News & Media


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July 7, 2021 worldsadmin0

Seeking “Expressions of Interest” to campaign an Etchells in the 21/22 season.

Entries close Saturday July 31st
Our trial loaner boat program, starting in August 2021 in the lead up to the 21-22 season, will have boats available to those wanting to put a club racing program together. There is a huge upswing of female participation in sailing at RQ and combined clubs, Brisbane Etchells would like to nurture and create further opportunities for women, as skippers of their own Etchells program or crewing in a mixed team.

Our Objective

Our primary objective is to get more people out racing Etchells on a regular basis throughout the club season and provide accessible opportunities to learn to race in what we consider to be the best one-design class in world.

How it will Work

  • We use the 2021-2022 season as a trial of this program.
  • The Etchells Fleet committee are reaching out to possible boat owners with available boats to ask if they are interested in chartering their boat for the season. We have a few already available and are hoping to add more in the coming weeks.
  • Pending submissions, we would like to have at least two (2) female teams or mixed crews with a female skipper, if we manage to get more boats available then we would open it to both male and female nominations.
  • The Etchells fleet committee (in collaboration with the boat owners) then select suitable skippers from the nominations:
    • Preference would be given to experienced sailors, who would like to extend their skills into one design racing. They may be active in the RQ Elliot program or keelboat racing programs.
    • We welcome all nominations, especially those who are keen to grow their knowledge, commit to weekly racing, have fun and are willing to learn.

TRAINING

We don’t want to just throw participants in the program in the deep end, we will do our best to provide training seasons, at least every fortnight from our pool of existing and ‘semi-retired’ skippers to get up to speed with all things Etchells and one-design racing – building confidence and knowledge is what it is all about.

Key members of the Etchells fleet will provide fortnightly Saturday morning training (before club racing starts) where possible to the new teams to get them confident with sailing and racing Etchells.

Conditions of Program Participants

There is an expectation that a team will:

  • Commit to racing in at least 70-80% of RQ season point club races.
  • Respect and value the Etchells they have chartered as though they own it.
  • Sail with a safety-first approach in compliance with the Racing Rules of Sailing (RRS).
  • Respect the Royal Queensland and Brisbane Etchells Fleet volunteers, we all do this because we love the sport.
  • Work closing with the Etchells Fleet committee throughout the trial.
  • Skippers and Crew must become financial members RQYS and the Australian Etchells Association and have a valid Australian Sailing number.
  • The intention is that program participants are supported by the Etchells Fleet, but they still need to ‘carry their own bags’ so to speak, being responsible for organising your crew and getting your boat on the water each week.  We will do our best to help you get crew if you are having difficulty
  • Have fun and enjoy the season.

What does it Cost?

We trying to keep this trial as simple as possible from a financial perspective, whilst keeping the costs down, whilst ensuring the owner’s are covered for their generosity to the program.

Your investment:

  • $1800/boat for the season, paid directly to the boat owner + general running repairs throughout the season are to be covered by the loanee. You will also need to provide your own compass and personal safety requirements.
  • Your boat’s entry into the RQ season points and/or additional regatta entry fees such as the Brisbane Fleet Championships or State Championships should you choose to enter.

The Brisbane Etchells Fleet will also contribute up to $1500/loaner boat to ensure Category 7 safety compliance and to get the boat base level race ready.

(The $1800 fee helps cover yearly insurance costs (Boat Owner must have Third Party Personal and Property Liability Insurance cover of a minimum $10,000,000 with racing cover) and a small contribution to hardstand costs. Note that this obviously doesn’t cover all the costs of owning an Etchells and keeping it on the hardstand, but it does help reduce the ongoing costs for an owner)

Nominate your Entry Here

To find out more please don’t hesitate to call Jason Hawkins (the Fleet Captain) on 0407 160 900.

 


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November 6, 2020 John Curnow0
The Front Bar after Race Four. Photo Credit: Emily Scott

The 2020 Etchells Queensland State Championship was won by The Front Bar (AUS 1317). On board were Australian Sailing Squad member, Joel Turner, Ray Smith, and skippered by one of the Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron’s most notable members, Brad Ginnivan.

