March 19, 2020

18FT SKIFFS: JJ GILTINAN CHAMPIONSHIP, RACE 8 and 9

results race 8

results race 9

handicap pointscore 19th March

regatta pointscore 19th March

Series Results – JJ Giltinan 2020 (Drop Number_ 6) – 19_03_2020 19_20_44

Defending champion Honda Marine team of David McDiarmid, Matt Steven and Brad Collins took out the third consecutive JJ Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship after another impressive performance in the final two races of the regatta on Sydney Harbour today.

Going into today’s final two races, Honda Marine held a four point lead over Winning Group and the scene was set for a spectacular finish between the two champion teams.

Conditions were perfect for the day’s racing on Sydney Harbour.  A warm sunny day with a 10-15 knots North East wind, perfect for the teams to use their big #1 rigs.

Honda Marine, as she had done so often during the series, came from behind with brilliant boat speed to take out the first race (Race8) by 33s, which was enough to take the title before going into the final race (Race 9).

In Race 9, Winning Group led all the way to defeat Honda Marine by 22s, with Tech2 finally producing somewhere near her best form to finish in third place, a further 19s behind Honda Marine.

The final pointscores for the championship are:  Honda Marine 14, Winning Group 18, Smeg  (Micah Lane, Ricky Bridge, Peter Harris) 41, Shaw & Partners Financial Services (James Dorron, Harry Bethwaite, Tim Tim Westwood) 43, Tech2 (Jack Macartney, Charlie Wyatt, Trent Barnabas) 44, Finport Finance (Keagan York, Matt Stenta, Angus Williams) 61.

In the day’s first race, Winning Group, with a 4-times JJ winning crew of Seve Jarvin, Sam Newton and Scott Babbage, sailed a great race but couldn’t hold out against the speed of Honda Marine over the final lap of the two-lap course.

Noakesailing (Sean Langman, Nathan Edwards, Ed Powys) was 36s behind Winning Group in third place, followed by Bird & Bear (Tom Clout), URM (Marcus Ashley-Jones) and Australian champion Tech2 (Jack Macartney).

Determined to reverse the result of the earlier race, the Winning Group team were quick to get into a strong position ahead of Honda Group and, after trailing the early leader Shaw & Partners Financial Services, were 12s ahead of Finport Finance at the top mark, ahead of a tightly bunched group of Smeg, Shaw & Partners and Honda Marine.

Winning Group increased the margin to 30s at the bottom mark and this time were able to retain the lead over the final lap of the course to defeat Honda Marine by 22s, with Tech2 coming home ion third place, a further 19s behind Honda Marine.

Smeg finished in fourth place, ahead of Finport Finance and Shaw & Partners Financial Services.  Smeg’s fourth place in Race 9 enabled the team to finish third overall in the championship, just two points ahead of Shaw & Partners.

Today’s Racing Results, provisional regatta final points are attached.

A pdf copy of the 32-page 2020 JJ Giltinan Championship programme is available at:

https://www.18footers.com.au/18-footers-sailing/documents/

Click on “2020 JJ GILTINAN PROGRAMME” button

Other news about the championship is available at:

Twitter                        @18skiff

Instagram                   @18skiff

Facebook                    International 18Ft Skiff

March 18, 2020

18FT SKIFFS: JJ GILTINAN CHAMPIONSHIP, RACE 6 and 7

regatta pointscore 18th March

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jjg_2020__race_7

The defending champion Honda Marine team of David McDiarmid, Matt Steven and Brad Collins hold a narrow points lead over their nearest rival as the fleet goes into the final two races of the JJ Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship on Sydney Harbour tomorrow.

After each team drops the worst placing from the seven races sailed to date, Honda Marine leads former World champions Seve Jarvin, Sam Newton and Scott Babbage, in Winning Group, by just four points, so every placing in each of the two races will be critical.

Honda Marine has a net total of 11 points, Winning Group is on 15 points.  Shaw & Partners Financial Services (James Dorron, Harry Bethwaite, Tim Westwood) is third on 28, followed by Smeg (Micah Lane) 29, Tech2 (Jack Macartney) 35,  and Finport Finance (Keagan York) 43.

In today’s first race, sailed over a windward-return two-lap course in a 13-18 knots NE wind, Honda Marine came from behind early in the race to defeat Smeg (Micah Lane, Ricky Bridge, Peter Harris) by 44s, with Winning Group a further 35s back in third place.

C-Tech (Alex Vallings) was fourth, followed by Shaw & Partners Financial Services and Finport Finance.

Honda Marine trailed the early leader, Shaw & Partners, to the top mark but powered downwind under her big rig (her opponents had smaller #2 rigs) to hold a 7s margin at the bottom mark.

