacht Club won the Silver Fleet by a wide margin.

30 WA kids attended with the majority competing in their first ever national championships which saw nine of the WA sailors make the Gold Fleet, eight in the Silver Fleet and 2 in the Bronze with the remainder competing in the Green Fleet.

2013 Kiteracing Oceanic Championships lures 43 entrants to Leighton Beach WA

Kiteracing Oceanic Championships – Record Tumbles at the Lightouse to Leighton

The Lighthouse to Leighton race brought the best of the kite racing world to town as the spectacular race was mid December over 19 kilometers. Both local and international kite racing champions tackled the fearsomely fast race that sees speeds of over 50 kms per hour between the two points. With a steady 10 to 14 knots out of the south west, the larger sails were used and despite hitting a patch of weed and having to remount, German ex pat Marvin Baumeister led from the start and crossed the line in a new record time of 23 minutes and 50 seconds.

Following him was the overall winner of the Men’s platinum flight Florian Gruber of Germany. Local kite racer and one of the event organisers, Torvar Mirsky came in third. In the women’s results Marie Desandre Navarre of France was first with countrywoman Ariane Imbert second and Australian Lisa Hickman in at third.  

Third placed Mirsky was awarded the first Marc Sprod medal for the fastest West Australian entrant and said that he was racing well beyond his expectations. “My back leg was burning like hell, but it was awesome. I didn't think I'd be standing on the podium nor have any chance of being near that record."

The finals of the IKA Formula Kite Oceanic Championships in Platinum fleet had Florian Gruber of Germany first, with Oliver Bridge of Great Britain second and former winner Riccardo Leccese of Italy third. Torvar Mirsky was the first Australian at 8th place followed by Ric Black at 9th.

In the women’s finals Polish kite racer Aga Grsymska was first, Ariane Imbert of France was second and Nuna Goma of Spain was third with Lisa Hickman of Australia in fourth place. The Men’s Gold fleet was all Australian with Dale Stanton first followed by fellow clubbie Eneour Puil-Stephan and third Mathew Vandervoort. In the men’s Silver fleet, three Australians came through with Tom Johnson first, followed by Jordan Girdis and Joel Aulich third. 

Adrian Wilson’s Lamotrek &  Matt Dickman’s  new comer  Fifty Four  in the Pot of Gold on 7th December 2013     Photo: John Bird

Pot of Gold and Dash for Cash

It looked like a long day for the Offshore racers when a light zephyr greeted them near the North mole prior to the start of the Round Rotto Race that finished at Hillarys Yacht Club.

Fortunately a south–westerly breeze filled in during the morning and by the time they turned for home it reached 20 knots, prompting Division 1 winner (and fastest) Dom Papaluca in Al Fresco to comment that “he hadn’t been that wet going downwind before”. Endorphin and Enterprise filled the minor placings on IRC handicap, a result that was reversed on YAH handicap. IRC placings were the same as over the line in Division 2: The X Factor, Farrago and Fourth Dimension whilst on YAH Farrago won, ahead of The X Factor and Unhinged. In Division 3 Total Recall won on both IRC and YAH ratings whilst Stimulus Package and Numbers Game made up the numbers on IRC and Without Fear andSynergy on YAH were second and third respectively. Although not first over the line Kraken again proved too good on both IRC and YAH ratings to win the Double Handed race ahead of some stiff competition in Fifty Four (fastest) and Dart Vader.

A small fleet of Division 1 to 4 yachts started together in the Dash for Cash Race run simultaneously with the Offshore racers however their course made it a dash down the coast to Hillarys Yacht Club with only a small beat back to windward. The catamaran Sally Malay made the most of the spinnaker run and was first and fastest in Division 1, Hard Evidence was second and similarly in Division 2 Covert Operation won the tussle with Juni for first and fastest, with Volant and Pandora not far behind.

In Division 3 there was never more than a minute between Bali Rally participant, Comfortably Numb andPerle with the latter taking line honours by 20 secs but beaten soundly on handicap. A very close tussle was fought out between the two East Fremantle yachts in Division 4 with Double Visionvictorious over Brochure Run by 41 secs on handicap. 



Sabres enjoy the solitude of Walpole’s 2013 In the Trees Regatta

Walpole’s’  Regatta In the Trees is Around the Corner

Walpole’s Regatta in the Trees returns on the Labor Day long weekend, the 1st and 2nd March. Last year saw the rejuvenation of this once popular event on the south coast after a twelve year hiatus, masterminded by paraplegic sailor, Jamie Dunross, who made his home in the south coastal town after successfully completing the first unassisted solo circumnavigation of Australia in the S&S34 Spirit of Rockingham.

Last year’s regatta exceeded all expectations.  The whole town was involved in the organisation of the event, the provision of trophies and an appealing social program.  Sailors descended on Walpole from the metropolitan area, the south west and the south coast in a variety of yachts ranging from surf cats to foiling moths to large trailer sailers, while the legendary John Rosser controlled the on-water management.

Foiling moths made headlines by conducting their State Championship at the regatta, charging across the inlet at more than 20 knots, but they were well supported by the Sabre class, surfcats and many off the beach classes. The Moths will again be conducting their State Championship in conjunction with the Walpole Regatta.

John Rosser and Graham White are returning to assist with on-water management and the local Walpole community is on standby to make the regatta another resounding success.  For further information visit www.walpoleyachtclub.com.au


Gary McNally’s Black Betty was the outright winner of Division 1 in Race Week 2013   Photo: Bernie Kaaks

Black Betty Heads East for Festival of Sail



Festival of Sails, organised by Royal Geelong Yacht Club, is to be held from Thursday 23rd until Monday 27th January 2014. Gary McNally and partner in the logistical challenge, Brian McMasters, are trucking the GP42 Black Betty with an escort almost 3,500 kilometers across the Nullarbor Plain from Perth to the Festival of Sails for their first foray into interstate competition.

Black Betty, from the Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club in Perth, will need an extendable semi-trailer and escort for the six day journey, which could mark the start of an extensive eastern seaboard campaign. Click on the  links below to read more.

Unconfirmed reports note that their main competitor, General Lee, is taking a season off - we wonder what is in store for her next year? 

Champagne Sailing for Terry Posma’s Jaffa at 2013 GBYC Race Week     Photo: Bernie Kaaks

Geographe Bay Race Week Revitalised

 A new sponsorship package, a feeder race designed to have boats arrive for the start of the regatta rather than a week beforehand, a social program based around exciting new facilities at The Deck (the marina tavern), and some fresh ideas for sailors make it a very attractive proposition indeed, whether your interest is in racing around the cans, racing in longer events, or just lazily cruising around the tranquil waters of the Bay, this year’s Race Week will have the lot.

Race Week’s social program at the yacht club was not popular with most sailors, so this year’s social events and results will return to the Marina, where a stage has been erected over the water. A lively program includes a fashion parade, a burlesque revue, a formal dinner and casual entertainment.

A new and innovative event to entice non-racing yacht owners to participate is a Rally Division which was added to this year’s program.  Operating much like an old style car rally, yachts will have the whole week of the regatta to cruise up and down Geographe Bay as they please, stopping at various points for vital information, with opportunities to stop along the way to sample restaurants, wineries and so on.

Geographe Bay Yacht Club will manage on-water activities with the assistance of local Sea Rescue units, together with resources from the YWA offshore race management team and Royal Perth Yacht Club. The demands of running a regatta which regularly draws more than 100 yachts has clearly stretched the volunteers at Geographe Bay Yacht Club to breaking point, leading to a suggestion that the regatta should become a biennial event, but Regatta Chairman Nigel Chesterfield-Evans said: “The GBYC has been punching well above its weight for 10 years now and changes are needed to ensure the future of the event.” He confirmed this week that the regatta will continue to be an annual event, with greater involvement by the Port Geographe Marina and support from metropolitan yacht clubs.

“We are absolutely committed to ensuring the continuing success of Geographe Bay Race Week,” Bob Godridge promised. “From 2015 onwards we will play a leading role in the organisation of the regatta, with a guarantee that Geographe Bay Yacht Club will continue to benefit.”

Competing yachts from around the State and even interstate will welcome the news that the regatta will continue as an annual event.  For many, it is already the centrepiece of their planning for the summer.

For further information visit http://www.gbyc.com.au/race-week.html


Luke Elliott’s Training Camps, World Championships and Camel Rides

At the end of October I made my third and final trip for 2013. I headed for Sydney for a training camp with the best Laser sailors in Australia before flying out for my first ever open World Championships in Oman. I had just finished a tough base level training block in Perth.  

The camp started with about 11 Lasers which grew to 14 with 8 qualifying for the Worlds. We had a great range of conditions but were specifically targeting the lightest air possible to match the expected conditions of Oman. The camp was run like a regatta with set courses and results being recorded by our coach Michael Blackburn. I finished 5th overall and felt confident. A few days later I was headed for the Middle East and after a couple of nightmare connections I arrived in Muscat Oman, at the same time as the rest of the Aussie team.

I’ll admit I loved Oman before I had even stepped into the hotel. Coming from someone who has spent several months sleeping in a van while competing, I’m probably exaggerating the luxury of the resort we stayed in, but it truly did look like something out of a postcard. A small oasis surrounded by sand and hot desert. Full on buffets, infinity pools next to the warm waters of the Omani Gulf and lush grass and trees made up the back drop of two impressive white marble hotel buildings. It truly was paradise. We spent ten days as a squad training before the event.  A warm 30 degrees, the water hovering at just below that and the routine light sea breezes made for a productive training environment. The training groups got bigger and bigger and the atmosphere more and more tense between the sailors.

17th  November 2013 Laser World Championships. Day One I was in the first fleet starting that day. The wind was soft but quickly built to a lumpy 15 knots. Perfect - everyone was pushing the limit and after 3 general recalls we were away. My pace was good, I was having fun, I rounded the top mark 4th, moved into 3rd on the run, just behind two of the best laser sailors in the world and stayed there. It was the most amazing race of my life. I couldn’t believe I had started my Worlds like that. The next race was also amazing: 7th to the top mark, a close 6th at the bottom but the 20 minute beats had eaten into my energy and I missed a crucial shift on the left to place me in 13th and 11th overall and the second Australian.

The event continued with a range of conditions mostly under the 10 knot range. In my qualifying series I was 3rd Aussie after 8 races and 30th overall moving into the Gold Fleet finals series. The final 3 days of racing however were some of the toughest I have faced. I had never raced in such a cut throat environment and really struggled to get a good start. We only managed 4 out of the 6 races due to light winds but I learnt more from them than any other racing.  I finished the regatta 56th overall and the 4thAustralian.  

Two days later I flew to Melbourne for the ISAF Sailing World Cup in Sandringham. Boosted by my result at the Worlds I wanted to capitalize on what I had learnt in Oman. I had a few days of training and settling  in with roommate, Tristan Brown before racing started.  Like the Worlds I started strong leading the entire first race until the last part of the second beat where World No. 1 Tom Burton just got past me to clinch the race. Conditions were trying throughout the week and consistency was hard.  I had a reasonable regatta and was a close 5th coming into the medal race but not only did I finish last in the double points race but my closet rivals finished at the front. I finished 9th overall.

