Peter Merrington and his team of Ian McKillop and Steve “Mothy” Jarvin on First Tracks AUS1485 slipped into first place after the second day of the Etchells Australian Nationals sailed on Friday 11 June with scores of , 1, 8, 2, 8 (19).
It was also the first day of the Etchells Australasian Championships which are sailed each year from Mooloolaba Yacht Club. With all races from today onwards counting, it is great to see a different leader in each event; Tranquility Base AUS1377 skippered by Rob Weir leads the Australasian Championship, on a countback 3, 7 (10).
There are four more races scheduled for the National Championship, but a series has now been completed with the minimum of four races safely completed, especially given the forecast for today and tomorrow. One drop came into play at the end of yesterday’s racing.
The Australasian Championship, which is sailed from Mooloolaba Yacht Club each year has six races scheduled, with a series at three races, and a drop coming in at four races.
The fleet were postponed on shore, and then on the water for just over two hours where the race committee saw everything from the south at 180 degrees, right through the West and North-West when it eventually settled in the North-Easterly quadrant.
Race 4 got away at 1340 hours, set at 030 degrees with a 0.8 nautical mile windward leg for a two-lap course with just 5 knots of breeze.
Robert Mann and his team on Lucy AUS1082 were the leaders around the first top mark, followed by Rob Weir’s Tranquility Base AUS1377 and Mike Morris’ Northern Havoc AUS1119.
The order for the top three was identical around the bottom gate, however, some sailors did opt to go right, and others left which saw a shake up in the results at the second top mark.
There was a change of course at the gate to move the course left, which had been the general pattern for the building breeze.
Regatta leaders, McGain’s Ciao AUS1244 and Merrington’s First Tracks AUS1485 rounded the final top mark in first and second, with Tranquility Base AUS1377 slipping back to third.
These positions held to the finish; Billy Merrington and his team did have a good crack at taking the win with a fair bit of match racing coming into the finish.
The second start of the day, for Race 5, got away reasonably quickly. The breeze built to 7-8 knots and settled in from a northerly direction. The course was set at 000 with a windward leg of 0.9 nautical miles for the two-lap course.
Nev Wittey and his team on board Yandoo XX AUS868 started at the boat and tacked early to the right and took an early lead in the race.
They led around the top mark from Mike Morris and his team on Northern Havoc AUS1119 followed by Chris Anderson’s Standin Line AUS1021.
The top seven places did not change from the final top mark to the finish, with Yandoo XX AUS868 taking the gun, Northern Havoc AUS1119 in second, and Jason Ward’s Whisper AUS1457 rounding out the top three.
Following a low-pressure system moving across the south of Australia this week, a high pressure bubble has settled in over us in southern Queensland for the weekend.
Racing is currently postponed ashore while we wait to see what happens this afternoon.
A big thanks to all of our volunteers who are doing such a great job in challenging conditions both on and off the water!
Watch the live feeds on Adventures of a Sailor Girl.
1st CIAO Douglas McGain
2nd FIRST TRACKS Peter Merrington
3rd TRANQUILITY BASE Rob Weir
1st YANDOO XX Neville Wittey
2nd NORTHERN HAVOC Mike Morris
3rd WHISPER Jason Ward