Over the final lap of the course, Honda Marine out-sailed the rest of the fleet to go on to an impressive 44s victory.

In the latter race (Race 7), Winning Group won the start and quickly opened up a clear 45s break over Noakesailing (Sean Langman), Smeg, Tech2, Noakes Blue (Yvette Heritage), Bird & Bear (Tom Clout), Finport Finance, Vintec (Kirk Mitchell) and Honda Marine, which was 1m30s behind the leaders.

Unlike Race 6, the big rig boats were unable to gain enough time over the smaller rigged boats downwind and Winning Group was still 30s ahead at the bottom markl.  Noakesailing was still in second place but Tech2 had edged just ahead of Smeg in the battle for third place.

Over the final lap of the course, Winning Group had little trouble retaining her lead and was still 45s ahead of Smeg and Tech2 at the top mark.

Smeg and Tech2 then staged a spectacular spinnaker battle on the run down the middle of Sydney Harbour to the finish.  Tech2 finally getting the better of Smeg to take second place by just 8s.

The JJ Giltinan Championship will conclude Thursday with two races (races 8 and 9) being sailed to complete the nine-race regatta.

1996 JJ Giltinan world champion Stephen Quigley will present the traditional blue ribbon to the winning team on the water, immediately after the completion of Race 9.  Mr. Quigley has also won Australian, European, NSW and Australian 18 Footer League Club championships, and has been a Director of the club for the past 20 years.

NOTE:

Unfortunately, due to the present COVID-19 restrictions, the Board of the Australian 18 Footers League have decided to cancel the Club’s spectator ferry until further notice.

Racing will continue, and AeroMedia Live Broadcast team will be out on Sydney Harbour to capture all the action, which can be viewed LIVE online at www.18footers.com and clicking on the ’18 Footers TV’ link..

A pdf copy of the 32-page 2020 JJ Giltinan Championship programme is available at:

https://www.18footers.com.au/18-footers-sailing/documents/

Click on “2020 JJ GILTINAN PROGRAMME” button

JJ Giltinan Championship information, race results, race reports and photographic images are also available on the club website www.18footers.com and other news about the championship is available at:

Twitter                        @18skiff

Instagram                   @18skiff

Facebook                    International 18Ft Skiff

March 17, 2020

18FT SKIFFS: JJ GILTINAN CHAMPIONSHIP, RACE 3, 4 & 5

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jjg_2020__race_4

jjg_2020__race_5regatta pointscore 17th March

Three windward-return course races staged on Day 3 of the JJ Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship on Sydney Harbour  produced three different winners in the light SE breeze.

In the first race of the day (Race 3 of the championship) Shaw and Partners Financial Services (James Dorron, Harry Bethwaite, Tim Westwood) led all the way over the two-lap course to cross the finish line 13s ahead of Finport Finance (Keagan York, Matt Stenta, Angus Williams).

Defending champion and series leader Honda Marine (David McDiarmid, Matt Steven, Brad Collins) was a further 50s back in third place, followed by Winning Group (Seve Jarvin), C-Tech (Alex Vallings), URM (Marcus Ashley-Jones), Smeg (Micah Lane) and Rag & Famish Hotel (Bryce Edwards).

Race 4 was sailed over three laps and again it produced an all the way winner, Bird & Bear (Tom Clout, John Walter, Cameron McDonald).

Bird & Bear dominated the first two laps of the course then hung on to defeat Honda Marine by 40s, with Yandoo (John Winning, Mike Kennedy, Fand Warren) a further 1m52s back in third place.

Race 3 winner Shaw & Partners Financial Services finished in fourth place, ahead of Winning Group and Sean Langman’s Noakesailing.

The final race of the day was sailed over another two-lap course and once again produced an all-the-way winner when Winning Group (Seve Jarvin Sam Newton, Scott Babbage) cruised home a 45s winner from Rag & Famish Hotel (Bryce Edwards, Jacob Broome, Rory Cox).

Honda Marine was 16s back in third place, followed by Yandoo, Tech2 (Jack Macartney), The Kitchen Maker-Caesarstone (Jordan Girdis) and the previous winner Bird & Bear.

The top six point scores after five races, without a drop, are:  Honda Marine 10, Winning Group 16, Yandoo 36, Shaw & Partners 37, Smeg 39 and Tech2 on 43.

NOTE:

Unfortunately, due to the present COVID-19 restrictions, the Board of the Australian 18 Footers League have decided to cancel the Club’s spectator ferry until further notice.

