December 10, 2014

U.S. Champions in Sydney

J.J. Giltinan champion (2002 and 2003) Howie Hamlin and U.S. 100ft Maxi Yacht Comanche were on Sydney Harbour last Sunday despite the horrendous storms which battered most sailing classes.

The ever-professional attitude of Howie Hamlin brought him to Sydney where he recently had brand new North Sails built, apparently, to an Iain Murray design.

This was the first stage of preparations for the 2015 J.J. Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship, which will be sailed on Sydney Harbour from 14-22 February.

Howie competed in the Australian 18 Footer League’s Club Championship race by invitation, but the bad weather shortened the hit out when the storms hit midway through the race.

The 100ft Comanche, in Sydney for the Sydney-to-Hobart Yacht Race, was in the vicinity of the start of the 18 Footer race and showed the enormity of its size alongside the 18ft Skiffs.

(Photos by Chris Part)

October 8, 2014

2014-2015 Season Begins Next Sunday

The 2014-2015 Season of 18ft Skiff Racing will begin next Sunday(12 October) when the Australian 18 Footers League stages a 3-Buoys club trophy race on Sydney Harbour.

Seventeen teams have entered for the new season with the reigning champions Seve Jarvin, Sam Newton and Scott Babbage (Gotta Love It 7) the early favourites to retain their titles in the major events later in the season.

Despite the favouritism, Team Seven will be under a lot of pressure from several top teams in new boats and with new equipment.

Thurlow Fisher Lawyers, skippered by former JJ Giltinan and Australian champion Michael Coxon, and Coopers 62-Rag & Famish Hotel (Jack Macartney) have been the biggest threats to ‘7’ in recent seasons and will again be the main challengers in 2014-2015.

Smeg, with a new, but experienced 18 Footer crew to the ‘Smeg’ skiff, Appliancesonline (a new skiff with former Australian champion Micah Lane at the helm), another new skiff Asko Gorenje (Marcus Ashley-Jones) and Lumix (Jonathan Whitty) will also be strong contenders.

The current Australian 16 Footer champion Lee Knapton joins the Mojo Wine team, replacing Chris Nicholson, and ensures the team will remain at the pointy end of the fleet.

The experienced Grant Rollerson, who has been skippering 18ft Skiffs for the past decade, joins Simon Nearn’s De’Longhi crew and is expected to give this team a great boost.


Boat Name Player
Thurlow Fisher Lawyers Michael Coxon
Yandoo John Winning
Asko Gorenje Marcus Ashley-Jones
De’Longhi Simon Nearn Micah Lane
Coopers 62-Rag & Famish Hotel Jack Macartney
Gotta Love It 7 Seve Jarvin
Smeg David Witt
Pure Blonde Nick Daly
Mojo Wine Lee Knapton
Lumix Jonathan Whitty Keagan York
The Kitchen Maker John Sweeny
Noakes Sean Langman
Haier Appliances Pedro Vozone
Ilve Ollie Hartas
Fisher & Paykel Rob Flanagan

Dates for the major championships are:

  • JJ Giltina Championship
  • NSW Championship(five races)
  • Australian Championship(Brisbane) 20-23 March

Frank Quealey
Australian 18 Footers League