I returned to Melbourne for the Australian Laser Nationals, staying with Brad Utting and Tristan Brown. The Regatta was fun but I never got my rhythm going and battled throughout the week. Luckily I had a solid last day and somehow slipped into 4th overall and 3rd Australian. I then coached the FSC Optimists at their nationals. Back in Perth having left at the end of October, I am now reflecting on the amazing year I have had and am looking forward to 2014.


Yachting WA News

Yachting WA News

04/12/2013, Western Australia, Yachting, Yachting WA, Article # 1274986

2013 Monohull Cock of the Swan Scott Sharpe with YWA President, Denys Pearce

Champagne Sailing for 50th Anniversary of Cock of Swan Regatta

In a steady 12 to 15 knots out of the west south west, the combination of foilers, skiffs and catamarans were in for champagne sailing and the host club Perth Dinghy Sailing Club and race officer Tom Burt were ready to go.

With the 49ers away over east for Sail Melbourne, the field was open and the International Moths cleared the fleet with ease. Despite the Moth invasion, the 14’s fleet was quick and most managed to get ahead of the 18 footers and stay there.   A lone wind surfer, Sean Carr worked very hard to get around the course and freely admitted to being exhausted by the end of the day, logging up over 2 hours of hanging on to a sail along the course.

The Tornados and the 18’s were in fine fettle and roundings at Lucky-Smith made for an exhilarating hoist as they got their kites up and steadied for the downwind run. A surprise visitor was Whip it, a Fire Fly 850 catamaran from Nedlands Yacht Club who came out to show her down wind speed under an asymmetric.

The 2013 Cock of the Swan is Moth sailor Scott Sharpe (Zhik) – monohull.

The 2013 Cock of the Swan is Tornado Britz helmed by Paul Raymond and crewed by Steven Smith.  

Instigated by Mr Geoffrey Cohen in 1953 as a result of animated bar discussion as to who was the fastest yacht on the Swan River, two identical perpetual trophies were moulded and are presented annually by Yachting WA.

The distinct Cockerel  trophies were presented by Yachting WA President Denys Pearce and will record the current winners who are new to the prestigious Cock of the Swan Winners Circle.

2013 Multihull Cocks of the Swan presented to Steven Smith and Paul Raymond by YWA President, Denys Pearce


Front L to R:  Greg Hancock MOFSC, Paul Ward SOPYC, Bob Kucera FSC, Peter Stallwood FSC President  Ray O’Byrne EFYC,  Graham Croft SYC, Clive Rosser PFSYC, Rod McGregor PDSC, Kevin Owens FSC, David Locke, SOPYC, Basil Twine RFBYC, Roy Richards SOPYC, Tom Burt PDSC, Felix Sainsbury EFYC, Peter Galvin TCYC

Middle:  Brian Wales FSC, Don Davies PFSYC, Rod Sloss PDSC, Don Devine PDSC, Ken Beurteaux EFYC, Norm Beurteaux FSC, John Gorham JBYC, Peter Marshall EFYC, Garry Webb FSC, Rick Oswald MOFSC, Greg Thomas MOFSC, Ann Santry SCYC, Ken Santry SCYC

Back Leslie Devine PDSC, Ray Cowie MBYC, Brad Devine, PDSC, Ian Meiklejohn GBYC, Gary Kerman PDSC, Ken Dean GBYC,  Kerry Lewis HYC, Robert Mason ORSSC, Brent Griffiths HYC, Frank Dalglish SOPYC, Phil Gallagher ORSSC, Ted Court RIYC, Maurice Cooper SOPYC, Ray Rudge EFYC, Tony Sheehan ORSSC, Brian Kerman PDSC, Lance Rock MOFSC, Don Nickels PDSC, Merv Holst SOPYC.

WA Commodores Mark Time

In a first ever record of WA past and present Commodores, WA Commodores marked time for a photo call to record 30 years of the Commodores Association of WA.

The Commodores Association of WA met for their Annual General Meeting at the Fremantle Sailing Club on the 24th November 2013. This was followed by a formal dinner to celebrate the first meeting of Commodores which set in progress the formation of the Association thirty years ago on 9th December 1983.

At that inaugural meeting 28 Commodores, current and past, met to consider the proposal put forward by the then Commodore of Mounts Bay Sailing Club, Kevin Owens and John Steffanoni destined to follow Kevin as Commodore of Mounts Bay. There were 34 apologies demonstrating a strong interest in the concept. The objectives formulated at that meeting largely remain in place today. In 1984 there were 41 inaugural financial members.

The recent dinner was attended by 47 Commodores, both current and past, drawn from yacht and sailing Clubs across Western Australia, but predominantly from the local metropolitan clubs. The current financial membership of the association is 75.

Attending this anniversary dinner were Greg Hancock MOFSC, Paul Ward SoPYC and Bob Kucera FSC as the current Commodores of their respective Clubs, and Brent Griffiths HYC, Frank Dalglish SOPYC and Brad Devine PDSC as the Immediate Past Commodores of their respective Clubs.

Also attending were Life Member Kevin Owens FSC, Felix Sainsbury EFYC, Don Davies PFSYC, Ken Beurteaux EFYC, Norm Beurteaux FSC and Rod Sloss PDSC who were inaugural financial members from 1984.

Kevin Owens First President of the Commodores Association 1984, addressed the dinner on the early days of the Association with Peter Stallwood presenting his report for 2013 to the Annual General Meeting.  Kevin Owens and Host Club Commodore Bob Kucera of Fremantle Sailing Club cut the anniversary cake at the dinner following the AGM.

Any Commodores wishing to join should contact Peter Stallwood.

Kevin Owens and Bob Kucera cut the celebratory cake


Steel de Breeze in Bali 2013

Steel de Breeze Impresses at Raja Muda Selangor International Regatta 2013

Conducted by the Royal Selangor Yacht Club the Raja Muda Selangor International Regatta held from 15th - 23rd November 2013 was a huge success for WA Sailors.

After  the successful Wonderful Indonesia Fremantle to Bali Yacht Race and Rally earlier this year, Brian and Lynn De Breeze sailed the myriad islands of the Indonesian archipelago in the company of other entrants. At the conclusion of the rally they sailed to Singapore where they left their yacht  Steele de Breeze in safe care so as to resume at their leisure, regattas and sailing within the Asian region.  

Early in November  Steele de Breeze was collected and sailed up to Port Klang, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia  in readiness for the Raja Muda Yacht Rally. Brian and Lyn along with their crew removed as much of the cruising equipment off the boat as possible to be competitive with the full racing rig boats.  The cruising equipment was then trucked to the next stop.

Four other South of Perth Yacht Club members joined Brian and Lynn to compete in the rally; Phil &  Kate Lammonby and Graham & Heather Monkhouse.

The Raja Muda Selangor International Regatta is a challenging offshore sailing race organised every year by the Royal Selangor Yacht Club in association with the RORC.

It consists of three overnight passage races, 260 miles in total, plus 3 days of harbour racing in Penang and Langkawi.  Additionally there is an attractive social element with regatta dinners almost every night, a rickshaw race and lots of opportunities to socialise.  The onshore activities are just as demanding as the sailing.

Phil Lammonby reported:  The first race from Port Klang to Pangkor some 80 plus sea miles.  Pangkor Island is 8 square km and inhabited by nearly 25 thousand people, mainly fishermen.  Departing at 2pm, winds were favourable during the night except for once when they had to anchor for 1 hour or be pushed backwards with the tide.  Fujun,  one of the  earlier Ichiban yachts were several miles away, however when nearing the finishing line at 04:20hours a shadow of another yacht appeared to our starboard side. It was Fujun. The wind had dropped to a whisper and it was a tussle to the finish withFujun winning by 54 seconds.

The next Leg was from Pangkor to Penang, again a passage of 80 miles with the same result, Fujunfollowed by Steele de Breeze.   In Penang a harbour race was conducted around the cans where we came 3rd to Fujun and  Sea Bass. The evening entertainment was something to be seen and lots of fun.

The third leg from Penang to Langkawi around 54 miles again 2nd across the line but third on IRC. A further two around the cans races were held in the bay with a 3rd   and 2nd across the line.

All other yachts were impressed with the “cruising couples” (as we were named) performances finishing 3rd overall in our division on IRC. The final presentation night went well into the early hours of the morning and was the culmination of another very successful Rally.

The event attracts a variety of yachts from top class IRC1 racers to slow classic cruisers dating back over 100 years, all of whom had to cope with unpredictable weather and changing tactics during the nine day mix of races past tropical islands and magnificent scenery.

Steele de Breeze has moved on to Phuket, Thailand to compete in The Phuket King's Cup Regatta starting 2nd December 2013 where three other South of Perth Yacht Club Members will be joining the boat.



The Kiteracing Oceanic Championships at Leighton Beach

Some of the world's most daring kiteracers will be in Perth for the Kiteracing Oceanic Championships at Leighton Beach from 11 to 15 December 2014.

Many competitors will be coming directly from the IKA 2013 World Course Racing Championship held a fortnight ago in China where WA Race Officers Andy Curnow (Mounts Bay Sailing Club)  supported by John and Christina Heydon ( South of  Perth Yacht Club) officiated preparatory to the Perth event. The championships held at Boao on the east coast of Hainan Island were the first Kiteracing world championships for China and attracted over 100 entrants from around the world.

Fourteen Australians participated in China including three WA’s racers, Dale Stanton, Jonathan Keys and Eneour Puill-Stephan.

Impressed with what they experienced in China John Heydon said “Every venue has something different to offer and China put on an excellent show which we are keen to emulate or even better in WA.” 

“A number of the competitors are travelling on to Perth and will I think, be highly impressed with the organisation of the Leighton Beach Championships” .

Versatile WA sailor/Kiteracer Torvar Mirsky spoke this week of the building excitement for the event reporting that the test event held at Leighton Beach on  Sunday 1st December for competitors and Race Officials ran smoothly which  augurs well for an excellent event.

Fifteen WA entrants have been prepped with training from UK’s Steph Bridge (4 times World Kiterace Champion) and Olly Bridge (European Mens Race Champion and World Youth Champion).

The Warren Jones Foundation have provided race gear and presented a Kiteracing Junior Training Camp to give a group of talented amateur water sports people access to training by World Champions Steph and Olly Bridge. The WA juniors include Eamon Robertshaw, Sam Gilmour, Paris Stowell, Patrick Vos, Mani Bisschops, Rex Edwards and Tom Johnson.

Spectators will see competitors tackle a marked course close to the water's edge, watch spectacular jumps as part of the Freestyle Jam, plus enjoy awesome entertainment and festivities with a beach party vibe.

If you’re into action sports and love the beach, the Kiteracing Oceanic Championships at Leighton Beach, Fremantle is the place to be from 10 to 15 December 2013.

For more information visit http://kiteoceanics.com  or the event Facebook page.


Photo: Icarus Kiteracing Media



Sabre Challenge Draws Nigh at PDSC Nationals

Scarce as hen’s teeth but where there is a will there’s a way and Chris Holyday wasted no time in snapping up the rare commodity on the Perth market in time for the Sabre Nationals to be held at Perth Dinghy Sailing Club in December.  Maylands Yacht Club has joined the stampede of Clubs adopting the popular single handed Sabre dinghy.  Chris will keep his small trimaran which he sails from Maylands but will hop onto his newly acquired timber Sabre which is already cutting a flash of excitement at Maylands.