Ginnivan is certainly a character amongst characters, but so giving of his time and energy, as well as innumerable items for the club from his business, Moreton Bay Signs.  A tireless ball of energy with strong sense of humour, Ginnivan was quick to recount just how they secured Turner for the regatta.

“A while ago, I was MC for a charity auction, and one of the items up for grabs was sail with Joel. So I was encouraged to put an auctioneer’s bid in to secure the opportunity, and we won. It’s taken until now to make it happen, but he was brilliant. Both he and Ray were great. Both of them called the shots uphill, and I just steered. Joel took care of tactics downhill and to win with a race to spare was just brilliant”, said Ginnivan.

Brad Ginnivan’s The Front Bar on Day One. Photo Credit: Emily Scott

“Our goal was to be in the top five of every race, which we accomplished, except for last where we were ninth. We were eight kilos underweight, and I had put in a new Whale Spars mast that had only done six races before the championship. I also pulled out a brand new North Sails main from the shed, and we used our existing jibs from the (2018) Brisbane Worlds.”

“We had traditional headsail sheeting by the way, and we might have been slightly lower in some instances, but our pace was awesome. We also used our (mast) chocks a bit more as well. Ray made me take my watch off and it was all about looking forward for me. He’s terrific and has now won three of the last four Queensland States.”

Part of the fleet coming back downwind. Photo credit: Emily Scott

“Friday was just beautiful with 10-14 knots, and I remember how we won race two after a gybe set at the top set us up marvellously. Saturday blew in at 25 knots and then some. We achieved 16-18 knots downhill at one point. David Turton (who was ahead of us) recounted to me that he had said to his crew ‘Have a look at Brad!’ Sunday light again, and fluky, but we did win the first race of the day.”

Ginnivan finished by saying, “Joel wanted us to finish the regatta off, so we completed the last race. This is my first Etchells win ever (in a big event), and we got two bullets as well! Mum was in tears, and sent me $100, which we put on the bar. It’s really nice to get a result after all this time. I am pretty stoked, and we beat some serious players in Vaughan Prentice, Peter Conde and David Turton. Ray and Joel were awesome, and I thank them, the fleet, the club and the volunteers so much.”

Martin Sinclair’s, The Saint, during Race Four. Photo Credit: Emily Scott

David Turton’s, Our Thing (AUS 1446), placed second, some three points astern. Reflecting on it all, Turton commented jovially, “Giving him the (mast chocks) secrets did not help. It was all really good fun. It was the first time in the boat since Mooloolaba 2019. We had Josh Torpy, and seasoned Etchellian Ash Deeks on board, and might have gone in cold, but we came out hot!”

Turton added, “We had a blast and racing on Saturday in 25 knots was a highlight for sure. A lot of us have been in the Finn a lot due to travel restrictions. This has been good, and we’ve learned a lot, as we have a large fleet of 30 or so here.”

Encore at the weather mark of Race Four on Day Two. Photo Credit: Emily Scott

In third place was Peter Conde’s Encore (AUS 870), and they were also the first placed Corinthian crew. Conde sailed with long time crew Brian Hellier, and Peter Elkington stepped in for Myles Baron-Hay who could not attend. “We have not sailed the Etchells since last October at the States. We are still keen to be involved in the Class, it’s great regattas and very close racing.”

“This one came down to the first race on Sunday when they gybed on the new breeze first and went to the lead. There were lots of changes of places throughout the event, and in flat water with 8-10 knots blowing it becomes very tactical, and a game of centimeters”, added Conde.

“Really glad to collect the new Corinthian trophy, and we hope to have time for Brisbane fleet and Mooloolaba event in 2021, so we can see some of the regular faces again.”

Chinese take away for two – Waterloo Too (Red) and Stand In Line (White) both Chinese Gybe immediately after the finish of Race Four. Photo Credit: Emily Scott

The PRO for the regatta was Guy Morton who pushed for a third race on Friday, which paid dividends for Saturday. “They are a great bunch of sailors, and it’s always good to get out with them. I did really enjoy the Saturday, very exciting and thrilling. Noel Paterson had his whole body on the tiller as they came down to the finish line, and it was amazing.”