Racing will continue, and AeroMedia Live Broadcast team will be out on Sydney Harbour to capture all the action, which can be viewed LIVE online at www.18footers.com and clicking on the ’18 Footers TV’ link..

The club’s promotional day on the Island bar, Wednesday (March 18) has also been cancelled.

A pdf copy of the 32-page 2020 JJ Giltinan Championship programme is available at:

https://www.18footers.com.au/18-footers-sailing/documents/

Click on “2020 JJ GILTINAN PROGRAMME” button

JJ Giltinan Championship information, race results, race reports and photographic images are also available on the club website www.18footers.com and other news about the championship is available at:

Twitter                        @18skiff

Instagram                   @18skiff

Facebook                    International 18Ft Skiff

March 15, 2020

18FT SKIFFS: JJ GILTINAN CHAMPIONSHIP, RACE 2

jjg_2020__race_2

regatta pointscore 15th March

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.

Today’s Race Results, regatta points to date, and images from today’s race are attached.

Races 3 and 4 of the championship will be sailed on Tuesday, March 17).

Other race dates are:

Wednesday                        March 18                             Races 5 & 6

Thursday                              March 19                             Race 7

Saturday                              March 21                             Race 8

Sunday                                 March 22                             Race 9

Spectators can see all the teams while they are rigging, then follow the racing on board the club’s spectator ferry, which leaves Double Bay Wharf, alongside the rigging area, at 2pm.

Book online through the club’s website www.18footers.com

AeroMedia Live Broadcast team will be out on Sydney Harbour to capture all the action.  For those who can’t make it onto the water, live streaming is available at www.18footers.com and clicking on the ’18 Footers TV’ link.

A pdf copy of the 32-page 2020 JJ Giltinan Championship programme is available at:

https://www.18footers.com.au/18-footers-sailing/documents/

Click on “2020 JJ GILTINAN PROGRAMME” button

JJ Giltinan Championship information, race results, race reports and photographic images are also available on the club website www.18footers.com and other news about the championship is available at:

Twitter                        @18skiff

Instagram                   @18skiff

Facebook                    International 18Ft Skiff

March 14, 2020

TECH2 LEADS THE AUSTRALIAN 18ft SKIFF CHALLENGE

The traditional Invitation Race for the JJ Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship was sailed on Sydney Harbour  in a 12-15-knot North East wind.  As usual, many in the fleet used the race as a warm-up for the major title and not too much should be read into all the performances, although Tech2 looked fast on each leg of the course and held a big lead throughout before crossing the finish line 1m59s ahead of Smeg, with The Oak Double Bay-4 Pines a further 7s back in third place.

 

Race 1 of the 2020 JJ Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship will be sailed on Sydney Harbour today.  Should the predicted South-West winds of around 28-knots, or more, face the fleet then all teams will be tested to the max.

 

The newly-crowned Australian champion Jack Macartney has the enthusiasm, dedication, a love of sailing, a whole lot of talent, and the determination to win the coveted trophy back for Australia when twenty four of the world’s best teams line up for tomorrow’s race.

 

After finishing runner-up to Michael Coxon’s Thurlow Fisher Lawyers at the 2017 JJs, Macartney ‘retired’ from the 18s but is back with a classy team which includes Charlie Wyatt, a rookie to the 18s, on the sheet, and four times JJ Giltinan champion Trent Barnabas in the bow of a brand new Van Munster Boats-built skiff.

 

Watching New Zealand’s David McDiarmid win the past two JJs since his break away from the 18s might have given Jack the urge to return to the class this season, particularly as he has been able to put such a strong team together.

 

Support for this 2020 challenge is supported by Tech2, which is a brand new sponsor to the 18s.

 

The new skiff didn’t hit the water until early December when the team finished fifth in Race 2 of the NSW Championship.  Despite missing the first race of the championship, Tech2 quickly showed her potential and finished fifth overall in the 18-boat fleet.

 

Not surprisingly, Tech2 continued to improve when racing resumed after the mid-season break and produced incredibly consistent performances over the nine-race Australian Championship.

 

It was Jack Macartney’s second Australian Championship victory, having teamed with skipper Micah Lane and Drew Waller, in the bow, to win the 2006-2007 championship in Macquarie Real Estate.

 

Obviously refreshed after his brief break from the 18s, Jack said: “I’m really looking forward to the 2020 JJs after a few years out.  I’ve come back energised with an awesome crew in Charlie and Trent.”

 

“The kiwis are definitely the bench-mark.  We are aiming to sail a consistent and accurate regatta and let the result take care of itself.”

 

“Tech2 are a fantastic sponsor and right behind us for the battle ahead.”

