Big Wind Launches Youth Match Racing Champs

Published on November 22nd, 2016

Sydney, Australia (November 22, 2016) – Twelve teams lined up against each other in the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s Elliott 7ms today for the Musto International Youth Match Racing Regatta. The racing was set up in Rushcutters Bay, and the Nor’easter was in early at 12 knots for the start, which continued to build to 22 knots throughout the day.

The Race Committee, led by Dennis Thompson, fired out 48 matches today in quick succession, though having to take a short break before flight nine due to a breakage. The typical Sydney seabreeze had already built to 16 knots by flight 3, and held at 19-22 knots for the afternoon before dying slightly at the end of the racing.

The competitors were eager to do battle, proven by the amount of penalties given out to most competitors during the racing. It was Harry Price (CYCA) who came out of the day as regatta leader, winning 8 out of 8 races, closely followed by Will Dargaville (RPAYC) and George Anyon (RNZYS) who’s score cards are 7 from 8, and Will Boulden (RFBYC) winning 6 from 7 races.

The symmetrical spinnakers used for the event encouraged tight racing, as the teams used a range sailing angles downwind to attack their opponents when behind. There were multiple luffing downwind situations that asked for umpire’s calls, including one from Will Eastman (RPNYC) who luffed George Anyon rather aggressively, resulting in a penalty on himself down the first run. However his great crew work at the bottom mark rounding meant that he was able to extend far enough ahead of Anyon having difficulty, and complete the penalty to take lead to the finish line.

Harry Price gave some penalties to his opponents throughout the day, but was also on the receiving end of one he had to work hard to get rid of.

“We had a Port and Starboard situation with Will Eastman on the first upwind of flight 7, where we were clearly in the wrong and received the penalty for it. The race continued to be tight, with only a boat length or two in it until the top of the second work, where we were able to sail a good shift and take our lead to about three boat lengths and do our penalty turn,” commented Price. “Will made us work really hard for that win, it was an exciting race.”

The teams with less time in the Elliott 7m were the ones that had some scrambling at the bottom mark approaches, which Price seemed to take advantage of. “Our crew work was great today in the windier breeze. We didn’t have any major issues, which is a big credit to the team.”

Due to a breakage on the water, flight 9 match 2 (Wagner against Boulden) and flight 10 match 4 (Killian against Grimes) were not sailed, and so will be starting tomorrow morning at an early warning signal of 9:30am. Flight 11 will then follow these two matches, according to the draw. The wind is forecasted to be similar for racing tomorrow to continue the round robin.

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Twelve teams from four countries will compete in Elliott 7ms from November 22 to 25 in Sydney Harbour. The winner of this World Sailing Grade 2 youth match racing event receives an invitation to Long Beach Yacht Club’s 2017 Ficker Cup Grade 2 event, which is then a qualifier for the Grade 1 Congressional Cup.

Source: Olivia Price, CYCA

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