“We had two volunteers on the two mark boats, five on the committee boat and all of us enjoyed it the entire regatta. We had great feedback too, which is lovely. RQ has a very experienced team, which makes changes easy, and the fleet was flexile with start times, and that also helps to get all the scheduled (seven) races completed.”

Noel Paterson’s Waterloo Too crossing the finish line of Race Four. Photo Credit: Emily Scott

Brisbane Fleet Captain, Jason Hawkins commented, “With lockdowns and restrictions in place around the country, we are extremely grateful to have been able to hold the 2020 Etchells State Championships on the waters of Moreton Bay. It was also fantastic to see five skippers returning to Etchells racing since we hosted the Worlds in 2018. This resulted in very tight, highly competitive racing… and this of course is the reason we sail Etchells. We had 15 in the fleet, with Ben Leigh-Smith making the journey up for the Gold Coast Fleet.”

“We had extremely mixed conditions, and our PRO and volunteers did a fantastic job. Saturday was our most challenging day, with easily 25-30+ knots in highly unstable conditions as the storm front approached. We only got one race in, but got back ashore at 1pm, did the BBQ at 1.30, and then the storms hit at 2.15, so we all stayed around to watch the lightning show.”

Start of Race Seven on Day Three. Photo Credit: Emily Scott

In closing, Hawkins added, “Chris Nezmah has taken over the tongs from the Healey family for our world famous BBQ, and brought on chicken wings as his specialty. The next regatta is Brisbane Fleets in March 2021, so hopefully the borders will be open, and we look forward to welcoming back all the sailors from down South for our renowned Brisbane Fleet hospitality.”


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July 28, 2019 Jenny Cooper0

At the Brisbane Etchells Fleet AGM yesterday, long-time office holders Noel Paterson and David Healey stood aside from their respective positions within the Fleet handing their batons over to Jason Hawkins (incoming Fleet Captain) and Chris Nezmah (incoming Treasurer).

Both Noel and David have worked tirelessly to further the Etchells Fleet in Brisbane as well as world-wide as the summary of their involvement to-date listed below testifies to:

Noel Paterson

  • Brisbane Fleet Captain: 2000-2004, 2009-12. 2014-19 (total 12 years)
  • International Governor: 2003-08, 2011-15 (total 12 years)
  • Australian Vice President: 2002-2004 (2 years)
  • Australian President: 2004-06, 2008-11 (5 years)
  • Awarded International Life Member 2018
  • Awarded Brisbane Fleet Life Membership 27 July 2019
  • (unfortunately, there is no record of Noel’s previous service in the 1980’s)

David Healey

  • Brisbane Fleet Treasurer: 1999-2019 (except for 18 months 2014/16)  (18.5 Years)
  • Australian Assistant Secretary: 2008-11 (3 years)
  • Australian Secretary: 2011-2016, 2017-19 (7 years)
  • Australian Treasurer: 2016- to date
  • International Governor: 2009-15 (8 years)
  • International Governor & Treasurer: 2017-21 (2 years)
  • Awarded Australian Life Membership 2018

From official records, we note that collectively these two Etchells elder-statesmen from the Brisbane Fleet have given their time for almost 70 years in total !

Noel and David have handed over the Brisbane Fleet to new hands in the strongest position it has ever been in its 40+ year history both in terms of participation as well as financially.  We wish them both all the best in their ‘retirement’ and know they will remain just as active on the race track continuing to campaign on Moreton Bay.   

See you out on the water.   


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January 18, 2019 John Curnow0

Patience came to see Prudence!

Simone Wood, Thomas Quigley, Adam Lavis, and Samantha Costin are part of the RQYS Youth Development Programme and loving their Etchells experience.

It was quite the thing. If yesterday had been marvellous, then what could you possibly say about the Wednesday, other than it was the day for the now world famous David and Sue Healey BBQ? These have become a must do component of any Brisbane Etchells event, and Wednesday night’s one was just as good as the others, and also included some mid-regatta prize presentations, as well.