 

The other leading Australian challengers will come from Winning Group, Finport Finance, Shaw & Partners Financial Services, Smeg, Noakesailing, Appliancesonline.com.au and The Oak Double Bay-4 Pines

 

Race dates are:

Saturday                              March 14                             Race 1

Sunday                                 March 15                             Race 2

Tuesday                               March 17                             Races 3 & 4

Wednesday                        March 18                             Races 5 & 6

Thursday                              March 19                             Race 7

Saturday                              March 21                             Race 8

Sunday                                 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

Spectators can see all the teams while they are rigging, then follow the racing on board the club’s spectator ferry, which leaves Double Bay Wharf, alongside the rigging area, at 2pm.

 

Book online through the club’s website www.18footers.com

 

AeroMedia Live Broadcast team will be out on Sydney Harbour to capture all the action.  For those who can’t make it onto the water, live streaming is available at www.18footers.com and clicking on the ’18 Footers TV’ link.

 

A pdf copy of the 32-page 2020 JJ Giltinan Championship programme is available at:

https://www.18footers.com.au/18-footers-sailing/documents/

Click on “2020 JJ GILTINAN PROGRAMME” button

 

JJ Giltinan Championship information, race results, race reports and photographic images are also available on the club website www.18footers.com and other news about the championship is available at:

 

Twitter                        @18skiff

Instagram                   @18skiff

Facebook                    International 18Ft Skiff

March 10, 2020

TEAM HONDA MARINE GOING FOR THREE IN A ROW

When the 24 boats contesting the 2020 JJ Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship on Sydney Harbour from March 14-22, defending champion David McDiarmid could become the first New Zealand skipper to win three titles in the 82-year history of the world’s premier 18-Footer championship.

 

David, Brad Collins and Matt Steven will head a three-boat team from New Zealand in their Honda Marine-sponsored skiff.

 

They are joined by the experienced C-Tech team of Alex Vallings, Sam Trethewey and Matt Coutts, and the very much improved young Maersk Line team of Peron Pearse, Eli Liefting and Harry Clark.

 

McDiarmid is quick to point out that the Honda Marine campaign is very much a team effort.

 

David says: “It’s definitely not all about me.  We are a three-man team and everyone is critical to our success.”

 

“When we all teamed together, we joked about our goal of being able to win three JJs, and now we have that opportunity.”

 

“It wouldn’t be possible without the support we have received from a large group of people over the last seven JJs.”

 

“With a lot of hard work, we have improved year on year to first catch up to the Sydney fleet in 2016, then passing them in 2018.”

 

“The highlight of our 18-foot campaign so far was holding all four major international trophies at the same time.  As well as the JJ title, we won the Mark Foy in Fiji, the European Championship in Lake Garda, and ANZAC in Auckland.”

 

Dave added: “As usual, we will be bringing a big, loud New Zealand support team.”

 

The New Zealand teams contesting the 2020 JJ Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship are:

Honda Marine:   David McDiarmid, Matt Steven, Brad Collins

C-Tech:   Alex Vallings, Sam Trethewey, Matt Coutts

Maersk Line:   Peron Pearse, Eli Liefting, Harry Clark

 

Determined to regain the supremacy they held for many seasons, the local 18-Footer teams will be going all out to win back the coveted trophy and spoil the Honda Marine team’s hope of a third consecutive title.

 

A group of five teams are presently leading the Australian challenge.

 

Recently crowned Australian champion Tech2 is a strong team which has been improving each week since the new boat had her first race in early December.  The recent addition of four-time JJ Giltinan champion bowman Trent Barnabas could give her skipper, Jack Macartney his first JJ Giltinan title.

 

Other top teams include NSW champion Winning Group, which has a multi Giltinan championship-winning crew, and the 2018-2019 Australian champion James Dorron in Shaw & Partners Financial Services.

 

Finport Finance and Smeg have won individual championship races during the current season but just need to be more consistent over the whole regatta to make an even stronger challenge.

 

Race dates are:

Saturday              March 14             Race 1

Sunday                 March 15             Race 2

Tuesday               March 17             Races 3 & 4

Wednesday        March 18             Races 5 & 6

Thursday              March 19             Race 7

Saturday              March 21             Race 8

Sunday                 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

Spectators can see all the teams while they are rigging, then follow the racing on board the club’s spectator ferry, which leaves Double Bay Wharf, alongside the rigging area, at 2pm.

 

Book online through the club’s website www.18footers.com

March 8, 2020

THE LEAGUE’S 18ft SKIFF CLUB CHAMPIONSHIP DECIDER

Sunday’s 18ft Skiff race on Sydney Harbour will decide the Australian 18 Footers League club champion for 2019-2020 season as well as being the final hit-out for the JJ Giltinan Championship, which begins on Saturday, March 14.

