JJ Giltinan: Defender on a roll
Published on March 15th, 2020
In the absence of a world title for the 18ft Skiff Class, the JJ Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship is it, held annually in Sydney, Australia. For a region that likes to go fast, and a legion of legends with names on the trophy, it’s time again to make history.
Sydney, AUS (March 15, 2020) – The Honda Marine team of David McDiarmid, Matt Steven and Brad Collins tightened their grip slightly on the 2020 JJ Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship when they scored their second win of the regatta in Race 2 on Sydney Harbour today.
Once again, the defending champion team came from behind in the SSW wind before racing away to win by 1m46s.
The race for second place behind Honda Marine was close over the last two legs of the course and became a thriller in the closing stages as Winning Group (Seve Jarvin, Sam Newton, Scott Babbage) desperately hung on to cross the finish line a mere 5s ahead of Yandoo (John Winning, Mike Kennedy and Fang Warren).
Smeg (Micah Lane) once again came back from a slow start to finish fourth, ahead of The Oak Double Bay-4 Pines (Aron Everett) and the early leader Noakesailing (Sean Langman).
The top 10 placings on the points table after two races shows Honda Marine with a score of two points, followed by Winning Group on 6, Shaw & Partners Financial Services (James Dorron) and Smeg on 9, Australian champion Tech2 (Jack Macartney) on 12, Yandoo 14, The Oak Double Bay-4 Pines 17, Finport Finance (Keagan York) 18, URM (Marcus Ashley-Jones) 19 and Appliancesonline.com.au (Brett Van Munster) on 24.
Today’s race was sailed in a SSW wind between 15-22-knots over the long South course which always produces a spectacular spinnaker run and a lot of hard work for the crews.
As was the situation in Race 1, Sean Langman’s Noakesailing led the fleet at the windward mark then sailed a great downwind leg to Obelisk the establish a clear break over Winning Group and Honda Marine, with The Kitchen Maker-Caesarstone (Jordan Girdis) and Vintec (Kirk Mitchell) close behind.
On the following leg back to the Totem Pole at the south end of Shark Island, Noakes continued to retain her lead but the defending champion Honda Marine was beginning to make her move and started to put pressure on Noakesailing as the pair approached the rounding mark.
Langman and his team elected to go for a spinnaker to try and hold off the charging Honda Marine but it was a move fraught with danger and ultimately cost them the lead.
The two leaders had moved ahead of Winning Group and Yandoo, and a group of boats including Smeg, Tech2, Vintec and Queenslander, skippered by Australian International 14 class champion David Hayter.
Tech2 had also began to improve her position and was in fifth place as the fleet approached the Athol Bay mark, but a capsize on the spinnaker drop ruined their chances and the Australian champion dropped back to finish ninth.
Honda’s lead was 40s at the Clark Island windward mark on the second lap of the course and the team elected to gybe early while the chasing Winning Group continued on a starboard gybe.
Honda Marine had to drop their spinnaker as to clear Bradleys Head and Winning Group got to within a few boat lengths of the leader as the pair raced downwind towards Obelisk.
As hard as they tried, the Winning Group team couldn’t match the downwind speed of Honda Marine and gradually fell back into the clutches of Yandoo, before hanging on to narrowly take second place.
Race dates are:
March 14 Race 1
March 15 Race 2
March 17 Races 3 & 4
March 18 Races 5 & 6
March 19 Race 7
March 21 Race 8
March 22 Race 9
Entries for 2020 JJ Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship:
Honda Marine: David McDiarmid, Matt Steven, Brad Collins
Winning Group: John Winning Jr., Seve Jarvin, Sam Newton
Finport Finance: Keagan York, Matt Stenta, Angus Williams
Shaw & Partners Financial Services: James Dorron, Harry Bethwaite, Tim Westwood
Smeg: Micah Lane, Ricky Bridge, Peter Harris
C-Tech: Alex Vallings, Sam Trethewey, Matt Coutts
Tech2: Jack Macartney, Charlie Wyatt, Trent Barnabas
Appliancesonline.com.au: Brett Van Munster, Phil Marshall, Kurt Fatouris
The Oak Double Bay-4 Pines: Aron Everett, Courtney Mahar, Charlie Gundy
Noakesailing: Sean Langman, Ed Powys, Nathan Edwards
The Kitchen Maker-Caesarstone: Jordan Girdis, Lachlan Doyle, Tom Quigley
Yandoo: John Winning, Mike Kennedy, Jasper Warren
Vintec: Kirk Mitchell, Pete Nicholson, Matt Wark
Maersk Line: Peron Pearse, Eli Liefting, Harry Clark
Rag & Famish Hotel: Bryce Edwards, Jacob Broom, Rory Cox
Birkenhead Point Marina: Tom Anderson, Elliot Scali, Tom Arkens
URM: Marcus Ashley-Jones, Cam Gundy, Lewis Brake
Ilve: Pedro Vozone, Matt Doyle, Jerome Watts
Queenslander: David Hayter, Nathaniel Dutton, Elliot Mahar
Dal Zotto: Jack Sprague, Josh Feldmann, Marc Chapon
Noakes Blue: Yvette Heritage, Rory Hunter, Oliver Scott-Mackie
Bird & Bear: Tom Clout, Cameron McDonald, John Walton
Lumix: Alex Watson, Cooper Richmond, Ben Roxburgh
QMC: Matt Rogers, Darren Rogers, Steve Wilson
Source: Frank Quealey, Australian 18 Footers League Ltd.