Yet the conundrum remained. Perhaps even the weather God’s heard of the issues. For whilst there has been a lot of concern over whether there would be enough breeze to complete a series of seven races, and every model had dire looking predictions, the second day of racing in the 2019 Etchells Australian Championship got two absolutely glamorous races in to take the overall tally to five. Importantly, this now brings in the drop to the equation, but we’ll come to all of that in a minute.

Magpie goes of to test the wind before ht start of Race Four today.

You see, just before it was all so, so good, and even the tide decided to be nice and gentle with everyone again today, you needed to have a sit down, and wait to chat with Patience. You see, she had come to catch up with her sister, Prudence, who ruled yesterday, when three races were completed and set the scene. Well done to PRO Louise Davis and her Race Management team, and their smiles today were just about as big as those of the competitors.

So with a little bit of waiting time done ashore, soon it was time to be towed out to the course. A little more waiting eschewed, not much, but the breeze wanted to go right a tad, and eventually 050 degrees held sway, and six knots got dialled in. It remained in the Nor’east zone all day, perhaps having a wee look further right, and built all day too. It settled in for a classic 12 to 15 knots by the end of the third work in the second race, and 0.75m sheep in the paddock (waves) were sliced by the Etchells oh-so-effortlessly. Perhaps that constant cooling from the harsh sun is what also had so many smiles on display.

Lisa Rose and those blue PFDs. In third place presently.

If it was all so good, then why would you want to sit it out? It’s true, but the U Flag once again claimed some victims. As for the racing, well it was intense as usual, and many did well. Some of those in turn were very happy, for they had not done so well yesterday, and thus after meeting with Prudence and Patience, were looking for some redemption.

Triad was one boat to kick on from yesterday, and how! Kirwan Robb, with Darren Jones, Hugo Allison and Sam Tiedermann took out Race Four, which was the first of the day. I asked Darren ‘Twirler’ Jones if he’d been putting the snake oil in the water bottles, “Maybe a little bit of beginners luck. It is awesome to get a race win in a Championship such as this, with the kinds of sailors who are here. The depth of quality sailor is unbelievable. It is even more exciting seeing as we only got into the boat a few days ago now.”

Gen XY are the overnight leaders with just two races left to coplete.
Gen XY are the overnight leaders with just two races left to coplete.

As for the win, Twirler said, “We have had a plan for each race, and we stuck to it. I think that has been a strong point of our sailing here. We have ticked it off, and it has played out well for us. We’re going OK, the boat’s OK, and even though we are not special in any particular area, and given how new the team is, I think we are putting together a nice set up. It has been a great event for us, when you think about it all.”

Winning Race Five in a commanding first to last post performance was the local outfit, Gen XY. As a result, they are also the overnight clubhouse leaders, with a slender one-point margin over last night’s victors, Havoc. Matt Chew is sailing with long-term crew Brian Donovan, Ben Vercoe, and for this regatta, Laser ace, Mitch Kennedy. A jovial Chew spoke ashore, “We’ll be going well if we can keep that 8th place as our drop. We had a bad start in that first race, and caught up really well to be fourth in the end, which is always encouraging.” As for their performance in the stronger breeze, Chew simply stated, “We don’t have any secrets, and I think we probably do better in the really light stuff. We were lit up in that last one, and makes for a really good day. Two more to come from here, and if we can deliver under pressure like we did today, then we will be really happy.”

Corinthian leader, Animal House (AUS 832) with Tango (Chris Hampton, Sam Haines and Charlie Cumbley) to weather of them.
Corinthian leader, Animal House (AUS 832) with Tango (Chris Hampton, Sam Haines and Charlie Cumbley) to weather of them.

Doing well overall too is, Animal House, from the Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club in Perth. Dirk Van Der Struyf is one elated skipper. Regrettably his normal crew could not make it, as they had expired all the leave and brownie points in the World Championship campaign, but Dirk has gelled well with his replacements from the Royal Geelong Yacht Club in Victoria. Tonight, together with Ben O’Brien and James Hannah they can be justly proud of being the Corinthian leader in 11th place overall, and five points clear of their nearest rival, Land Rat.