Not only has the prospect of a WA National Championship created the scarcity of boats;  the Sabres are said to be one of the fastest-growing classes in Australia. Why? In a nutshell the main reasons are affordability, no crewing problems, easy to transport (minimum weight of boat only 41kg), easy to rig, easy to launch and easy to sail.  In WA four Clubs have adopted the class which started at Perth Dinghy Sailing Club and expanded to East Fremantle Yacht Club with The Cruising Yacht Club Rockingham and Maylands Yacht Club the new comers.

The nationals are shaping up to be a huge success with 75 boats expected.  Most visitors are coming from Victoria including veteran sailor and notable local identity, Harold Medd.

Victorian Harold has thrown a challenge to his WA teenage grandson Oliver as to who can outsail who.  Harold grew up in the north of England where sailing clubs were few and far between and you didn’t just jump in the car and drive 60 miles to the ocean.  Not many people had cars anyway.  So, he built model boats and imagined being in them. 

After university, marriage and the arrival of children he started  real sailing aged in his 30’s with his three sons crewing for him.  It was not long before they surpassed him and he became the occasional crew.  Immigrating to Australia he sailed 505s at Black Rock, Victoria before a stint in big boats and Etchells and then, he found the Sabre!

Harold said “It’s a great little boat very sensitive and responsive to good sailing.  Now in my mid 70’s I can still compete in 25 knots and big waves so it’s a great boat for me.  I even won the over 70’s division in the Vic State titles two years in a row because it was strong wind”.

Meanwhile young Oliver in WA commenced sailing at Mounts Bay in Mudlarks before going on to O’pen Bics where he has proved himself with a 3rd in the Bic Nationals and 2nd in the States.

May the strongest man take up the Sabre in this challenge which will be sailed from 29th December 2013 to 4th January 2014 at Perth Dinghy Sailing Club.

For further information contact President Brian Jones on 0438 516 324 or sabreswa1@iprimus.com.auor www.sabre.org.au


Flying Ant State Team 2013    Front L-R Freyja Carlberg, JJ Dillon, Jayden Havelberg, Dean Cowan   

Rear: Holly Hunt, Tahlia Aitkenhead, Jeremy Kaputin, Aaron Kaputin, Dale Brett, Chad Cowan, Caelin Winchcombe & John Clements


Flying Ant State Team Selected

Interesting wind conditions produced some great competition at the Flying Ant State Selections held at The Cruising Yacht Club (Rockingham) on the 23rd/24th November 2013. The first two races were light and shifty with course changes of up to 90 degrees mid race creating some new challenges for many of the sailors when working out the altered top mark positions. However the fleet was up to the challenge and some close racing followed.

The afternoon saw Mangels Bay filled with TCYC’s regular fleet along with the RFBYC’s Dolphin Race (Fremantle to Rockingham) keelboats and some stiff competition amongst the Ants.

Last year’s national champions Dale Brett and Jayden Havelberg on Rhinochaser fought it out with MBSC’s all girl team, Holly Hunt and Freyja Carlberg on Phantom, Dunsborough Bay/TCYC combination of Caelin Winchcombe and John Clements in Predator and DBYC’s Chad and Dean Cowan in The Edgeputting on the pressure.

Sunday saw the breeze pick up and a win to Phantom took the girls to the front in race 5. With just one point between first and second it all came down to the last race and a potential tie and count-back decision. However, gusty winds and a more experienced team saw Rhinochaser take the last race in style with a strong gust capsizing Phantom who nevertheless retained their second place overall.

Congratulations to the 2013/14 Flying Ant State Team:

Dale Brett & Jayden Havelberg               Rhinochaser

Holly Hunt & Freyja Carlberg                        Phantom

Caelin Winchcombe & John Clements        Predator

Chad Cowan & Dean Cowan                         The Edge

Aaron Kaputin & JJ Dillon                             Equaliser

Jeremy Kaputin & Tahlia Aitkenhead      Cool Running

Andrew Buchan and Alex Crafts             Hard Yakka


Caelin Winchcombe & John Clements  (Predator) chase champions Dale Brett & Jayden Havelberg (Rhinochaser)

Juniors Flourish at Dunsborough Bay

Following Discover Sailing Day 13 new juniors attended the first day of Sailing Instruction, which this season has seen any spare places quickly filled by local youngsters keen to get a spot amongst Kids Captain Commy Pete’s Pirate Group -  the fun DBYC junior sector.  Rear Commodore Nick and Peter are actively behind this year’s sailing ensuring the juniors continue to flourish.

Newly trained young sail coaches Dean & Chad Cowan and Morgan Flower have been busy putting their skills into practice mentoring and training the new apprentice pirates.

DBYC and GBYC sailors are talking the opportunity to sail at each other’s club following an informal agreement between respective the respective Commodores and it is hoped that this will become a formal agreement between the two clubs to promote sailing within Geographe Bay.

Last  weekend three Dunsborough juniors attended the WA Flying Ant State Selections where State shirts were up for grabs with the first 6 boats securing positions in the team. Caelin Winchcombe skippered for John Clements from TCYC in Predator finishing in 3rd place. Chad and Dean Cowan sailed The Edge and finished in 4th position. All 3 boys are now members of the 2013/14 State Team and will be representing WA in Port Melbourne in January.

The final DBYC sailing event for the year is on Sunday 22nd Dec with the “Dash for Cash” for juniors and The Quindalup Cup race with a Christmas Wardroom that evening for all. BYO nibblies to share.

DBYC Members and friends pass on their best wishes to Past Commodore Joan Embry who is at present unwell, wishing her a speedy recovery. Joan and Mark are valued members of DBYC and the club is poorer for their absence. 


2013 Mens Laser Worlds in Oman

Two top ten finishes for the Australian Sailing Team at the Laser Men’s 2013 World Sailing Championships in Oman.

Both ISAF world number seven Matthew Wearn of WA and  ISAF world number one Tom Burton of NSW had something to prove on the last day of the championships in Oman. Wearne managed to finish for the first time in the top 10 of a major Laser World Championships confirming his position in the Australian Sailing Team and Burton took 9th spot just ahead of Wearne.

The Championship was won by 5 times Olympian and double Olympic champion Brazilian Robert Scheidt winning his 9th World Champion title on his return from the Star class yachts. Pavlos Kontides from Cyprus came second and Phillip Buhl of Germany took third. 

Burton came to the event wanting to win and had high hopes of this; unfortunately it didn’t go the way he planned. “It has been nearly six months since I raced at full competition level and it showed a little with some of the mistakes I was making although it was a really tricky event”, he said at an interview after the racing. “My expectations and goals were to at least beat what I did last year which was fifth position.  I wasn’t far off in the end but in reality I was well off the pace of the leaders.  The top six were at a different level and seemed to do everything right. On a positive note, I strive to reach that level.  In the Laser fleet it doesn’t take much for the top guys to look really good.  I know I can repeat what I was doing this year and that was being in contention to win at most events.”  

The race week in Oman saw a mixture of results for the Australians with Ashley Brunning of NSW 30th, Queenslanders Ryan Palk 57th and Jared West 59th and W.A. sailor Luke Elliot 56th. Silver fleet Australian competitors were Victorian Jeremy O’Connell 1st and Mitchell Kennedy of QLD 8th.

Most of the Australian contenders will meet again at Sail Melbourne next week. 


Knee Deep            Photo: Perth Sailing Photography

69th Sydney Hobart Yacht Race

Seemingly out of the blue, a year before next year’s milestone 70th race run by the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia (CYCA), a fleet including five 100-foot super maxis, three 80-footers, 15 70-footers and 22 overseas boats has risen to the challenge for the 69th edition of the race.

All the big names are there and this year the Around the World Clippers will incorporate the Sydney Hobart Race as a leg in their ocean venture.

Two Western Australian entries are signed up for this year’s race; Knee Deep, a Farr 49 skippered and owned by Phil Childs of Hillarys Yacht Club  with Russell Balding as navigator and a crew of C. Saxon, D. Armstrong, J. Chaston, J. Delfos, J. Alp, S. Hartley, W. Koolhof, P. Thomson, C. Campbell, J. McMullan and Jamie Weedon.  Most of the crew are veterans of one or more Sydney Hobarts.

The second WA boat is Fremantle Sailing Clubs’ Black Adder, a Sigma 41 owned by James Clayton and crewed by Phil Washington, Bill McLeod and Charlie Meecham.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has endorsed an enthusiastic challenge by wounded, injured and ill Defence personnel crewing for the first time in the Sydney Hobart Yacht Race. 

The Prime Minister joined the crew and supporters at Darling Harbour, Sydney for the official naming of the Volvo Ocean 60 Spirit of Mateship.  The yacht was bought by RSL (Queensland Branch) to provide sailing rehabilitation programs for wounded, injured and ill Defence Force personnel through the charitable organisation Mates4Mates. 

Mates4Mates COO Michael Quinn said the Sydney Hobart challenge was a great opportunity for the crew to develop the skills and fortitude needed to recover from physical, emotional and psychosocial issues unique to those who have served in the military. 

A fleet of 95, said to be the strongest in years, will assemble in Sydney Harbour on 26 December 2013, their aim to knock Bob Oatley’s Wild Oats XI from the top of its perch in the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race.


Numbers Game Under Spinnaker   Photo: Perth Sailing Photography

Pods of Dolphins Laud Rockingham Dolphin Race

On Saturday light and variable winds allowed for pleasant sailing down to Rockingham with pods of dolphins living up to the race name, joining the mariners.

The weekend of 23rd / 24th  November saw the annual Rockingham Regatta hosted by Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club and The Cruising Yacht Club, Rockingham  encompass the Dolphin Race and Gordon Craig Race. Both of the longer races were preceded by windward leeward races.

The evening post race party was held in fine style with cold beers dropped onto the boats at their moorings in Rockingham. Sunday dawned with the windward leeward races held in a 13 knot south westerly in front of the club house and a magnificent display of spinnaker work and upwind beats in close proximity.

The Gordon Craig started in strengthening breezes of 15 to 20 knots swinging into the west with the different course fleets converging onto a run down Gage Roads with squally wet conditions and well over 20 knots providing a quick run to the finish line at South Mole.

The results were conclusive with Gary McNally’s Black Betty taking IRC and YAH in Division I and the honours being shared in Division Two with Hoodoo Man and Fourth Dimension taking the Division II  IRC and YAH respectively. Division III had Eric Gath’s Stimulus Package in first on IRC and Numbers Gametaking 1st on YAH.  In the double handed division Lamotrek took both IRC and YAH with the windward leeward races not being sailed by the double handed boats.


Peter Sorensens' Fujin at 2013 Phuket Race Week 

27th Phuket King’s Cup Regatta

Recognised throughout the eastern hemisphere as the premier sailing event of its kind, the Phuket King’s Cup Regatta puts on a spectacular display of the finest sailing talent across keelboats, multihulls, dinghies and windsurfers with entrants from  Australia, Thailand, New Zealand, Monaco, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, China, Russia, Germany, United Kingdom, France, Spain and Finland.

