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Hobart’s yacht racing fleet has a prominent newcomer, 1998 Sydney Hobart Yacht Race overall winning skipper Ed Psaltis with his Sydney 36, Midnight Rambler. (more…)

Russian sailor Vasily Grigoriev, sailing MST, has finished first across the line in race one of the 2018 SB20 World Championship on Hobart’s River Derwent. (more…)

French youth sailors showed their sportsboat skills on the opening day of the SB20 Pre-Worlds regatta on Hobart’s River Derwent today, with 2015 world champion Robin Follin heading the leader board and Hugo Feydit third in the standings. (more…)

Hobart yachtsman Don Calvert gave himself an early 82nd birthday gift today with a convincing double win with his 33-year-old yacht Intrigue in the Combined Clubs pennant race on the Derwent. (more…)

Tasmania’s Export Roo, skippered by Michael Cooper, has lost the 2017 SB20 world championship title by just two points after a final day of frustrating competition on The Solent, off Cowes, England.

In a surprise result, prominent British yachtsman Jerry Hill came from fifth place going into the last Gold fleet race day to snatch overall victory with a win in the only race sailed.

Despite the last race loss, Export Roo sailed a fine series against an international fleet of 79 boats. The performance of Cooper and his crew of David Chapman and Gerry Mitchel augers well for the next SB20 worlds, to be sailed on Hobart’s River Derwent next January.

The new world champions celebrate at Cowes.

In between sailing, the Tasmanian crews have been promoting the Hobart worlds with European sailors and are confident at least 20 boats will be shipped here to join the local fleet of 45 SB20s making a total fleet of 65 plus.

Just one race was sailed on The Solent on the final day, in light winds, with prominent British SB20 sailor Jerry Hill clinching victory with a win in Sportsboatworld.com.

The light, shifty breeze held out long enough for team Sportsboat.com to secure a strong lead before the rest of the Gold fleet well into a windless hole.  Sadly, a further race was not possible, giving Export Roo no opportunity to regain the overall lead.

Team Export Roo at the RYS.

Hill had a net score in the Gold fleet racing of 32 points with placings of 5-13-4-1-1 discarding his qualifying score of 21 points.

Export Roo placed 3-2-10-24-14 after going into the finals with a qualifying score of 5.

Third place went to the French boat Give Me Five (Robin Follin) with a net 39 points.

Jerry Hill had indicated earlier that he will coming to Hobart to  contest the 2018 worlds on the Derwent, and now he has to defend his world title.

Next best placed of the Tasmanian boats was Porco Rosso (Elliott Noye) which placed 13th overall, finishing 10th in the final Gold fleet race.

Aussies a the Royal Yacht Squadron, Cowes/

Difficult Woman (Rob Gough) finished 18th overall, Black (Nick Rogers) 23rd and the RSYS entrant Brazen (Jervis Tilly) 33rd in the Gold fleet.

In the silver fleet Hypertronics (Stephen Catchpool) finished 11th overall with a third in the last race. Smigger (Andrew Smith) placed 16th, placing ninth in the last race.

The Australian team of Export Roo, Porco Rosso and Difficult Woman placed second to Great Britain in the Nations Cup, Nick Rogers in Black placing fourth overall in the Masters results and Porco Rosso (Elliott Noye) finished fifth out of 62 boats for the Corinthian trophy.

Words:  Peter Campbell

Photos:  Australian SB20 team

2 September 2017

 

Eight Australians, seven from Tasmania, are among the 80-plus international helmsmen who will contest the 2017 SB20 one-design sportsboat world championship in the UK next week.

Britain’s most exclusive yacht club, the Royal Yacht Squadron at Cowes, is conducting the championship on The Solent,  the intensely tidal, sandbank-strewn waterway between the Isle of Wight and the South Coast of England.

Apart from sailing to win, the role of the Hobart sailors will be to ‘hard sell’ the 2018 worlds to be sailed on the River Derwent in January next.  To be run jointly by the Royal Yacht of Tasmania and Derwent Sailing Squadron, a fleet of at least 65 boats is being predicted.

Porco Rosso placed a close secind SB20 grand slam at Cowes Week.

The 2017 SB20 worlds start on Monday, 28 August (UK time) and run through to the following Friday, 1 September.  Twelve races have been scheduled and because of the size of the fleet the RYS may elect to divide it into two qualifying fleets.

The Australian boats entered are:  Black (Nick Rogers), Brazen (Jervis Tilly),  Difficult Woman (Rob Gough), Export Roo (Michael Cooper), Hypertronics (Stephen Catchpool), Phantom Menace (Andrew Smith) and Porco Rosso (Elliott Noye).

All are from River Derwent fleet except Tilly who sails out of the Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron.

Another prominent SB20 sailor from Hobart, Paul Burnell, will helm a British yacht Marvel, as he did in the recent Cowes Week SB20 Grand Slam.

As a lead-up to the worlds, four other Tasmanian crews contested the Grand Slam with Elliott Noye steered Porto Rosso to a close second to the British yacht Xcellent, scoring two firsts, two seconds and four third places, beaten for first overall by just two points.

Close tacking off Cowes.

Michael Cooper finished a close third in Export Roo, also winning one race, Australian SB20 class president Stephen Catchpool placed ninth in the 31-boat fleet with Hypertronics. Andrew Smith, sailing a boat called Smigger, finished 17 overall.

Rob Gough’s final preparation for the SB20 worlds was to compete in the International Moth worlds on Italy’s Lake Garda where he again the won the world masters championship in the foiler Moths.

Nick Rogers, who introduced the SB20 class to Hobart, is expected to be a strong contender of a new boat called Black.  He has won many championships in SB20 as well as world championships in other classes.

While the majority of entries for the worlds are from the UK, other nations represented include Ireland, Portugal, France, Australia, Singapore, Russia, The Netherlands, Germany, Abu Dhabi/Dubai and Italy.

Words:  Peter Campbell

Photos:  Jane Austin

26 August 2017

 

 

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