Musto Performance Skiff

Musto Performance Skiff Sail Sandy Regatta Report October 20th-21st 2012 Bookmark and Share

Article: Tim Hill

Returning from his 4th place at the Weymouth Worlds, Jon Newman stamped his class on the opening regatta of the Australian summer by taking out the Sail Sandy Open Meeting last weekend, the 20th and 21st of October.

Marcus Hamilton, Chris Piele, Robin Dayes (launching his new Musto Skiff), Sabre class legend Wayne Bates and Tim Hill, wiping baby vomit from his rash top, joined Jon Newman for the regatta.

The forecast 10-15 knots sea breeze failed to appear on Saturday, leaving the fleet to admire their reflections in the water as they drifted around in the tide waiting for the committee. Racing was abandoned at 3pm; on cue a light sea breeze materialized that built to 10 knots, leaving the red faced committee to announce a 9am start Sunday morning underneath fluttering racing abandoned pennants.
Sunday's ferocious 20-25 knot forecast held off until lunchtime, allowing 4 races in flat-ish water and building breeze that began at 15 knots reaching 20 knots at times.

Marcus Hamilton got proceedings underway by leading to the top mark in race 1, followed by Tim Hill and Jon Newman. Marcus and Jon went right down the run whereas Tim elected to go left, letting Jon through at the leeward mark. Tim picked up Jon up the work rounding behind Marcus in second, before returning the favour down the run. Marcus won, Jon second, Tim third.

Race 2 saw Robin Dayes pip Jon to the top mark, followed by Tim then Marcus. Jon took the lead at the bottom mark, followed by Marcus then Tim in close pursuit. Marcus took the left hand side of the beat, Tim and Jon the right. Positions remained unchanged at the finish with Jon taking the win from Marcus with Tim in third.

Jon was quick out of the blocks in Race 3, leading to the top mark followed by Marcus and then Chris Piele. Jon and Marcus went to the right hand side of the run with Tim in third having overtaken Chris and Robin at the pin. Marcus went left up the second beat, the rest of the fleet hit the right. Jon led at the top mark and went on to record a comfortable win from Marcus. Tim recovered to finish a close third from Robin and Chris having parked his boat firmly in reverse at the top of the second beat as he tacked to the layline.

Marcus Hamilton came out firing in Race 4, leading to the top mark from Jon and Tim. He held his lead to the bottom mark with Jon pushing hard, Tim in third. Marcus again went left, and tacked back to hold a loose cover on Jon. On his tack to the layline his trapeze ring snapped, dropping him into the water and briefly capsizing the boat. Jon slipped through to lead, Marcus rounded in front of Tim. Jon went on to record the win, however the Golden Boot award goes to Marcus Hamilton, who, despite his broken trapeze wire and tiller extension, managed to hold Tim off by sailing low and deep through the rising waves, made the gybe, but capsized two boats short of the finishing line, letting Tim through for second.

Back on the beach, the sun came out and the breeze roared in, leaving the Musto Skiff division to call it a day and elect not to join the race committee in trying for 3 more races in increasingly bleak and nasty weather conditions.

Congratulations to Jon who comfortably held the rest of the fleet. Congratulations also to Wayne Bates who managed to complete his first Musto Skiff regatta in champagne conditions that try all newcomers - and welcome to David Taylor, who completed his purchase of Jon Newman's boat and has now joined the fleet.

The next Open Meeting will be held at Blairgowrie on the 10th and 11th of November.

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