Musto Performance Skiff

The 3rd Australian Musto Skiff Championship 2013 - Day 5 Bookmark and Share

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

Report: various

Photos: Rick Steuart

See all the photos here >>>

With no racing possible on Day 4, 3 races were scheduled for Day 5, with a steadily building sea breeze forecast for the middle off the day.


The fleet left the beach in light conditions, the wind swinging from gradient to sea breeze direction and settling in at 8 knots as the fleet started.

The breeze swung right off the line, favouring boats at the boat end, before bending back to the left as the leaders approached the port tack lay line. Newman, Hill, Green, Sutherland and Phillips led the fleet back to the starboard approach and onto the first run. Newman found pressure on the right hand side of the run to lead to the bottom gate from Phillips and Hill.

The second beat followed the same pattern as the first. Hill and Newman took s short hitch to the right, tacked back to the left while Phillips headed immediately to the left hand side. The wind shifted left and strengthened, Phillips making up ground to round in second behind Newman, Hill and Thor following.

Newman held his lead to the finish, while behind him boats gybing early back to the centre of the course passed Phillips leaving him 5th over the line. Hill was 2nd, Thor 3rd and Sutherland 4th.

The breeze freshened to 12 knots at the start of Race 9, shifting to the right again favouring boats at the boat end. Hill and Newman crossed the fleet while Robertson headed to the right hand side of the course. Hill and Newman tacked to cross Robertson on a band of pressure, approaching the starboard tack lay line as the wind suddenly built to 25 knots.

Newman bore away in a cloud of spray at the top mark and gybed while Hill held on on starboard trying to settle his boat. Robertson followed with the of the fleet close behind.

Hill swam briefly on the gybe. Newman reached in to set his kite, ploughed along the the nose in, stepped back to pull the bow out, reached in again, nearly lost it once more and elected to ride the gust out to the bottom mark without setting. The rest of the fleet attempted hoists, gybes and drops to varying degrees of success. Thor managed a gybe set and rode Newman down to round close behind in the ride of the regatta. Hill righted his boat, left his kite in the bag and rounded 3rd, with Hamilton and Phillips close behind.

The breeze stayed in at 20-25 knots. Newman's tiller extension detached from his tiller in his tack to the top mark and he swam, giving the lead to Thor. Hill went right, Phillips went left, following Thor to the top mark with Hill behind. Thor kept his kite in the bag, Phillips set and swam on the gybe, Hill kept his kite down also, made the gybe and finished second, Phillips third, Hamilton fourth, Newman fifth.

Race 10 was epic. 20-25 knots with few lulls and a short chop ricocheting off the headlands making gybing very difficult. The fleet all headed left to the lay line on the first beat, Newman rounding first from Hamilton. Some boats set kites down the run, some didn't, some swam on drops, others on gybes, others on tacks. Newman held it together to lead to the finish, followed by Phillips, Hill, Hamilton and Thor in fifth.

The final results saw just crowned Australian 49er Champion, Will Phillips pip his former crewmate, Jon Newman by just one point. Tim Hill's consistent sailing on the final day lifted him into 3rd overall, one point in front of Marcus Hamilton with promising newcomer Mark Whittington in fifth.

Many thanks to Thor, Chris and the growing WA fleet for putting on a great event and Mounts Bay Yacht Club for making it possible. Special thanks goes to our Race Officer, Andy Curnow, who negotiated the unusual weather conditions and managed to give us a full series in fair racing conditions. The next nationals will be in Victoria, at a venue to be decided later in the year.

Full results are here >>>

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