Fast and Fresh in the Grant Thornton Short Haul Night Race — Cruising Yacht Club of Australia

20 мая 2014 | Author: | No comments yet »
Beneteau Antares 8

Fast and Fresh in the Grant Thornton Short Haul Night Race

A fresh north north easterly breeze of 25 knots provided a fast race around Sydney Harbour, last evening, Friday 8 November, for the 12 competitors in the Grant Thornton Short Haul Night Race; with Crosshaven taking IRC honours and Sante winning on PHS.

“It was a really enjoyable race – we love the night Harbour races and we’d do more Short Haul races if they didn’t conflict with the Short Ocean pointscore races,” Sean Rahilly, co-owner of Crosshaven . said this morning. Crosshaven won this same race in 2011 and has finished in the top three places in other night races in recent seasons.

Crosshaven . Sean Rahilly and Justin Pelly’s Sydney 36CR won from Stormy Petrel . Kevin O’Shea’s classic S S 36, with Saltshaker, Peter Franki’s Sydney 36 CR third.

“We had a tactically duel with Saltshake r up to the Junction Bell mark and around the course. Santè was also in the picture – they would catch us on the downwind legs and then we were able to pass them upwind.

“They ( Santè) ran us down on the long run down to the finish line – taking the gun by one second,” Rahilly added.

“We had a clean start at the pin end of the line. Stormy Petrel, who had commenced at the Committee boat end of the line, crossed the whole fleet shortly after the start. After that, we seemed to get away from the rest of the fleet – I didn’t really look back – just focussed on the battle between us, Saltshaker and Santè ,” he concluded.

Ian Guanaria’s Beneteau 35 One More No More is still on top of the IRC overall series pointscore, ten points clear of Stormy Petrel with Elusive (Paul Billingham and Pete McGee’s Bavaraia 42 Match) third, a further two points adrift.

Starting half an hour prior to the Cabbage Tree Island Blue Water Pointscore race and Rolex Sydney Hobart qualifier, at 1830hrs, Principal Race Officer Denis Thompson sent the fleet on course two which saw them sail up the Harbour to Junction Bell mark, after a start in Point Piper, before returning to round Shark and Clark Island twice.


“It was a good quick race with 25 knots of north north easterly breeze that held in for most of the race, dropping to 20 knots towards the end of the race. The conditions really suited the heavy cruiser/racer boats – they were in their element,” Race Officer Denis Thompson said.

“The finish between Santè and Crosshaven was exciting – I didn’t know who was going to get to the line first. The team on LuLuBelle (Peter Lewis) were very happy with the conditions. They had dinner in the oven the whole way around the race track and we could smell it cooking as they crossed the finish line!”

Geoff and Vicki Player’s Beneteau Sense 50 Silver Minx finished second to Santè (Rob and Sue Segeart’s brand new Beneteau Sense 46) following on from their win on PHS last week. “It was a little bit rugged out there – it’s the first time we really sailed in those conditions,” Geoff Player said.

“35 knots was the biggest gust I saw. We had two reefs in the main and a reef in the self-tacking headsail which kept the boat balanced. We kept in touch with most of the fleet after being a little late to start. Scott (Geoff’s son and tactician) had a minor accident and bashed his knee, which saw him limping around the boat all night.

“On the run down towards the finish, our boat speed was 11 knots in 30 knots of breeze. It was great to sail in such as good breeze. We seem to be hitting our strides, six races into the season,” Player added.

Beneteau Antares Series 9

“It was a sensational race – definitely our sort of weather,” Peter Lewis of LuLu Belle said. LuLu Belle’s fifth place sees them two points behind Sextant in the overall series pointscore.

“We were surfing at times in the Harbour – catching waves (albeit little ones) off Shark Island on our way to Clarke Island, but we were sailing conservatively.

“We experienced some major gear failures on board — the wine cellar was rattling (although we didn’t lose any bottles), the BBQ cover blew off and the quiche Lorraine was over done! We had to turn off the oven on the leg up to Junction Bell and turn the oven back on after we rounded Shark Island the second time. And the crew mascot, Wilson, was nowhere to be seen!” Lewis laughed.

“It was an eerie night on the Harbour with the combination of smoke, dusk and city lights and then on our way home to Middle Harbour we got this blast of hot wind – like having a hair dryer in your face.

“ Stormy Petrel got a great start and I thought I’d better let him win this week after I mucked him up last race around Manly East. I had to tack away which forced him to tack away too. I owed him a bottle of rum for that, so rather than pay the debt I let him beat me!” Lewis concluded.

Stormy Petrel rounded out the PHS Division podium in third place, with InCahoots (Patrick and Roberta Easton’s Beneteau Oceanis 50) leading the overall series pointscore from One More No More and Sextant (Denis Doyle and Lynne Smith).

The next Grant Thornton Short Haul Pointscore race is the Sydney to Pittwater passage race for the 57 th Paul Royle Memorial Trophy, to be conducted on Saturday 23 November, followed by the Pittwater to Sydney return passage race on Sunday 24 November.

By Jennifer Crooks, CYCA Media

Beneteau Antares Series 9
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