After the cancellation due to the freak storm that hit Cape Panwa on Saturday the dinghy racing for 42 entrants in Opis, Lasers and Toppers resumed on Sunday in a light winds.

The Regatta held annually during the first week of December to celebrate the birthday of His Majesty the King of Thailand, kicked off with one of its largest ever fleet of keelboats; 105 entries competing over a newly expanded range of 15 individual classes.

With the weather gods smiling, moderate seas and north-easterlies around 10-knots. early leaders in the larger boats appeared in the form of Australia, Japan, Russia and host country, Thailand, racking up multiple wins in their respective divisions. 
Leading Aussie is Ray Roberts who has won almost every regatta in the Asian-Pacific region, at one time or another.

In IRC 2 Peter Sorensen’s Fujin team came back strongly to take the wins on day two and three.

WA’s Steel de Breeze owned and skippered by Brian de Vries and his crew from South of Perth Yacht Club is holding his own in IRC 2 with a 6th, 4th and 5th

For further information or to see results to date visit: http://www.kingscup.com/results.cfm


Enjoy a Little Piece of History with the Wooden Boat Race and Rally for all Vintage Boats

It’s on again – that fantastic spectacle of wonderfully elegant boats of a bygone era, lovingly maintained and restored by their owners and proudly displayed for all to admire on the Swan River.

The popular Wooden Boat Race and Rally is being run by the H28 fleet at South of Perth Yacht Club on Saturday 11th January 2014. It will take its usual format of a box start for the divisions of wooden sailing boats.

Wooden power boats and cruising/ sailing craft that wish to join the fleet as observers are more than welcome and their presence will add weight to the pleasure of the Wooden Boat Race and Rally.

The day will start with lunch on the Quarterdeck deck for those who are interested and a briefing in Archie's Bar shortly before racing commences. The courses will be kept simple and not too demanding for the boats and their skippers and afterwards there will be the obligatory social barbecue and presentation of results in Archie's Bar for the skippers and crews.

Visitors are welcome and there may be the opportunity afforded by some of the power boats to accept spectators onboard however, for safety reasons, spectators must arrange a prior booking with the H28 group.  

For further information contact Glen Stanley 9364 3354 

Moth State Championships Walpole In the Trees Regatta 2013   Photo: Bernie Kaaks

Moths Again Take Centre Stage at 2014 Walpole In the Trees Regatta 

New challenges for a bunch of talented and energetic Moth sailors at the 2014 State Championships to be held conjunctively with Walpole in the Trees Regatta.

Again taking centre stage the Moth sailors will fly through the trees with shining foilers glistening as the sunlight catches their super quick actions – a spectacle unmatched by any other sail craft.

Warmly welcomed by the Walpole community, last year the fleet stayed at the caravan park which provided ample time to socialise and provided a convenient walk to the rigging area. Sailing conditions were perfect with 13 to 17knot winds and flat waters surrounded by magnificent scenery. Tom Johnson proved to be the fastest and gained an early clear lead – can he repeat this in 2014? Will Scott Sharpe in his brand new boat take the silverware, will Steve Thomas or Max Puttman do the chasing? 

Locals are again throwing their support behind the event which sees Walpole turned into a festival for the long March weekend.  The carnival atmosphere brings down many of the city sailors, some come to compete whilst others merely want to escape the rat race for the long weekend.

It is anticipated that the regatta will attract a larger following than last year and early planning is well underway to ensure the success of the 2014 event.  Class Associations planning to hold their State Championships or a heat/s of thereof should be liaising with Walpole Yacht Club now and sailors will be asked to register their entries on the website to facilitate arrangements. 

What makes the Walpole In the Trees Regatta so special is that you are sailing in the trees, or at least amongst them and in one of the Top 10 sailing locations in the World.  The Walpole Yacht Club is the only club in Australia situated in the middle of a National Park with landlord and major stakeholder, the Department of Conservation fully supporting the event.

For further information on Moth Sailing visit: http://www.moth.asn.au/  For further information on 2014 Walpole In the Trees Regatta visit: http://www.walpoleyachtclub.com.au/ or contact Events Manager Jamie Dunross Ph: 0428 760122  regatta@walpole.com.au  



Clipper Race 5 Start – Albany Western Australia   Photo: Clipper Ventures Plc

Clipper Drama at Race 5 Start from Albany to Sydney

Following a Parade of Sail and flyover, GREAT Britain was first over the start line, followed by Derry~Londonderry~Doire and Qingdao in third position as racing started for Race 5 from Albany, Western Australia today bound for Sydney, a distance of 2150 miles.

The twelve 70-foot Clipper yachts carrying more than 300 international crew sailing away from the Albany Marina as part of the 2013 Clipper Round the World Yacht Race was awesome for the Albany residents and visitors who flocked to every vantage point to farewell the fleet as it started in King George Sound.

However, following the start, a racing incident was reported between PSP Logistics (the only Australian skippered team) and GREAT Britain. Despite there being no injuries, both yachts returned to port for a full damage assessment. GREAT Britain lost her bowsprit while PSP Logistics suffered damage to a wheel and rails on the port side towards the stern. This morning GREAT Britain has resumed racing but PSP Logistics is still in port.

Unbelievably, after 5000 miles and 21 days of epic ocean racing between Cape Town and Albany, just one mile or so separated first and second in the last leg of the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race.  Now, at the start of the Albany to Sydney Race skippers may push their boats harder and faster to cover the shorter distance and to maximise the stop over opportunity to ready themselves in Sydney for the next leg which is conjunctive with the Sydney to Hobart Race.

The fleet is due into Sydney between 12 and 14 December. The fleet will berth at the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia in Rushcutter’s Bay. Following a stopover, the fleet will then compete in the world famous Rolex Sydney Hobart Race, followed by racing to Brisbane, Singapore, China, San Francisco, Panama, Jamaica, New York, Derry Londonderry and Dan Helder in the Netherlands before returning to London’s St Katharine Docks for Race Finish in July 2014.

To follow the race visit  https://www.clipperroundtheworld.com


Latest News From Yachting Western Australia

Latest News From Yachting Western Australia

19/11/2013, Western Australia, Yachting, Yachting WA, Article # 1134091

 Latest News From Yachting Western Australia

YWA President Denys Pearce, Vice President Mark Fitzhardinge, Board Member Jim Suffield and WAIS Coach Belinda Stowell at the State Team Announcement


Best Bib and Tucker as YWA Sailing Team Prepares for Podium at Youth Champs

The upcoming Australian Youth Championships in Melbourne will see Stage I of the exciting revival of the Yachting WA Sailing Team.  The team announced at the October 2013 WA State Youth Championships in Rockingham comprises top sailors over three classes 420s, Lasers and 29ers.  These recognized youth classes are deemed suitable feeder classes for the program.

The program has been developed to be an underpinning program to WAIS.  Westsail, although a very successful program in itself which has been running for 34 years, is not the end of the road for our inspiring young athletes to move from this level into the West Australian Institute of Sport (WAIS) program and beyond.

When the YWAST program is fully rolled out in 2014, it will also include the YWA Development Squad (YWADS), which will be made up of sailors with potential in the sport.  The top athletes from the State Development Squad may be selected into the YWA Sailing Team (YWAST), and will be supported at national events.

It is also recognises that not all sailors want to compete at the highest level at these events, some of these young people simply compete at events such as the Australian Youth Championships for the experience and this program will also support those athletes by means on a tee-shirt and sailing bib.

All Western Australian sailors who are going to the Australian Youth Championships will proudly wear the shirt and bib branded with the YWA logo whilst the YWAST sailors will wear a Gill supplied bib branded with the YWA Sate Team logo.  Regardless of their sailing level and abilities all athletes will be competing as part of WA Sailing and we wish them all the very best as they take to the water from 6th to 10th January 2014.

This year the athletes selected in their chosen class are as follows:

Laser 4.7 - No sailors selected in 2013

Laser Radial (8) - Chris Charlwood, Marcus Fisk, Lachy Gilham, Richard Maher, Connor Nicholas, James Stewart, Sam Tennent and Alastair Young

420 (6) -  Nia Jerwood & Lisa Smith, Will Boulden & Nick Gale and Emerson Carlberg & Lachy Gilmour (currently in WAIS Program)

29er (7) - Max Guidice & Hayden Hunt, Dominic Mann,  Liam Seagreen, Alicia Spencer & Jake Dennison and Shannon Wright.


A close fleet of Middle Island Hong Kong

Flying Fifteen Worlds in Hong Kong Tailed by Typhoon

Flying Fifteen sailors scrambled back to Australia filled with horror at the winds, rains and coastal storm surges of Typhoon Haiyan which transformed neighborhoods in nearby Philipinnes into little more than debris.

Downgraded to a tropical storm as it entered southern China, Typhoon Haiyan spared the Flying Fifteen World Championships in Hong Kong which ended with medium-heavy breezes and massive swells but relief as the sailors picked up their trophies and packed their boats.

Hosted by Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club, the sailing took place from their Middle Island facility based on the south side of Hong Kong island whilst the social events and prize giving was held at the main clubhouse at Kellett Island in Causeway Bay.

Crossing one of the busiest shipping channels in the world to get to the race course positioned out towards the South China Sea was no mean feat, often involving more than an hour’s sail.

The Western Australian sailing contingent finished with two teams on the podium having battled tough competition from the British.  Nick and Janet Jerwood (Ineffable) have taken a well earned second to the World Champions Graham Vials and Chris Turner (Foof) of GBR followed by Grant Alderson and Dean McAullay (El Toro) in third. The top three podium placings remained constant for both the Hong Kong Nationals (Pre-worlds) and the Worlds.  During the second week several sailors  contracted a severe flu like virus.  Grant Alderson was literally knocked to the bottom of his boat where he spent much of the second week, rallying from his ‘sick bed’ only to skipper during the actual races. Crew Dean got the boat out to the course and back finally succumbing to the illness himself by regattas end.

The strong Australian contingent of sixteen boats comprised twelve boats from WA representing  Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club, South of Perth Yacht Club, Esperance Bay Yacht Club and Princess Royal Sailing Club.

Sharing the top ten placings equally with the Brits, Victorians Matt Owen and Andrew Reed (The Wife’s Fault) took fifth place with Glamour Boys Greg Leaversuch and Pete Barblett in 9th and Chris Paterson and Rupert Leslie on Storyteller sailing themselves into 10th spot. The Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club ran an excellent regatta doing a fantastic job both on and off the water, which could prove a hard act for the next hosts in Hyeres, France.


Australian Contingent at Flying 15s Worlds in Hong Kong

YWA’s Tony Strickland retires with recognition from Department of Transport’s Troy Easter

Safer Boating Appreciation for Tony’s RST Dedication

Tony Strickland of Yachting WA was recently awarded a Certificate of Appreciation from the Department of Transport for his contribution to the success of the Recreational Skippers Ticket (RST) program and in providing a safer boating community in Western Australia.

Troy Easter from the Department of Transport made the presentation recently upon Tony’s retirement from Yachting WA. Tony joined Yachting WA in January 2005 and has worked tirelessly to accredit numerous RST Assessors in WA for the delivery of the RST.