The defending championship Shaw & Partners Financial Services team of James Dorron, Harry Bethwaite and Tim Westwood goes into Sunday’s race equal with the consistent The Oak Double Bay-4 Pines team of Aron Everett, Courtney Mahar and Charlie Gundy, on 75 points.

With no discard applying in the 16-race championship, each team will be watching the other carefully as the first one of them to finish could become the championship winner.

Newly crowned Australian champion Tech2 team of Jack Macartney, Charlie Wyatt and Trent Barnabas could spoil the day for both teams, as Tech2 trails the pair by just five points.

As one point is allocated for each finishing position, Tech2 will need to finish five placings ahead of both Shaw & Partners Financial Services and The Oak Double Bay-4 Pines to win the championship on a count back.

Should Tech2 tie with either Shaw & Partners or ‘The Oak’, Tech2 would become the champion on a countback, having won more individual races than the others.

Dorron’s Shaw & Partners team won the last race sailed over a full, championship course only two weeks ago but lost the title won in 2018-2019 when runner-up to Tech2 after last weekend’s racing.

‘The Oak-4 Pines’ was runner-up in both the NSW Championship (behind Winning Group) and the Spring Championship (behind Appliancesonline.com.au) and will be desperate to finally grab a title after such strong performances throughout the season.

The top six placings, and their points, going into Sunday’s race are: Shaw & Partners Financial Services and The Oak Double Bay-4 Pines on 75, Tech2 on 80, Appliancesonline.com.au (Brett Van Munster) on 101, Smeg (Micah Lane) on 104, and Rag & Famish Hotel (Bryce Edwards) on 112.

On Sunday, if the 12-knots South-East wind eventuates, all teams will have a wonderful opportunity for a final to test the speed of their big #1 rigs as they prepare to challenge the defending JJ Giltinan champion Honda Marine team of David McDiarmid, Matt Steven and Brad Collins from New Zealand.

Spectators can see all the teams while they are rigging, then follow the racing on board the club’s spectator ferry, which leaves Double Bay Wharf, alongside the rigging area, at 2pm.

Book online through the club’s website www.18footers.com

March 1, 2020

2020 Australian Championship, Final Result

The Tech2 team of Jack Macartney, Charlie Wyatt and Trent Barnabas became the 2019-2020 Australian 18ft Skiff champions following two more impressive performances in the final two races of the nine-race Championship on Sydney Harbour today.

Tech2 went into the final day with a handy points lead, but the team wanted to finish strongly as it continues the build up to next month’s Giltinan Championship.

After the opening race of the day, Tech2 secured the title and improved the winning margin with a victory in the final race to finish with a total of 19 points, 13 points ahead of defending champions James Dorron, Harry Bethwaite and Tim Westwood, who was replaced for today by Lachlan Gilmour, in Shaw & Partners Financial Services, on 32 points.

Smeg (Micah Lane, Ricky Bridge, Peter Harris) finished in third place on 35 points, followed by Finport Finance (Keagan York) on 42, The Oak Double Bay-4 Pines on 43 and Appliancesonline.com.au on 50.

Today’s opening race was in a 15-18 knots NE wind, over a windward-leeward return course and produced an exciting finish after the Winning Group (John Winning Jr., Seve Jarvin, Sam Newton) looked to have the race at her mercy with a 40s lead over Tech2 at the final windward mark.

Tech2 and Finport Finance gained on the final spinnaker run to the finish but when a harbour ferry crossed the path of the fleet the race took on a different look.

Finport Finance crew (Keagan York, Matt Stenta, Angus Williams) elected to gybe away from Winning Group and Tech2, leaving this pair to ‘fight’ each other while they sailed their own course and grabbed a 2s win over Winning Group, with Tech2 another 5s back in third place.

In the final race, Winning Group again won the start and quickly opened up a clear lead over URM, skippered by Marcus Ashley-Jones, Tech2, Smeg, The Kitchen Maker-Caesarstone (Jordan Girdis) and Dal Zotto (Jack Sprague).

The breeze had increased to around 20-knots and the outgoing tide created conditions which saw the skiffs airborne as they raced downwind to the bottom mark off Clark Island.

Winning Group was again in a strong position after the end of the first lap of the course before a capsize off Bradleys Head forced the team to retire.

Tech2, URM and Smeg then staged a three-boat battle over the final lap of the course before Tech2 crossed the finish line 20s ahead of URM (Marcus Ashley-Jones, Cam Gundy, Lewis Brake), with Smeg just 4s back in third place.

