Club Championship Race 11

With the 2017 JJ Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship just six days away, today’s Race 11 of the Australian 18 Footers League’s Club Championship on Sydney Harbour took on even greater importance than usual for the 19 teams contesting the event.

A 10-15 knots ESE wind allowed all teams to set their big #1 rigs.

The recently crowned Australian champion Thurlow Fisher Lawyers team of Micha el Coxon, Dave O’Connor and Trent Barnabas grabbed the lead soon after the start and, but for a brief period on the first spinnaker run, were never headed as they powered to a 2m53s victory.

Asko Appliances (Marcus Ashley-Jones, Seve Jarvin and Jeronimo Harrison) recovered from a slow first windward leg to finish in second place, 44s ahead of Peroni (Nick Daly, John Walton and Steve Thomas).

Series leader Smeg (Lee Knapton) also came back from a slow start to finish fourth, ahead of Yandoo (John Winning) and Coopers 62-Rag & Famish Hotel (Jack Macartney).

With only one more race to be sailed in the championship, Smeg leads with 32 points. Coopers 62-Rag & Famish Hotel is next on 58 and Yandoo on 60.

After scoring an impressive win in strong winds last Sunday, then adding today’s victory in totally opposite conditions, Thurlow Fisher Lawyers has ‘firmed’ in the betting on another win for Michael Coxon in the JJ Giltinan Championship.

Thurlow Fisher led by 15s from Peroni at the first windward mark before the long spinnaker run down the harbour.

Skippers had a wide variety of opinions on the best course to take and positions changed continually down the run

Ash Rooklyn left his final gybe on Noakes Youth longer than the other skippers and the move was a winner as Noakes Youth reached the bottom mark with a 15s lead over Thurlow Fisher.

A fouled spinnaker of the Noakes Youth cost the young team at least three positions and they were never able to recover the loss.

Asko Appliances began to claw her way back towards the lead and looked a real threat as she moved to within 35s of Thurlow Fisher Lawyers at the Clark Island windward mark.

The experienced Thurlow crew remained faultless over the next three legs of the course and extended the lead to more than one minute and certain victory.

Peroni, Yandoo and Line 7 (Jonathan Whitty) had a great battle for most of the course and improved their prospects for the upcoming championship.

David Witt returns to skipper next week and New Zealand’s champion Yamaha (Dave McDiarmid) will be out to make up for a one point loss last year.

The 2017 JJ Giltinan Championship will be sailed from 25 February-5 March.
(Sponsored by The Winning Group)

Race Dates:
Race 1 Saturday 25 February
Race 2 Sunday 26 February
Race 3 Tuesday 28 February
Race 4 Wednesday 1 March
Race 5 Thursday 2 March
Race 6 Saturday 4 March
Race 7 Sunday 5 March

A spectator ferry will follow each of the seven races in the championship, leaving Double Bay Public Wharf, alongside the clubhouse, at 2.30pm on each race day.