Developed by the Department of Transport, the agency for marine safety in WA, the RST ensures that people in charge of recreational vessels have the minimum skills and knowledge to protect themselves, their possessions, and to share the waterways safely with others.

With the onset of the warm weather it is a timely reminder of the need for safety on and off the water.

There is no better time than NOW to check and make safe your equipment, familiarise yourself with the waterways, the regulations and emergency preventions and procedures.

For RST assessment and information  visit www.wa.yachting.org.au

Dignitaries welcome new season: Commodore Steve Flower, Vice Patron Troy Buswell MLA, Past Commodore Joan Embry, YWA President Denys Pearce & Fiona Pearce 

Patron Acknowledges Flourishing DBYC Club


Patron  Barry House declared the new sailing season open at the Dunsborough Bay Yacht Club on Sunday 3rd November 2013.   

Many friends and supporters from other yacht clubs joined the members and distinguished guests assembling on the expansive lawns in the front of the three year old Clubhouse which continues to grow and expand at an amazing rate.  It all goes down to the volunteers – that special band of people who work so hard for the club which enjoys success commensurate to the input.

Special guests included Vice Patron the Hon. Troy Buswell MLA, Yachting WA President Denys Pearce and his wife Fiona along with Busselton City Councillors.

Distinguished guests, Members and friends enjoyed the day at the Clubhouse overlooking the sparkling waters of Geographe Bay at Quindalup  although the sailpast and subsequent race for the Patron's Cup was slightly marred by lack of breeze. 


Tony Carter skippers the Governor of Western Australia, Malcolm McCusker and his wife Tonia in his 40’ Just Cruisin’   Photo: Bernie Kaaks

Governors Cup Surprise

In a surprise inclusion, the Governor of Western Australia, Malcolm McCusker and his wife Tonia boarded Tony Carter’s 40 footer, Just Cruisin’ and took part in the pursuit race.

 Almost 100 yachts took part, starting at Royal Perth Yacht Club and finishing at Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club after a zig zag course down the river in a gusty easterly breeze.

As the back marker, Gary McNally’s Black Betty began the race, some slower boats had already completed half the course, having started 67 minutes earlier! 

Working his way quietly through the small slower boats from a mid fleet start, former Royal Perth Captain Sail Graham White eventually won the race in the little J24 Rhythm n Blues, though he was made to work extremely hard over the final leg by Eclipse, one of a healthy number of traditional couta boats entered.

Barry Rosen’s Argo, which started in the very first group more than an hour ahead of Black Betty, finished a creditable seventh, only being run down in the last leg.

Gusty conditions made for some challenging sailing and also provided some exhilarating spinnaker runs.  One of the sports boats was towed home after breaking a mast, while a Bakewell White 8 kept onlookers entertained with a wild broach near Point Resolution.

And the Governor’s yacht?  Well, it was forced to retire from the event in order to return her guests to shore in time for their next engagement, but both special guests were beaming as they disembarked.

Dominic Papaluca’s Wild Bull Wins Harbour Classic  Photo: Perth Sailing Photography


2013 Harbour Classic with Legends


On a scorching afternoon and sailing in 5 to 8 knot Westerlies, the Harbour Classic was reduced to two laps and became an exercise in light wind sailing with the bigger boats such as Finistiere, Sagaciousand Syrenka under pressure right from the start. The smaller boats like Traffic Jam, Problem Child andWild Bull were the improvers right through the race and it was no surprise to see Dominic Papaluca’sWild Bull in the able hands of crewmember Ryan Binedell take out the race with good speed and excellent performance on the roundings and hoists.

The fastest boat was of course, Gary McNally’s Black Betty. Peter Briggs was seen campaigningHitchhiker, still competitive after so many seasons and Laurie Flynne’s Dynamic was performing crisply despite the heat on the water. Many thanks to Fremantle Sailing Club, the several sponsors on the day and the continuing support of the Fremantle Port Authority.  

 The America’s Cup legends race comprised stalwarts of the America’s Cup crews that reside in Perth and a number of local legends who were prepared to take it up to the AC legends. Of those, the shortest price favourite was former world match racing champion, Peter Gilmour sailing with his sons as crew. Other legends of the day were Damian Fewster, Skip Lissiman, John Longley, Andy Fethers, Ben Durham, Chris Sutherland, Scott McAllister and two Fremantle club members Declan and Mark Keogh.

Sailing two races in Bathers Bay off Fremantle, the first was a Sports Boats 101 for most of the crews as they sorted out their unfamiliar steeds, the second was a case of lambs to the slaughter as the Gilmour crew showed how to pick the shifts coming down on the 8 knot nor easter and romped home. They then repeated the lesson in the harbour in the precursor to the Harbour Classic.

2013 EFYC Sail Training Course Participants Kylie Swallow, Kylie Olney, Trevor Flint, Nick Van Zwol, Pete Coop, Charlotte Coop, Kellie Mirigliotta, Kate Cockman & Leone Woo


A Field of Fillies at East Fremantle Yacht Club Celebrate Sailing

With higher stakes more fillies are entering the sailing stakes!  Some hunger for success whilst others are exhilarated by the pure joy of the experience.

Whatever the individual attraction and aim, more and more Clubs are welcoming women to the sport and East Fremantle Yacht Club is greatly benefitting from the rapidly increasing numbers of ladies attracted to sailing.

The opening of this season saw two prominent ladies at the Club’s helm.  Maureen Dawson, a keel boat sailor is now Vice Commodore and Kylie Swallow, a Sabre sailor, has taken the helm as Centreboard Captain.

Leone Woo, a mid 2013 graduate of the EFYC Adults Sailing Course can’t stop enthusing about her foray into the sailing world.  Her 12 year old daughter, Tabitha introduced the family to sailing when she joined the Pelican fleet and soon enough encouraged her siblings to follow suit.  With four kids now sailing Tabitha went to work on Leone to sign up for the course along with other Mums Kate Coghlan, Charlotte Cop, Kylie Swallow and Kelly Miriagliotta.

Leone said “It’s so much fun.  I wish other Mums would get out onto the water and give it a try – they would just love it.”

On completing the training and with undiminished enthusiasm, Leone bought a 40 year old Sabre Dinghy from Steve Knight and joined the growing EFYC Sabre fleet.

“It’s magic to have your kids sail past you on the water in their Pelis to give you tips and encouragement”.  Being totally smitten with the sailing bug, husband Alex (a kite surfer) surprised Leone with a brand new Sabre (Combat II), for her birthday. Why Combat II – “We knew nothing about sailing – it was a combat zone” hence the family’s first boat, a Pelican, was Combat I and the new Sabre was named Combat II

Leone, one of four women sailing the Sabre Dinghies at EFYC, has a few months to hone her skills before competing in the Sabre National Championships being hosted at Perth Dinghy Sailing Club at the end of this year.  For Leone, the emphasis however, is primarily on the enjoyment of sailing within a caring club and nurturing fleet where her skills are developing and she is both combating and conquering.


Steve Walters (EFYC) gets a good start at TCYC    


Sabre Dinghy Fleet Ready for Nationals at PDSC

It seems the Sabre Dinghy is going from strength to strength at East Fremantle Yacht Club; with 30 boats now at the club in only their third season complimenting the existing fleet at Perth Dinghy Sailing Club. The ever-expanding fleet is destined to keep growing with several people interested in getting into the class and looking for that ever-elusive boat to come onto the market.

Other Clubs in WA are interested in starting a fleet, but how to get boats is always the issue with the Sabre? Well, there may be help at hand as a group of WA Sabre sailors have had a set of moulds constructed. The first boat is now out of the mould and should be hitting the water soon. The second boat has also been sold and Dave Kenny is very keen to get his new boat wet.

The Cruising Yacht Club, Rockingham has joined the ever-expanding list of Clubs that sail Sabres, which is without doubt the fastest growing fleet in Australia. TCYC’s fleet already consists of four boats and the fifth is under construction.

The Sabres joined the TCYC fleet on the 6th  October and had an absolute blast with a fleet of 22 boats. It was good to see the support for another club. Pete Coop is showing improvement and came second to be the first EFYC boat around the course with Scott Olsen (PDSC) leading the pack.

March Long Weekend will see the East Fremantle Yacht Club Sabres once again at the Walpole Yacht Club for the In the Trees Regatta. This is by far the best place to sail in WA and makes for a great weekend.

Leone Woo of EFYC had a great birthday with her gift of a brand new Sabre. Along with the lady skippers, it is good to see some junior members enjoying their sailing with Ryan Miragliotta, Jacob Van Stroe and Pearson Kennington joining the Sabre fleet - this has caused the average Sabre sailors age to drop dramatically. 

The National Titles are being held at Perth Dinghy Sailing Club this year with a fleet in excess of 80 boats (of all age groups) and a large amount of sponsors to guarantee a fantastic regatta. Now is a great time to get a Sabre and start enjoying sailing. 

Although there is a severe lack of boats available Australia wide, they do come up from time to time, so contact the Sabre Association President Brian Jones on 0438 516 324 or sabreswa1@iprimus.com.auor www.sabre.org.au or for further information contact EFYC Sabre Rep Stephen Knight 0427 444 539.

Life’s Too Short …..

If you’ve seen the Vipers flashing by on the Swan River and wondered what they are about or what they are like to sail, now is your chance to get up close and personal.

In January 2014 the ASBA National Titles are heading West to the location of the 1987 America’s Cup and the stretch of water known as Gage Roads. An ideal location for some great Sports Boat racing with all a sailor could ask for – wind, waves and a few breweries.

Four boats were imported to Western Australia in 2009 since which the fleet has doubled with another container due to arrive here in December. A fleet was started in Sydney in late 2012 and boats are now also sailing in Queensland and Victoria.

Since 2009, the Vipers have proven to be competitive in club racing and under the Australian Sportsboat Measurement System (SMS). The upcoming Australian ASBA Nationals in Fremantle, will see a large contingent of Vipers racing. With around 20 boats, Australia wide now, Viper 640 One Design championships have become a reality.

The Viper 640, a strict one-design with no changes permitted to the factory supplied boat, is one of the fastest growing sportsboats with fleets in the US, Canada, Australia and Europe.

At 6.4m long and only 340kg, it combines the stiffness of a keelboat with the acceleration and planing abilities of a dinghy. The open transom bails water instantly, even in extreme conditions. The Viper which can easily be trailed by a small car has a simple, light rig.  With a carbon mast and single spreaders and lowers, it only has three sails … not  five or six as required by some boats.

While generally raced with a crew of three, the Viper has low loads and is regularly sailed in lighter winds by a minimum of two crew. You’re never too young or too old … crew ages vary from 19 to 55 ( and growing).

For anyone interested, the Viper 640 class is holding an Open Day at South of Perth Yacht Club on Sunday 15th December 2013  9:30am to Noon where demonstration sails are available to interested sailors.  For further information email jonstubbs1@bigpond.com

Yachting WA - Out with the Old and In with the New

The countdown is on and after 32 years as tenants of Nedlands Yacht Club, the offices of Yachting WA will relocate to their new premises in the grounds of Royal Perth Yacht Club.