Van Der Struyf would say of it all, “Thank you. It is a nice feeling. Despite being a fill-in crew, which makes it challenging for the first few races, we are doing well. Our plan has been to keep it simple, and we certainly went for that today. I think another aspect is that we have kept it clean, and this really counts in an event like this.”

“We have not started well in any of the races to date, but the boat is going quickly, and this has allowed us to pick a few shifts, and wiggle our way out of trouble from time to time. We are happy because we are consistent (two 9s, a 12, and a 6 so far), and not had any blowouts, or rigs falling etc, etc. It is nice to be out here and sailing in beautiful conditions. We particularly liked the stronger conditions of this afternoon, and had the boat pushing along. Being in the top ten for that race was great, as the rarefied airs are kinder to you, and it is easier to get around the course. Being deeper than that is much, much harder, I can tell you!”

Lisa Rose and those blue PFDs. In third place presently.

Showing that consistency may well be some sort of family member with Patience and Prudence today, was Lisa Rose. Martin Hill, Julian Plante, Mat Belcher and Sean O’Rourke collected a third and a seventh place today to see them be in third place overall for the evening. Clearly there is some enviable talent on board, but the smiling ninjas, and reigning World Champs, seem to be very much eying off the top position, and are only seven points astern of Gen XY.

Hill commented once back ashore, “A great day’s sailing out there; so wonderful we could have done two more races! We had speed in the lighter conditions, and just have to find some more in the stronger stuff.” In the end, all I can say is, look out for the blue PFDs!

Racing continues tomorrow from the Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron in Manly, with timing and number of races to be determined based on the weather. There are just two more races to be completed, and it is still very tight on the scoreboard. Please keep and eye on Facebook and the fleet website for updates.

 

ENDS

 

More information at:

https://www.facebook.com/EtchellsAustralia – including live video from on the water

https://etchellsbrisbane.com

https://www.etchells.org.au

 

Image Name Caption © Holder
2019_EtchellsNats_D2_GenXY_1069.jpg Gen XY are the overnight leaders with just two races left to coplete. John Curnow
2019_EtchellsNats_D2_Havoc_1072.jpg Havoc, Iain Murray, Colin Beashel, and Richie Allanson are just one point off the leaders. John Curnow
2019_EtchellsNats_D2_TumbaRumba_1076.jpg Simone Wood, Thomas Quigley, Adam Lavis, and Samantha Costin are part of the RQYS Youth Development Programme and loving their Etchells experience. John Curnow
2019_EtchellsNats_D2_Magpie_1083.jpg Magpie goes of to test the wind before ht start of Race Four today. John Curnow
2019_EtchellsNats_D2_LisaRose_1095.jpg Lisa Rose and those blue PFDs. In third place presently. John Curnow
2019_EtchellsNats_D2_AnimalHouse_1105.jpg Corinthian leader, Animal House (AUS 832) with Tango (Chris Hampton, Sam Haines and Charlie Cumbley) to weather of them. John Curnow
2019_EtchellsNats_D2_IrisV_1118.jpg Peter McNeill, Kain Sinclair and Dean Blatchford on Iris V at the hitch mark. John Curnow
2019_EtchellsNats_D2_1435_1120.jpg Kate Deveraux on the brace on 1435, with Jeanne-Claude helming, Seve Jarvin on the main, and Marcus Burke getting the spinnaker ready for launch. John Curnow
2019_EtchellsNats_D2_Just2Funny_1129.jpg Just 2 Funny, James Hodgson, Trevor Martin, and Stuart Kennedy, getting the spinnaker set. John Curnow

 


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November 25, 2018 Jenny Cooper0

The 2019 Australian Championships will be held from Sunday 13 – Friday 18 January hosted by Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron.  The regatta will consist of two days of registration, one weigh in and a practice race on and seven races over 4 days.  There will be two social functions – the Welcome event on Monday January 14 and the Prize Giving on Friday January 2018. Entries have been open for a while so sign up now to book your place on the start line amongst some of the toughest competition in the class.

Click here to enter now!


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October 27, 2018 worldsadmin0
Winners are Grinners! Lisa Rose celebrate their overall win in style!