Today’s Race Results, Championship Final Points and images from today’s racing are attached.

Race 16 of the Club Championship will be sailed next Sunday.

Spectators can see all the teams while they are rigging, then follow the racing on board the club’s spectator ferry, which leaves Double Bay Wharf, alongside the rigging area, at 2pm.

Book online through the club’s website www.18footers.co

February 29, 2020

The Oak Double Bay-4 Pines 18ft Skiff team

The Oak Double Bay-4 Pines 18ft Skiff team of Aron Everett, Courtney Mahar and Charlie Gundy are not only the big improvers in the Australian 18 Footers League’s 2019-2020 Season fleet, they are now firmly planted in the top end of the fleet as we move towards the JJ Giltinan Championship, which will be contested by a 24-strong fleet on Sydney Harbour from 14-22 March.

After finishing 10th in the 2019 championship, Everett and his crew went to Lake Garda to compete in the European Championship, and the experience obviously was a great boost to confidence as ‘The Oak’ has been on the pace throughout the entire 2019-2020 season.

The current season began with two moderate performances in the first two races of the seven-race Spring Championship, but the team was soon on-a-roll with a win, two second placings, a third and a fifth in the next five races to finish runner-up to Brett Van Munster’s appliancesonline.com.au in the series.

When the NSW Championship, the season’s first major title, began in November, The Oak Double Bay-4 Pines continued the consistently good form shown during the Spring Championship and was again runner-up in the NSW title.

This time it took the experience of Winning Group’s John Winning Jr., Seve Jarvin and Sam Newton to get the better of The Oak Double Bay-4 Pines.

As the local fleet prepares to take on David McDiarmid’s defending champion Honda Marine team, next month on Sydney Harbour, the 18-boat fleet is presently contesting the nine-race Australian Championship.

Once again, The Oak Double Bay-4 Pines crew has produced consistently good performances, and with just two more short-course races to be sailed on Sunday (March 1) is currently in a group of five teams bunched in the chase behind Australian Championship leader Tech2.

Aron Everett, an airline pilot with QANTAS, deserves the success he is achieving with Courtney Mahar and Charlie Gundy, after having completed eleven seasons in the 18s – his third as a skipper. Before his move to the back of the boat, Aron previously sailed as sheet hand in skiffs skippered by Jonathan Whitty.

Like many Australian sailors, he began as a five-year-old in Sabots, at Hunters Hill Sailing Club, in the mornings then Mirror Dinghys, and later NS14s with his father in the afternoons. He then progressed through Flying 11s and 29ers, where he “competed against plenty of the current 18 sailors.”

Aron says: “Moving from sheet hand to skipper was a steep learning curve, but there’s a wealth of knowledge around the club, and many of the current and past sailors are more than happy to help out when I ask questions.”

“I was lucky to get someone of Courtney’s calibre on the sheet three years ago, now this year Charlie has fitted straight into the crew with his outstanding ability in the bow.”

“The guys work well together and do an outstanding job each week, that’s why we’ve managed to post some strong results so far this season.”

Courtney Mahar is not only a fine sheet hand, he has enthusiasm for sailing and the 18s, and is a very competitive individual.

“Sailing is my first love. I’d like to go sailing every day, and I definitely like to win.”

“I started as a seven-year-old, and I used to watch the 18s on tele when I was a kid. I like to have some fun and the downhill rides in the 18s are the best.”

Commenting on Aron Everett as a skipper: “Az is cool and calm.”

Charlie Gundy is just 21-years-old but already has a wide variety of sailing experience, including three seasons in the 18s before he joined ‘The Oak’ team this season, after finishing 6th in the 2019 Giltinan Championship as part of the Finport Finance team.

His bio of classes includes Flying 11s, Cherubs, 12ft Skiffs, youth match racing, offshore racing and four Sydney-Hobarts.

“Sailing this season with Aron and Courtney has been awesome. They are fun mates to sail with and I’m looking forward to the JJs as well as more sailing with the boys on the mighty Oak-4 Pines.”

Both Courtney Mahar and Charlie Gundy have even greater motivation to be successful at the 2020 JJs as each will be competing against his brother when the fleet lines up in the championship.

Courtney’s brother Elliott will crew with David Hayter on Queenslander. Charlie’s brother Cam is a crew member on Marcus Ashley-Jones’ R Marine Pittwater.

Pushed for a comment about the team’s expectations for the upcoming Giltinan Championship, Everett said: “Everyone is getting faster each race, so we’ll have to keep working as hard as possible to put together a strong regatta.”