In 1980 the Executive Committee led by President Dr Andrew Kingsbury, Vice President Jim Granger, Past President David Paris, Executive Officer Peter Hosking and Executive Members Ron Rose, Ted Spight, Harry Hegge, John Bayliss, Norm Bearteaux, Kevin Owens, Huck Scott, Warren Rock and Neil Fogarty determined that the Yachting Association of Western Australia (YAWA) as it was then called, should identify with its members and took up the offer by Nedlands Yacht Club to move to a prefabricated two room building alongside their boat shed.

Lease documents were duly drawn up effective 1st December 1980 and the quote of $5,692.00 from Builder Barry King was accepted for the renovation.

YAWA’s ‘home’ between 1977 and 1980 was  the Community Recreation Councils Perry Lakes Stadium having operated for the previous 20 years from Secretary Ron Tough’s home.

On Monday 22nd December 1980  the staff of two comprising Executive Officer Peter Hosking and Secretary, Mrs Pat Morris, packed  their few belonging,  the solid old stalwart typewriter (no such thing as a computer in those day) and faithful Gestetner Machine (many readers will have zero comprehension of what that was), and trundled from their office at Perry Lakes to the salubrious accommodation in the grounds of NYC on the Esplanade, Dalkeith.

At Nedlands as the staff grew to three, so too did the office with another room added to the pre fab building.

Now, all these years and many promises of a new office later, a tenancy has been secured with Royal Perth Yacht Club who have, with the assistance of YWA Life Member John Flower, designed modern office accommodation suited to two individual tenancies with shared meeting room facilities.

On Monday 19 August 2013 the contractors took site possession and three days later the first pour eventuated.  Utility infrastructure catered to, the slab was laid on 10th September and the casting of the pre-cast wall panels were commenced.  These tilt wall panels cast on-site should, all being well, be erected next week. Enter cranes and voila!  Within little more than a couple of hours the 780 sq. metre building will instantly be roof height.

Once the roof has been added, publicly visible progress from this point will be slowed and only RPYC General Manager Stuart Walton will be privy to the detail – all to be ceremoniously revealed in early 2014.

By the start of Winter 2014 YWA should be well settled into their new ‘home’,  however it is currently premature  for Auld Lang Syne and a fond farewell of our trusty home at Nedlands.  Watch this space… 


Will Ryan and London gold medallist Mathew Belcher. Photo: Craig Heydon

World Champions to World's Best - Fame and Fortune for Mat Belcher


Tuesday evening as part of the ISAF Conference in Oman, saw Mat Belcher announced "ISAF ROLEX World Sailor of the Year".

Having been nominated for this highest honour and having to leave empty-handed on two previous occasions, this make Mat only the second Australian ever to win the award - due recognition for his 17-straight-regatta winning streak.

It didn’t stop there; World Champions Will Ryan and Mathew Belcher were awarded the 2013 Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) Team of The Year award at a gala dinner at the AIS in Canberra.

Mathew Belcher and Will Ryan achieved their biggest victory in this new combination in August this year, claiming the 470 World Championship in France.  On the one-year anniversary of Belcher’s gold medal win with Malcom Page at the London 2012 Olympic Games the 30-year old added the fourth World Championship title to his name while it was the first for new crew Will Ryan.

Belcher and Ryan were chosen from a strong list of finalists that included National Women's Water Polo Team, the National Bowls Team, the Men's K4 1000m (Kayaking), the Olympic Winter Institute Aerial Skiing Team as well as the Under 23 Cycling World Tour Academy.

There is no rest for the duo who after a short break to attend these ceremonies are resuming on-water training early next week in Sydney and looking forward to competing at Sail Melbourne in a few weeks time. 


Genevieve in the Martin 16 Soul Sailor Mobility Cup Halifax Canada


Mobility Cup Challenge for Gevevieve

A new experience for Genevieve Wickham who recently competed in the Mobility Cup in Halifax, Canada in a Martin 16.  She had never seen this type of dinghy prior to the event and found herself competing in it about one hour after boat allocation.  Her physical limitations made it impossible to handle the dinghy without assistance of a Windlass System of electrics for the tiller and someone to manage the mainsail under her direction. Next challenge was how to give directions as her impairment has left her without the language skills to achieve this. Genevieve sailed all seven races with a best placing of 8th and a 15th overall in the 22 Martins competing.   

Despite a number of challenges at the Mobility Cup it was a rewarding and enriching experience and they received a warm welcome at the RNSYC.

They departed Halifax on 31 August arriving in San Francisco for a day’s rest and then onto the water again to compete in the Hansa Class North American Championship being hosted by The Bay Area Association of Disabled Sailors BAADS at the South Beach Yacht Club, Pier 40,  San Francisco.   Again they received a warm welcome and good volunteer support to set up the Liberty for racing.   A fleet of 14 Liberty’s competed including four servos . Competition was good with sailors from the US, Canada, Netherlands, France,  New Zealand and Australia all experiencing the many challenges including the varying  tides and slightly different ways of conducting a regatta .


2013 CSR Regatta Open to All Sailors  Photo: Perth Sailing Photography

Fifty Sixth Cockburn Sound Regatta Cranks Up

This season sees the Fifty Sixth Cockburn Sound Regatta taking place from the 26th to 30th December  2013.  Planning is well under way with Chairperson Alan Campbell putting together a team to ensure that, ‘Serious Sailors having Serious Fun’ remains our key catchcry.  This year the plan is to have two race courses particularly with the idea of catering for ‘Off the Beach’ dinghies.  A step in the right direction for us, and of course aimed at increasing the fleet for 2013. There are still opportunities for associations to work with Alan with a view to having their state titles managed during the regatta.

Trevor Milton will once again be Race Officer and along with his very capable team, ensure that on-water management is of the highest order. The club is increasing the number of moorings this year and for those keen enough there will be opportunities to enjoy the New Year celebrations at the Club and Palm Beach.

The CSR website is running with current information flowing and has provision for the linking of crews, skippers and boats.  CSR Facebook also has regular updates.

Major sponsors have been signed providing generous support (check the website for all details).  All entries received and paid by 30th of November 2013 go into the draw to win a Dhuwest RIB .

Onshore activities will compliment the atmosphere of the regatta along with themed evening meals and entertainment including a pig on a spit which should satisfy the most ravenous yachties.

NOMINATIONS ARE OPEN. The Notice of Race and all information is on the website  www.cockburnsoundregatta.com.au and Facebook page

Perth Voice for the Sports Community

“Let’s Go Sailing” Radio Show


The popularity of the “Let’s Go Sailing” half hour radio magazine show put together by Dr Ed Fethers and Manfred Speicher has convinced the operators of Sport FM on 91.3 to shift the timeslot from 4pm to 6pm instead.  The half hour show will still bring interviews with interesting sailing people and keep sailors in all disciplines interested.


Below the Mantle of Table Mountain the Clippers leave Cape Town bound for Albany WA

Baptism of fire for the Clipper Race Crews due in Albany Soon

The spectacular start of Clipper Race 4 of Leg 3 in front of Table Mountain, Cape Town, to Albany, Western Australia led to a baptism of fire for the Clipper Race Crews.

The competitive 4,700 mile Southern Ocean sleigh ride to Albany, Western Australia with twelve yachts competing in the third leg of the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race, headed out of Table Bay bound for an eta of 27th November 2013.

The first Sunday back at sea was no day of rest for the Clipper Race fleet, though it has certainly been more enjoyable than the preceding week’s unpredictability and harsh, contrasting wind conditions. A few wind holes slowed progress drastically for many of the fleet akin to the Race 2’s Doldrums. Day 7 bought far more consistently strong winds of between 30 to 40 knots, allowing most of the fleet to pick up some excellent cruising and surfing speeds.

Day 13 and Mother Nature invited select Clipper Race teams to a star studded weather show. Those who were invited had no choice in their attendance, though according to skipper reviews it was a fun night of exciting, incredible, awe inspiring and definitely unforgettable proportion.

Gale to violent storm force winds were the star of the night, building quickly and steadily in pace from 50 to 80 knots, then a dramatic finale roared to a deafening crescendo with multiple skippers reporting gusts with wind speeds of 100 to 130 knots. Thankfully no injuries or damage were reported during the proceedings.  With around a week’s racing left in Race 4, it is unclear whether this show was a one night only spectacular or an opening night preview but skippers are all well aware now of the potentials that still lie ahead in the remaining miles to Albany.

A potentially nail-biting battle is now on to reach the first bonus point opportunity, the Scoring Gate, located a little over 500 miles away from the leaders. It stands between 40 degrees south, 55 degrees east and 45 degrees south and 55 degrees east and is not compulsory but the first three yachts through the gate will be awarded 3, 2 and 1 points respectively, which can make a significant difference in the overall race standings.

 The stronger winds should see the fleet arrive on schedule in Albany, their host city in Western Australia. The fleet now due sometime between 24th and 28th November will be berthed at the Albany Waterfront Marina with a scheduled departure on 3rd December 2013 of Race 5 on Leg 4 to Sydney.  Visitors and locals are encouraged to make the crews welcome and to join the planned festivities. The Clipper Festival on 30 November at the Boat Shed, Albany Marina will see a fabulous festival for the whole family with loads of fun activities for all.

The Clipper Race will return to the UK in July 2014 after a total of 670 crew race 40,000 miles and visit 15 ports on six continents in 16 races of 8 Legs.

WA Sailors – the Clipper Round the World is holding an information presentation for the 2015-2016 Round the World Yacht Race at Fremantle Sailing Club on Thursday 21 November 2013commencing at 6:30pm for anyone interested in taking part.

For more information visit www.clipperroundtheworld.com

Newcomer Fifty Four is a welcome addition to the double handed racing division, winning line honours. Photo: Bernie Kaaks

A Light Weather Coventry

The Bureau’s forecast promised hot weather and light winds, and the weather gods delivered both for Fremantle Sailing Club’s Rockwater Coventry Reef Race last Saturday, though breezes were not as light as some competitors feared.

Fleets started in a mild easterly to a turning mark off Port Beach before heading out to sea, around the windmills and south to Coventry Reef.

Gary McNally’s Black Betty surged straight to the lead and was never headed, taking line honours in division 1 over Tony Mitchell’s Sled by a margin of 13 minutes.  So strong was Black Betty’s performance that she was also rewarded with wins on both IRC and YAH handicap systems.  Anthony Kirke’s Enterprise was second with Sled rounding off the podium, also in both handicap divisions.

Peter Hickson’s new and colourful Ker 39, ME II, was first over the line in Division 2, but it was Craig Carter’s Hoodoo Man which won the IRC trophy, followed by ME II and This Way Up. Under YAH handicap, Alan Stein’s Foundation 36 The X Factor finished first, ahead of Hoodoo Man and Lyn Powell’s Fourth Dimension.

Division 3 line honours were fought out between two Beneteau’s, with Neil Harrison’s Deckchairs Overboard finally proving too strong for Dennis Vincent’s Wyuna. Deckchairs also won the YAH Division, followed by Raya.  Under IRC handicap, the irrepressible S&S34 Blondie, sailed by Simon Torvaldsen, was first ahead of Wyuna and Stimulus Package.

