A team of seven girls from Hobart’s Fahan School have won the all-female division of the Australian Secondary Schools Team Racing Championships at Blairgowrie Yacht Squadron in Victoria.
Competing two-up in a team of three Pacer dinghies, the teenagers sailed a brilliant final to beat the Ascham School from Sydney, 2-0 in the best of three.
The champion team comprised DSS Members Chloe Abel and Meg Goodfellow along with Lily Zeeman, Amy Potter, Laura Cooper, Anabelle Zeeman and Emily Nicholson.
Their coach is Lizzi Roundtree, the coach at Sandy Bay Sailing Club where most of the girls sail on a regular basis in various youth sailing classes while some race with the Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania off-the-beach division.
They also compete in Hobart’s active inter-school team racing against teams of mostly boys.
A number of the older girls crew in the high performance SB20 sports boat class with adult skippers although several helm these boats.
Sandy Bay Sailing Club will host the 2019 Australian Secondary Schools Team Racing Championship on the River Derwent.
The open championship went to the Westminster School in South Australia with a win from defending champions, Scotch College WA, 3-1. Skippers of the winning team were Alex Higgins, Matt Meany and Angus Higgins
The Friends School won the petit final from Brighton Grammar after the Hobart school had led the overall standings after two days of round-robin sail between the 24 teams from all Australian states.
Sailing for Friends were Hugo Hamilton William Sargent, Rupert Hamilton and Brendan Crisp as helmsmen with Eddie Reid, Oscar O’Donoghue, Oscar Pritchard and Daniel Maree as their crew.
Friends had finished at the top of the leader board at the conclusion of the Swiss league round-robin, however, the finals threw up a few surprises.
Friends worked hard to make their way through a couple of hurdles, but ended up bowing out in the semi to the eventual runners-up, Scotch College WA.
Their cross-town rivals, Hutchins School, had similar issues and bowed out of the semi-finals after coming into the finals with a double chance in fourth place.
They then raced off against Friends in the petit final to decide third place overall but lost to the strong Hobart team.
Team sailing is where three boats compete as a team and their individual results are added to find the winning race and ultimately the championship.
Over the championship, each of the 24 teams raced against each other in short and short races which required good sailing, a good knowledge of the rules and some cunning.
Words: Down Under Sail + Peter Campbell
Photos: Down Under Sail
17 July 2018