Musto Performance Skiff

The 3rd Australian Musto Skiff Championship 2013 - Day 1 Bookmark and Share

Venue : Mounts Bay Sailing Club - Perth (AUS) This is the venue for the next World Championships

Report: various

Photos: Rick Steuart

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The 3rd Australian Must oskiff Championship got underway in warm, sunny conditions and clear skies. 3rd place getters in each heat provide these race reports.

RACE 1 report by Marcus Hamilton
The first race of the Perth nationals got underway cleanly after an initial general recall by the over excited fleet. The fleet split with Denis Jones/ Marcus hamilton/ Tim hill/Robin Dayes looking for the fabled left hand shift. The balance of the fleet working the shifts to the right. When the fleets converged it was the Western Australians who were shining. Arthur Brett in the lead, followed by Jones & Thor Schoenoff.

The downwind proved to be volatile for the holding a leading position in the fleet. Will Phillips, Jon Newman & Hamilton found pressure and caught up to the sterns of Brett & Jones. Unfortunately Brett suffered gear failure at the bottom gate, as the 5 other lead boats rounded the gate for an evenly matched second work.

Jones & Hamilton got stuck in little pressure on the left, as the pressure retreated to the right, where Newman and Phillips extended a lead. Phillips had an uncharacteristic capsize, which gave Newman an unassailable lead.

The final downwind was a race for 2nd between Phillips, Hamilton, jones & Mark Whittington. Phillips prevailed, Hamilton held for 3rd, Jones was 4th and Whittington 5th

RACE 2 by Mark Whittington
Race 2 of the Musto Skiff National championships was held in 5-20 knots in sharp windshifts with large pressure variations over the course - with boats gaining and losing hundreds of meters by picking the wrong tack.

The start got away under individual recall. Many boats responded, thinking they were over and restarting. This didnít make much difference with the wind dropping out just after the start. The first shift was right - you had to get one of the two - not OCS or get the right shift. If you didnít get either then you were in trouble.

Will and AB worked the right side of the course nicely to round very near each other in 1st and 2nd, while Marcus, Richard, Mark and Thor were close behind, some big puffs came down the first run, making boats sail directly at the bottom mark at times.

Second beat had some big changes in angle, and getting out of phase could cost hundreds of meters. Arthur again worked the right hand shoreline, while Ritchie headed hard left, finding the left hand shift, crossing Arthur and taking the lead. Ritchie gybe set at the top mark while Arthur went for a bear away set. Ritchie took off in pressure to take a 100 meter lead.

Mark rounded next, with Will, Marcus, Thor and Tim in close pursuit, in a huge puff, the lead boats just ahead of the puff with the boats chasing firmly in the pressure line. All chose to gybe set at the top mark.

Ritchie travelled to the left hand gybe point and capsized 50 meters from the line, costing him a top 5 finish. Arthur Brett went on to take the win.

Meanwhile the pursuing group had compressed into a tight, super fast bunch approaching the finish line at speed. Mark gybed onto starboard too early, gybing again to finish on port while Marcus, Will and Thor were approaching the line on starboard.

Tim slipped through the end of the pack on port, gybing twice to finish at the boat end. Will was held out by Marcus at the pin, gybing onto port to cross Marcus and claim second, Mark crossed next to claim third, Tim slipped across in fourth, while Thor powered in calling starboard on Marcus, luffing around him to cross the line fifth. Marcus doused his kite, re-rounded to course side, performed his penalty and crossed again to lose 5 places.

Andy, our trusty race officer, found himself reciting a fifteen digit number as the pack crossed the line in less than 3 seconds.

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