The hardy crews in the double handed division welcomed a newcomer in the Beneteau name Fifty Four, sailed by Matt Dickmann and Geoff Bishop. Fifty Four took line honours by a 12 minute margin, but on handicap, it was Kraken, the Jeanneau Sunfast sailed by Todd Giraudo and the popular David “Dubbo” White, which earned first place on both handicap systems.

Many of the yachts competing were committed to the next day’s Club Marine Fremantle Harbour Classic, so celebrations on Saturday evening were a subdued affair by offshore standards. 



Kiteracing Oceanics hits Perth Shores Next Month

With six top ten international kiteracers in Perth next month, the inaugural Kiteracing Oceanic Championships will make a huge splash.

The Kiteracing Oceanic Championships will take over Leighton Beach in Western Australia from 10 to 15 December 2013 with six days of kiteracing action and entertainment.

On the water there will be course racing and big air jumps that are sure to wow the crowds. As part of the action there will be a Freestyle competition during the week, with the finals taking place on Saturday 14 December. Also on the Saturday catch the spectacular Lighthouse to Leighton, where competitors will race the 19km of Indian Ocean between Rottnest Island and Leighton Beach for the fourth successive year.
The Kiteracing Oceanic Championships consists of a series of qualifying races around a marked course. Results from this event will go towards a 12-month rolling world ranking calendar in the IKA World Course Racing Championship. The finals of the course racing and the trophy presentation will be held on Sunday 15th December.
International competitors include four top ten ranked male kite course racers, Florian Gruber (Germany), Blazej Ozog (Poland), Alejandro Climent Hernandez (Spain) and Salir Alexander Cakir (Turkey), world number 1 female course kite racer Steph Bridge (UK), and world number 4 ranked female Aga Grymska (Poland).
Back on shore there will be supporting activities including the Oceanics Bar, Sunset Food Market, Open Air Cinema (screening surf documentary One Touch, starring Joel Parkinson and Wes Berg), free family entertainment, roving performers, beach sports, tasty pop-up food outlets and more. Live music including The Brow Horn Ochestra, Sam Perry, DJ NDORSE and DJ Charlie Bucket will make make it the beach party of the year on Saturday 14 December .
In the lead up to the Championships there will be a Kiteracing Junior Training camp presented by the Warren Jones Foundation from 27 November to 1 December.
The event is run under the auspices of both the International Kiteboarding Association (IKA) and the International Sailing Federation (ISAF). The State Government through Tourism WA is a proud supporter of the Championships.
For more information visit http://kiteoceanics.com or the event Facebook page. #KiteOceanicsWA

50th Anniversary of Cock of Swan Regatta

The Cock of the Swan Regatta is due to fire up on the 1st of December 2013 marking its 50th Anniversary and Perth Dinghy Sailing Club is looking to have as many centreboard classes as possible down on the start line. Many old scores will be settled within the classes and bragging rights will be up for grabs. 

Instigated by Mr Geoffrey Cohen in 1953, as a result of animated bar discussion as to who was the fastest yacht on the Swan River, two identical perpetual trophies, now antiques, were moulded.

The trophies comprise roosters mounted on layered bases with the names of the winning yachts engraved on plaques.  Mr Cohen established a trust fund for the perpetual trophy, the responsibility which was later assumed by the Yachting Association of WA .  Geoffrey Cohen died on 11th November 1988, at the age of 80 years, maintaining his interest in the event all the while, presenting the trophies to the winners for the last time in 1987. 

The trophies are a history of some of the most illustrious WA sailors, a list of which can be found in the current YWA Year Book.

For further information or to sign up for this year’s event contact PDSC Rear Commodore Andrew Wilson on 0433 520 883 or visit http://www.wa.yachting.org.au/  


Annual Yachting WA Year Books Now Available

The annual YWA Year Book is now available at your local Club with more available from the Yachting WA Office. 

The Year Book is available to all at no cost and is a valuable resource tool for sailors and recreational boaters.   Have one at hand! 

An electronic copy is available for download from the YWA Website www.wa.yachting.org.au


WA Sailors Scoop 2013 Australian Yachting Awards

WA Sailors Scoop 2013 Australian Yachting Awards

31/10/2013, Western Australia, Yachting, Yachting WA, Article # 960200
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Matthew Favier of AIS with Award Recipients Carrie Smith and Ella Clark

WA Sailors Scoop 2013 Australian Yachting Awards

Another outstanding year for Australian Olympic and Paralympic sailing team members was celebrated at the 2013 Australian Yachting awards at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Sydney a fortnight ago.

A year after the London 2012 Olympic Games the future of the Australian Sailing Team looks bright with the 2013 Youth World Champions Carrie Smith and Ella Clark of WA, newcomers to the Australian Sailing Squad, rewarded with both the Female and Youth Sailor of the Year awards. Their success was the reward for three years of focused and committed training. Progressing into an Olympic Class will be their next focus.

CEO of the Australian Paralympic Committee (APC) Jason Hellwig presented the Sailor of the Year with a Disability Award to WA sailors Colin Harrison, Jonathan Harris and Russell Boaden. This was in recognition of their bronze medal at the 2013 IFDS World Championships in Kinsale, Ireland in August. It was the first regatta the crew of former Paralympians has sailed together and made for a promising start to their Rio 2016 Paralympic Games campaign.

The Male Sailor of the Year category was awarded to the 470 Class 2013 World Champions, Mathew Belcher and Will Ryan of Queensland. This new combination were rewarded for their domination of the 470 Class winning a total of nine regattas including the ISAF World and European Championships, three ISAF Sailing World Cup regattas and a number of other national and regional championships. The pair has only been sailing together for nine months.

Yachting Australia President David Gotze presented the President’s Award to David Kellett, recognising him for his continued contribution to the sport nationally and internationally.

Sydney Fischer and the late Ian Grant were recognised with the Lifetime Achievement Award for their involvement and contributions to the sport of sailing. Syd Fischer was acknowledged as one of Australia’s greatest ever yachtsman, his sailing career spanning a record 44 Sydney to Hobart Yacht Races. He self-funded a record five America’s Cup campaigns and captained Australia to win at the Admiral’s Cup and Clipper/Kenwood Cups.

Renowned sailing journalist Ian Grant’s work in championing the sport included time with several Queensland news outlets. Grant, who passed away earlier this year, was also passionately involved in radio reporting of sailing events such as the Brisbane to Gladstone Yacht Race, Airlie Beach Race Week and Hamilton Island Race Week.

The Canberra Yacht Club was named as the Sport Promotion Award winner for the introduction of a special sailing program, Buoyed Up, which is designed to provide vulnerable young people aged 7-12 years with a fun, confidence building sailing experience.

Victorian John Burgess was the recipient in the Sport Volunteer Award and Sandringham Yacht Club CEO Richard Hewett in the Sport Professional Award category.

Discover Sailing Day

Discover Sailing Day

28/10/2013, Western Australia, Yachting, Yachting WA, Article # 932029


Discover Sailing Day

Sunday 3rd November 2013


Discover Sailing Day is a day where Australia wide, Clubs open their doors and invite the public to try sailing for free.

They are a fantastic way to have a great day out with your friends, work colleagues or family. Clubs look forward to showing you just how fun, safe, accessible and affordable sailing is.


Participating Clubs will offer a range of activities this Sunday, 3rd November 2013 to provide a taste of sailing (both dinghies and keel boats) and club activities.

Visitors to the Clubs will have the option to go out for a short sail with an experienced sailor, have a look around the club facilities and find out about the programs and courses available. There is something for the whole family and even kids as young as five years old can sail when accompanied by a parent or guardian. People of all-abilities are welcome and some clubs offer accessible facilities for people with a disability.


Discover Sailing Days are free to attend and all boats and safety equipment is provided by the Club. All that is needed are clothes and shoes you don’t mind getting wet, sun screen and a hat. Shoes with non-marking soles are preferred.



Contact your local sailing club for more information, or go to the Yachting WA website  http://www.wa.yachting.org.au/ .


Perth Clubs currently registered to participate this weekend are Claremont Yacht Club,

Fremantle Sailing Club, Hillarys Yacht Club, Mounts Bay Sailing Club, Nedlands Yacht Club,

Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club,  Royal Perth Yacht Club and South of Perth Yacht Club.


In the south west Dunsborough Bay Yacht Club will be there to provide a warm welcome to all.

Bali or Bust – Cat O’ Mine Reaches Bali  by Bernie Siddall

Bali or Bust – Cat O’ Mine Reaches Bali by Bernie Siddall

29/08/2013, Western Australia, Yachting, Yachting WA, Article # 394646

Cat O’Mine crew in Bali or Bust shirts. L to R: Peter Greenhalgh, Roger Bishop, Jim Williams, Dave Phipps & Bernie Siddall missing Peter Downs.


Bali or Bust – Cat O’ Mine Reaches Bali  by Bernie Siddall

The weather forecast was in two parts: a dream run followed by the worst storm of the season! Too late to do much about it, we start in 3 hours!

It had been a long, frustrating and expensive exercise to get the boat and crew to the start line. Cat O’ Mine is a 2009-built Seawind 1160, well used to coastal passages and already the veteran of a half circumnavigation of Australia – from the Yard in Woolongong, NSW over the top and down to Port Geographe. We needed, and had obtained clearances for: Safety (Cat 1); competence (15 courses completed); Immigration & Customs ($$’s paid out and forms filled in) and Insurance inspections, haul-out and big $$’s).

We crossed the start line for the Wonderful Indonesia Fremantle to Bali Race & Rally  at 12:05 on 4th May 2013. In the distance, the Duyfkin sails along to farewell us and VIP boats buzz amongst the fleet. News helicopters hover and the senses are assaulted by sounds, sights, waves rocking the boat and the dry, salty taste of anticipation. Down below, personal gear is getting stowed and territory is being staked out. Six guys in four beds can be a problem; however, the two shake-down voyages established who would bunk with whom.

The winds stayed light, so we motor sailed all day, only getting enough drive from  the sails after dark to push us along at our target of 6 – 7 knots to reach the safety of Shark Bay before the storm hits.

We round Steep Point at 02:00 on Day 4 and hide behind Dirk Hartog to ride out the storm.  At 20:00hrs it hits and we drag our anchor, destroying our windlass in the recovery process. By 16:00 on Day 5 it’s through and we venture out again, this time heading for Exmouth to refuel and pick up parts before crossing.  A screaming reach up the outside of Ningaloo Reef under double reefed sails puts us back into the fleet, but we come up into 28 knots and steep seas as we round North West Cape and head for the Exmouth Marina. Our parts are at the airport but it’s closed until tomorrow, so we relax and restock as the wind howls.

Day 8 and we’re off into roughish seas and 20 knots, heading at 5 degrees for Benoa Marina, Bali. A boisterous day gives way to a sunny afternoon as the wind swings aft and we hoist the MPS until the tropical sun drops like a parachute flare into the ocean and stars burn bright in the darkness. Down below, we experiment with opening a hatch above the bed. Splash! Close it quickly and put the fan on as the heat builds. The boat pitches side to side as the cross swells roll in and every 5 to 10 seconds a wave crashes up under the boat with a shuddering thud. Sleep is all but impossible, so we lie there waiting for our turn on watch.