Seen a lot of water. Been to a lot of places. Today, Brisbane pretty much offered the classic mix of sun, and just enough wind for the last two races of the 2018 Etchells World Championship. I think it is fair to say that it was very much appreciated by all and sundry, whether they were competitors, or part of the large flotilla of spectators who took to Moreton Bay to witness the crowning of a new champion.

Now despite dire predictions, including no breeze at all just after lunch, it seemed Huey the God of Wind was just as motivated as the Race Committee to get a full series in. True, he may have wanted it to move around a bit, just to keep it interesting, but there can be no denying the intent.

So at around 1030hrs local, with the Sou’easter coming in from 140 degrees and blowing 7 knots at the bottom, and more like 9 at the top, Course 2 out to a range of 2nm, with the leeward gate set 0.7nm further uphill from the start, was all set up and ready to go. Pretty standard stuff by now…

Heading downwind as the bulk of the fleet first rounds the weather mark and then the clearance mark (green) on the final day of the 2018 Etchells World Championships – photo © Emily Scott Images

Overnight leader, Lisa Rose (Martin Hill, Julian Plante, Sean O’Rourke, and Mat Belcher) would collect the win in Race Eight. Now whilst this may not have set the padlock on the gate, it well and truly closed it, and so staying in front of your opposition would see you become the 2018 Etchells World Champions in front of a lot of family and friends, as well as many a keen enthusiast. This all came to pass later in the afternoon in Race Nine.

Lisa Rose wins Race Eight and was hot favourite to take the championship going into Race 9

In addition to the overall win, there were the Senior and Masters Divisions wins, as well. “Yes, it is very nice to hear those words, World Champion”, said Hill. “It is something we did not expect. We did know that we had a good team, however. I had known Mat for over 10 years, but it is a pretty tall order to arrive here with a fresh team, and against this sort of fleet, but we worked it together, and we felt the chemistry was right, so we improved as the series went on.”

“Even today when we started as leader, we knew that it was so easy to be first one day and 50th the next in a 94 boat fleet like this. Nervous was not the issue, but you do have to take each race as it comes. We started in the middle in that first race, and tacked on the shifts, which had us around the weather mark in third spot. We did well on the run to make it up to first place, which was important given we had a weakness in that area earlier. So then we hung onto that lead for the race win.”

The two wine glasses. The one who finishes lower in the standings is the one buying – and it is not cheap – on the final day of the 2018 Etchells World Championships – photo © Mitchell Pearson / SurfSailKite

“It was fantastic, but there was the matter of the next race, and whilst there was a buffer of like 17 points to the next competitor, but we were ultra aware that you could loose that much faster than you could gain it. Tactically, we just covered in Race Nine, rather than go for another win. Gen XY did get one place up on us, but again, the wonderful camaraderie of this class showed when John Bertrand and Scott Kaufmann realise we were in this tussle, and wave us through on Port, which was just marvellous.”

“The team was awesome, but Matt makes ordinary, extraordinary. He is fantastic. Having Will Ryan on Racer C in second place just goes to show the calibre of the Australian Sailing Team.”

Of course, Lisa Rose had an amazing support team of family and friends, including AST Coach, Michael Blackburn. “It is great. I could hear them cheering at each mark rounding and it is wonderful to share it with Lisa, the kids and grandchildren.”

Brisbane Fleet member, Land Rat on the final day of the 2018 Etchells World Championships – photo © Emily Scott Images

Quayside as they craned the boat out, Matt Belcher indicated to me that he had a lot of fun with this latest member of his collection of World Championships. He also felt a special and unique place inside said group.

Race Nine ensued, and was set to an axis of 090 degrees as the breeze continued to move left. It was actually a bit stronger, sometimes making it feel like a real a 12 knots behind it. The range was set to 2nm, with the gate in the usual place. The difference this time was that as the racing was on schedule, the committee could opt for Course One with its upwind finish.

A leg shortening had been predicted, but it ended up being a change to 045, as the Nor’easter continued to hold sway. William Voermann, Lucas Down and Gary van Lunteren on Triad took out this race. “It was great and a good race, too”, said Voermann.

