Top class fleet entered for DSS Winter Series

An excellent fleet, in quantity and quality has been entered for the opening race of the Derwent Sailing Squadron/Battery World Winter Series, which starts on Sunday.

In change from recent winter series, races will start and finish off Castray Esplanade, with ‘Biddy’ Badenach again the race officer. The first division of the 23-boat fleet starts at 9.40am.

Rolex Sydney Hobart overall winner in 2013, Mike Pritchard’s Cookson 50 Oskana, heads Division 1 with Wayne Banks-Smith’s Farr 40 Wargames likely to keep pace with Oskana in light breezes.

However, fresh to strong southerly winds have been forecast for Sunday.  The latest BOM forecast is for 25-40 km/hour winds freshening to 35 to 45 km/hour during Sunday morning.

Australian Yachting Championship winner Philosopher and her crew are using the DSS Winter Series as the start of their campaign to retain the IRC Division 3 national championship on Melbourne’s Port Phillip next January.

Also in the sights of owner/skipper Shaun Tiedeman is the Riversdale Wines Launceston to Hobart Yacht Club in late December, the first real long offshore race for the Sydney 36cr.

“We are using the Winter Series to tune up the boat and train up young crew members who are keen to do the L2H race as well as harbour pennant races,” Tiedemann said today.

“We also aim to do better in the summer pennants, although we did quite well considering we missed several races whilst competing in the Australian Yachting IRC Championships in Melbourne.

Tiedemann,  who is general manager of the DSS, was delighted with the response for the Winter Series. “It’s an exceptionally good line-up for Division 1 and also for Division 2,” he added.

Unlike Hobart’s summer pennant racing on the Derwent which is a combined clubs event, the winter race series are run individually by Bellerive Yacht Club, the Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania and the Derwent Sailing Squadron on alternative Sunday mornings.

Sunday’s DSS opening race has attracted an excellent fleet of 23 boats, with Sydney Hobart racer Oskana, Mike Pritchard’s canting keel Cookson 50 heading Division 1.

Keen to outpace to the bigger boat, particularly in lighter winds, is Wayne Banks-Smith’s Farr 40 Wargames while strong PHS handicap contenders in Division 1 include Philosopher, the Mumm 36 B&G Advantage (Jeff Cordell), the classic 8-metre yacht Juanita (Jock Young), Zephyr (Ian Johnston), Whistler, David Aplin’s MBD36, Neil Snare’s NSX38 Winstead Wines and the Fred Barrett designed-and-sailed sports boat, Fang to the Max.

Only one SB20 has entered the DSS Winter Series, Phil Reid’s Mind Games, while a newcomer to Division 3 is Mimi, Keven Jacobson’s Jeanneau Sun Odyssy 369.

Words:  Peter Campbell

Photos: Alex McKinnon and Peter Watson

15 June 2018

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