Peter G plugs in the coded numbers, B31 15 34 114 13 (Boat 31 plus lat and long), presses the send button and our 2305 position report goes by satellite phone to Race Control. Minutes later the phone screen light up and “Okay” appears. Later we type “Happy Mothers’ Day from the crew of Cat O’Mine” Press and send. The girls reply from the luxury of their villa units in Ubud. The satphone is our only line of communication with the outside world and we treat it with the utmost respect. The early morning blue skies give way to storm clouds and a line squall that is coming towards us. Steady 22 – 24 kt winds  whip up to 35 – 40 as the visibility is reduced and driving rain attacks us. More water sloshes over the cabin top and dumps on the autopilot control, sending it into a schizophrenic fit. The howl of the wind is altered as the wind generator goes into overdrive and whines like a World War Two fighter plane diving in behind us. The angry seas fume and foam and we look apprehensively at each other, wondering what will happen next. Through all this, the rig has stood firm with Jimmy holding the boat at 40 degrees to the wind, feathering all but the back of the jib and the tip of the battens in the main sail. “Jib & Battens, Boy” he drawls in his broadest Cornish accent as he recalls the advice of an old salt in the yacht club of his youth. After 20 minutes, the winds swing and moderate to their normal 22 – 25 kts and we know we are through the worst. A second squall dumps more warm liquid on us and the autopilot gives up the fight – it’s hand steering for the next three days! By lunchtime on Day 12, the wind has veered to the north and we either head off east or drop the sail and motor straight into the breeze and seas pointing directly to Bali. We choose the latter and the iron headsail chatters away as we resume the bash and crash that has characterised the voyage so far. We are far enough west to be in the shipping lanes and we spend time checking on vessels coming south through the Lombok Straight and on to Australia. I call the Bai Lu Zhou to tell them we are in their path and after a while their English speaking officer acknowledges and we pass as ships in the night at a safe distance of less than two miles. “Land Ho!” The cry goes up on Day 13 and imperceptibly a vague shape on the horizon slowly transforms into the rugged outline of the Island of the Gods. Dave estimates an arrival around midnight into Benoa Marina and doesn’t like it. On goes the other engine and forward goes the throttle.

Smoothly, the boat lifts and we surge onwards at 6.8 knots – giving a 2130 arrival. Steering is so much easier with the helm balanced! “Race Control, this is the Finish Boat. Cat O’Mine crossed the line at 21 36 12” We are over the line and a round of congratulations and back slapping ensues as the Finish Boat ups anchor and guides us through the winding channel to the Marina. From the boats already moored comes a round of “three cheers” and horns and people shouting to us. Up goes our yellow Quarantine flag, just below the red and white Indonesian flag, and soon the fenders are out as we tie up alongside “Moggy” (great name for a catamaran!).

Now for some sleep and then the arrival party on Saturday. To our surprise and delight, we are awarded second place in the Catamaran division of the Rally fleet. But would we do it again? – Not for a while is the short answer. We were the oldest crew in the Rally, with an average age of 72 and we take a while to recover!

Fremantle Bali Boats berthed in Bali’s Benoa Harbour  

An Irish First for Simon and Sidonia in the Silver Fleet on Lough Derg

An Irish First for Simon and Sidonia in the Silver Fleet on Lough Derg

29/08/2013, Western Australia, Yachting, Yachting WA, Article # 394632

L to R: Sidonia, Simon & Tyson Barwood with Commodore Dennis Hassey, Lough Derg  Yacht Club


An Irish First for Simon and Sidonia in the Silver Fleet on Lough Derg

Two boats representing RFBYC travelled to Ireland to compete in the 15th Mirror World Championships and the pre-worlds regatta - the Irish Nationals, sailed on Lough Derg from July 22 to August 2nd. This was the first World Championship sailing regatta ever held on Irish inland waters, a source of significant pride for the host Lough Derg Yacht Club, one of Irelands oldest. The picturesque club sits adjacent the ruins of Dromineer Castle and the sense of history was palpable.

Irish and British boats made up the majority of the fleet with five other nations represented including South Africa, Canada, Sweden and the Phillipines and five boats from Australia. The Australian team comprised RFBYC’s Rex Henderson (70) with outgoing IMCA President Celia May (63) from NSW as crew, and Simon (47) and Sidonia Barwood (13) also from RFBYC. Dunsborough’s Richard Rowell (46) teamed with daughters Matilda (9) and Rosie (11) over the two regattas and Bunbury’s David (46) and Timothy Pilbeam (8) sailed only the Worlds. The fifth boat was sailed by Tasmanians Ken Barnes (61) and Alex Kingsley (11).

In Australia the Mirror is predominantly sailed by adult (often parent) and child combinations and as the ages of the sailors above show, the class exemplifies the notion of sailing as a sport for life. While there were also adult/child teams from other nations the IRL and GBR squads were about three quarters junior and youth teams. These sailors are young, fit, smart and fearless thanks to their well organised coaching and competitive regatta circuit.

We arrived two days before the Irish Nationals began and proudly took delivery of a brand new Winder boat with the aim of having some practice time. The notoriously wet Irish summer turned into bright sunshine and temperatures in the high 20s, but no wind. The first decent breeze arrived on measurement day. Measurements started at midday so we were first in the queue causing a headache straight up when the scales showed the boat was almost a kilo underweight. To cut a long story short common sense prevailed and once we had the required amount of lead in the boat we were allowed to sail the first regatta.

The first two days of Irish Nationals were sailed in shifty light to moderate winds, conditions we were used to on Freshwater Bay. We scored 10, 12, 17 and then in the fourth race a close second to the Phillipino Olympians who were dominating the regatta. On the third day the wind arrived. Mirror crews should ideally be between 90-110kg, at 126kg Sidonia and I are on the heavy side although the Phillipino’s at over 140kg were showing that it’s better to be smart than light. The stronger conditions should have suited us but we had our worst day yet with a 16th and 20th.  We were clearly unprepared and had forgotten how to sail in pressure, having had few opportunities last summer.  The final day in light air was better for us with a 9th and 3rd that saw us finish the regatta in 9th place from 66 boats.

After two lay days spent day tripping to see the sights in Blarney, Galway, Cork and Limerick and a practice race abandoned after a 180 degree wind shift we were eager for the Worlds to begin.

With 25 extra boats on the start line and multiple postponements, general recalls and BFDs it was clear that the ante had been upped for the ‘main’ regatta. We had a reasonable first race finishing 24th but had been involved in a mark room incident at the bottom mark but felt confident as we were inside and on starboard. The second race was a shocker when we were caught on the wrong side of a windshift on both beats to finish 55th. Our day didn’t get any better when the protest went against us, never good to have used both drops on the first day.

Our performance did improve and the Australians had moments of glory as we came to terms with the big fleet starts and stronger winds.  Team Pilbeam scored a 6th in the second race and won race 6 but were plagued with inconsistency carrying a few big numbers. Team Rowell and the Tasmanians were both sailing consistently with most of their results in the top half. After day two the fleets were split and all Australians were in the Silver Fleet (second third) except for Rex and Celia, battling away bravely toward the top of the Bronze Fleet. The fleet designation did not affect the racing with single start lines for each race.

Our results had been consistent after the first day with most places in the 20s and two 14ths. In one of those we led at the first mark but dropped back as we couldn’t fly the spinnaker having broken our pole in the previous race. The last two days were sailed in heavy conditions 18-25 with gusts to 30 knots. In race 11 we were 3rd around the top mark the second time, then narrowly avoided a capsize when a gust put the boat ahead over.  We overtook the leading boat that wasn’t flying  spinnaker on the reaches and led for two legs before paying the price for not covering on the last, very short beat to be pipped by less than 6 inches on the line. The 3rd place was at the same time our best result and our greatest disappointment. It was a thrill to have led the fleet for so long but devastating to have thrown our chance for a race win away.

The South African brother sister team of Ryan (16) and Michaela (13) Robinson sailed a beautifully consistent regatta, with all top ten finishes, but were only a few points clear of the powerful Phillipino’s going into the last day. They gained four boats over the PHI team in the first race before being pushed over the line for a BFD in the final. Agony turned to relief when they realised the Phillipino’s had also been black flagged, they had won the regatta without having to sail the last race. The Robinsons were last boat ashore, surrounded by the entire South African team to a rousing reception.

We finished the regatta in 24th position and won the Silver Fleet trophy and were fourth in the family (parent/child) category. Ken and Alex finished 43rd and placed third in the Masters (helm over 50yrs) category with team Pilbeam in 40th, the Rowells 41st and Rex and Celia 66th in a fleet of 91 boats, a creditable performance given the challenging conditions and the fact that their combined ages were more than four and a half times that of the winning team.

We loved our time in Ireland and plans are being made for the South African Worlds in January 2015 where accommodation will be in a safari tent village. The spectacular venue – Theewater - is a very large dam in the mountains ninety minutes outside Capetown and promises another new experience, sailing at altitude, we can’t wait.  Simon Barwood.



Kiteracing Oceanic Championships are coming to WA

Kiteracing Oceanic Championships are coming to WA

29/08/2013, Western Australia, Yachting, Yachting WA, Article # 394628

Kiteracing Oceanic Championships are coming to WA

Two years on from Perth 2011, I am excited to announce an international level competition course racing event we are bringing to Western Australia’s Indian Ocean shores; the Kiteracing Oceanic Championships.

Kiteboarding has become one of the fastest growing water sports worldwide, founding a loyal community of enthusiasts at every beachside suburb with regular breeze! Western Australia’s peerless beaches and ocean breezes attract thousands of colourful kites down to the gustiest spots most afternoons along the coastline. 

The International Kiteboarding Association is the ISAF sanctioned governing body for kiteboarding, overseeing the course racing on Leighton Beach in December. Ranking points from this competition to roll towards the world championships with this event joining the IKA’s annual racing calendar, adding further reason for competitors from Australia, New Zealand, Great Britain, Spain, Germany and further abroad to race.

This event is building to become the most anticipated race on the international circuit and together with the Fremantle Doctor, conditions are bound to bring us an exceptionally fast race to watch. I look forward to welcoming a new breed of sailing athlete to Fremantle, and I invite you all to join me on Leighton Beach this December!

The Fremantle Doctor will deliver exciting conditions for one of the world’s fastest sailing classes as Western Australia hosts the inaugural IKA Kiteracing Oceanic Championships.

Five days of onshore and offshore activities will launch with the first rounds qualifying heats and beach activities for families and public spectators coming to Leighton Beach to watch the spectacular display of colourful kites racing through the Indian Ocean. The finals will culminate in an impressive first past the post clash, leaving audiences still holding their breath as the competitors speed past the finish.

The longest kiterace in Australia, the Lighthouse to Leighton is slated for Saturday December 14th. This 19km race launches from Rottnest Island to speed across the Gage Roads pass back to mainland shores. In 2010 Alex Caizergues set a record time of 23.34 to finish this now world renown race.

The inaugural Kiteracing Oceanic Championships will take place on Leighton Beach in North Fremantle from December 10-15, 2013. Visit www.kiteoceanics.com for event and competitor information. John Longley.