“I think consistency is key in a regatta like the JJs, and a solid preparation leading in pays dividends.”

In such a competitive fleet as the upcoming JJs, finishing near the top won’t be easy, but consistency is essential, and ‘The Oak’ team has plenty.

The final two races of the Australian Championship, re-sail of Race 5 as well as Race 9, will be sailed on Sunday over windward-return courses.

Spectators can see all the teams while they are rigging, then follow the racing on board the club’s spectator ferry, which leaves Double Bay Wharf, alongside the rigging area, at 2pm.

Book online through the club’s website www.18footers.com

February 27, 2020

QUEENSLAND 18-FOOTER COMEBACK

Will the three-boat Queensland team of young sailors coming to the 2020 JJ Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship on Sydney Harbour next month (14-22 March), lead to a stronger challenge by the northern Australian State’s once mighty record of development and controversial design during the early history of the class?

The young team is relatively inexperienced in 18ft Skiff racing and will obviously have a hard time beating the best teams in the world but their effort and enthusiasm in the lead up to the championship must be admired.

According to Brisbane Club Vice-Commodore Steven Tapsall, a former leading 18ft Skiff sailor with Robbie Lea in the 1990s: “It’s a conservative start but we have a young group with talent and enthusiasm. Their love of speed and racing is on display most weekends and they often have midweek training sessions to build up their skills.”

The Brisbane 18s rebirth story really began two years ago when Steven Tapsall, Paul O’Malley Jones, Richard Billett and Ben Guymer were keen to nurture high performance skiff classes in Brisbane and saw significant young talent leaving sailing after their development period in the érs and other feeder classes. They wanted to get the 18s on the water so their kids and others could aspire to sail something, big, fast and exciting.

The most experienced member of the team for the 2020 Giltinan Championship is Dave Hayter, who is a four-time Australian Champion in the International 14’ Skiff and currently 5th in the world for the International 14’Skiff.

According to Dave: “I was keen to do a JJs last year, so Elliott Mahar and I hatched a plan, found a third (Alex Watson, who is now running his own boat), washed the dust off the boats, that had been sitting in the shed for about 5 years, and worked out what went with what and what needed to go in the bin.”

“With the club’s approval, we picked the best gear we could find and put the package together for last year’s JJs. It was a huge learning curve and great fun. The club supported us all the way and other teams started to become interested.”

“The second boat hit the water at the start of this season with Alex Watson on the helm, Ben Roxburgh in the front and Cooper Richmond on sheet. Their boat needed some TLC but came together quickly, while the third team wasn’t so fortunate. The boat had been stripped of anything that looked good enough to use so Matt Rogers, Darren Rogers and Steve Wilson had their work cut out.”

“The club then came to their aid with the purchase of new fittings and equipment, but the time was all theirs. They worked tirelessly to re-build the boat, I put the centreboard box back in and then we had three serviceable boats on the water.”

“We put a three year plan together to upgrade our gear, which started with a new #2 rig for my boat and later the purchase of Lumix, and QMC and enough second-hand sails from Sydney to support Alex and Matt’s campaign and to keep all our older boats on the water for a few years to come.”

“It has been a huge effort by the Brisbane 18 Footers club and the sailing group to get our boats ready for the JJs, and as a group we also decided to send one boat to Sydney each week during the Australian Championship as part of the build up to the JJs.”

The Queensland team members for the 2020 JJs have come through a variety of classes into the 18s.

Alex Watson’s Lumix crew has 12ft and 16ft Skiff experience, while 19 years old Queensland 29er champion Matt Rogers’ QMC team has come from a wider variety of classes.

The youth and talent of the team gives us hope of a Queensland revival in the 18s as the State has been such an important ingredient in the 18 Footers history.

Racing began in Brisbane in the mid-1890s before regular interstate contests were held between teams from Queensland, NSW and Western Australia, and the Australian Championship formally established in the 1912-1913 season.

Colin Clark was the most prolific Queensland winner of the official Australian Championship with three victories between 1917-1918 and 1922-1923. In 1921 the Brisbane 18-Footers Club was also officially formed.

By the early 1930s the fleets in NSW and Queensland began to suffer as owners didn’t want to pay the rising costs necessary to replace the big old boats with new ones, and also found it difficult to maintain the number of crew necessary to sail the big boats.

The boats from the “Big Boat Era” became obsolete when Queensland designers began to apply the principles of aerodynamics to boat building which resulted in a radical new type of 18-Footer.

The new boat, Aberdare was a no heel skiff with a 7ft beam and depth of 2ft. She had a lighter hull and smaller rig and carried a crew of 7-8 men, compared to the 12-13 needed in the big boats.

Off the wind, Aberdare produced great speed with mainsail, reaching jib, ringtail and peak head spinnaker and was so fast that she was soon christened “the Galloping Ghost” or “the Queensland Miracle”.

Vic Vaughan, having won four consecutive Australian Championships in Aberdare, between 1933-1934 and 1936-1937, was a dominating figure in 18-Footer racing, but no more than Lance Watts, who also won four national titles between 1931 and 1950.

The success of the new concept was the beginning of the end for the ‘big boats’ but when the Sydney club refused to register the new narrow beam boats for their local sailors, a group of those wanting the new boats formed their own club, which was originally known as the NSW 18 Footers Sailing League (now known as the Australian 18 Footers League).

Queensland started to rebuild its fleet after WW2, and in 1945 decided to race 6ft beam boats. This time the League opposed the move, but it was approved by the SFS. The first of these 6ft beamers, which were designed by Norman Wright and Lance Watts, began to sail in Brisbane in 1946.

These boats were cheaper to build, lighter than the previous 7ft beam boats, needed only a crew of 5-6 compared to 7 or 8, and they were fast.

Eventually, all three of the major Australian 18-Footer clubs got back together but most of the new ideas and top championship contenders were coming from the designs and sheds of people such as Lance and Harold Watts and Norman Wright.

Wright witnessed the advantages of the ideas used on Intrigue and used them when he built Jenny VI, a 3-layer, moulded hull, which became Queensland’s first Giltinan world champion in 1956.

Chine hulls were approved and in 1959 Norman Wright designed the first new 3-handed boat. The new boat was banned in Sydney but was permitted to compete in both international and interstate contests.

Once again, the Brisbane club wanted to build its fleet and asked Norman Wright to design a cheap, easy to build 18. Bob Miller (later known as Ben Lexcen) had a sail loft in the Wright shed and a joint effort with Wright produced a totally new design.

The new boat, Taipan, was a light ply chine, two-thirds decked, with large genoa, inboard rig, no bowsprit, smaller sail area, designed for a crew of three with two on trapeze. She also had heavily flared topsides and had a narrow 4ft 3in beam on the chine.

Taipan had a smaller rig (similar to one used on a Flying Dutchman class boat) and bending spars.

Miller referred to her as a supercharged FD.

Taipan immediately created dramas when Miller took the boat to Auckland for the 1960 Giltinan world Championship.

Because the skiff was decked far in excess of the allowable area of that time, Miller was forced to do a major reconstruction job prior to the start of the regatta which reduced the deck by around fifty per cent. Taipan became vulnerable in choppy conditions and finished only fourth, which included two non-finishes.

Despite the problems experienced by Miller at Auckland, there was little doubt about the design and Miller again teamed up with Wright to build an improved version which was lighter and stronger.

The new boat was named Venom.

There had been no change to the rules of that time. NSW continued its ban of this type of boat despite it was still permitted to compete at an international level.

When Venom contested the 1961 Giltinan world Championship, she dominated the racing and easily won the series, but sadly it was the final big impact the Queenslanders have had on the 18s.

Sam Elms Jr. won three Queensland titles in the early 1970s before Neville Buckley, a two-time Australian 16-footer champion, began a six-consecutive run from 1973-1978 (incl) in Travelodge-Queensland. Doug Trott took over the Travelodge sponsorship on Buckley’s retirement and won the title in 1978-1979 in a skiff named Park Royal.

The Lysaght company became a major sponsor of 18ft Skiff racing throughout Australia and had their best result with the Queensland skiff. Geoff Berg won four Queensland Championships and Robbie Lea won two in the 1980s in skiffs named Lysaght Colorbond-Queensland. Robbie Lea also won a third title in Kingfisher Bay Resort.

Another strong competitor in the 1980s was David Lambourne, in skiffs which raced as Skreenkraft, but it wasn’t until 1989-1990 that David won the first of his two Queensland Championships.

In the mid-1990s, a co-ordinated program saw new sponsors such as Bank of Queensland, Optus World, Bundaberg Rum and Hope Island Gold Coast introduced to the local fleet and some talented young sailors organized to sail the skiffs.

There have been a few individual teams entered in the JJ Giltinan Championship by Queensland in recent years but there is a definite feel that this latest group of young sailing talent is prepared to do the hard work required to get their state back into the competitive zone.

The Queensland team for the 2020 JJ Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship is:

Queenslander: Dave Hayter, Nathanial Dutton, Elliott Mahar

Lumix: Alex Watson, Cooper Richmond, Ben Roxburgh

QMC: Matt Rogers, Darren Rogers, Steve Wilson