Triad take out Race Nine and weren’t they thrilled on the final day of the 2018 Etchells World Championships – photo © Emily Scott Images

Apart from nailing the shift to the left during racing, Voermann indicated that, “A good clean start, and a textbook race with fast boat speed were essential. We played the shifts as well, as there were a couple in the first half of the first work to windward. So we stayed in phase, and kept mostly to the middle, and ultimately it opened up for us. The tide also dragged us up to the weather mark, as it began to ebb.”

“Downwind we worked hard, and on the second run, one of those boats that was ahead of us gybed away, which ended up costing them dearly. Almost everyone chose the Eastern gate at the leeward gate, and we were there by design, for we had a forecast that said it would go back to the left even more as the day wore on.”

In regards to collecting a bullet (first place) at a worlds and where to from there, Voermann simply said, “Who knows? We’ll just keep trucking along and learning.”

On the bow of Encore on the final day of the 2018 Etchells World Championships – photo © Emily Scott Images

The largest division in the regatta is the Corinthians, who represent over half of the 94-boat fleet and are also 100% amateur. The popular Iron Lotus crew of Tom King, Ivan Wheen, David Edwards, and Greg O’Shea finished in 13th place overall, with a 49th place their worst result, once the Black Flag had been discarded.

At the time of writing there was a protest pending involving the leader in the Youth Division, Bait N Switch, which was crewed by Jake Lilley, Matt Wearn and Lewis Brake. Irrespective of the outcome, Jake Lilley’s comments about the sailing, the class, and the benefits of sailing Etchells still stand. “It’s been a long week of racing against a lot of top guys, and all the best in the world. It is a pretty new experience for us. It was our first time racing the Etchells, and all together too. It was also our first real Etchells regatta. So we have learned a lot, and it’s really valuable experience for us in our Olympic campaigns moving forward.”

Naturally, their results trended upwards as the week progressed. “It is important to be consistent, and we have not quite got the boat figured out upwind just yet. So we worked on starting well and then be in the right breeze lanes. There are a lot of typical things, but we have lots of lessons to draw upon now, many at the hands of past Olympians. So come the end of 2020 we are going to have many people to thank, hopefully.”

Not so orderly leeward rounding on the final day of the 2018 Etchells World Championships – photo © Mitchell Pearson / SurfSailKite

“It feels like Rio was yesterday, and the Olympic trials held four years ago were just last week. Time just disappears, and these regattas are just so crucial and critical little milestones, where we can get some good nuggets from the best in the world off the world, and then get schooled a couple of times out on the water. To race at home has just been terrific.”

The Grand Maters was won by John Bertrand AO, with Noel Drennan and Ben Lamb. The top female helm was Jeanne-Claude Strong who apart from collecting a race win, also finished in 20th place overall with her crew on 1435, Seve Jarvin, Marcus Burke and Jen Danks. She is an inspiration individual in so many ways, and tows her on boat to and from regattas. She is also an accomplished pilot, and brought her own plane home from the USA the long way via Europe and the sub-Continent. On top of all of that, she retains a bubbly personality, and a completely infectious enthusiasm.

Always good when you’re going uphill and they’re coming down on the final day of the 2018 Etchells World Championships – photo © Mitchell Pearson / SurfSailKite

Chairman of the organising Committee, David Irvine, was a justifiably proud man at the end of the day. “Who would have thought that around five years ago when we decided to go for it that we would be standing on the deck now, with just presentations to go, which will be my last official duty. In addition to the turnout, I think the conditions have been another highlight. We concentrated on giving people the best regatta we could on the ground, and the vibe in the boat park has been great. My back is sore from all the pats, and my right hand from all the shakes. That’s the best news, and I am very humble and very proud to be associated with this regatta.”

With more than a touch of his trademark humour on display, Irvine offered these gems for anyone contemplating something like this. “Firstly, don’t do it. Next. Jump in and plan the heck out of it. The findings will be handed on to Corpus Christi for 2019 and Perth 2020. You don’t get into it with 12 months to go. You start the moment you win the rights to hold it. It was the best regatta we could have put on.”

The Committee Boat was again popular today, but did not get any more kisses on the final day of the 2018 Etchells World Championships – photo © Mitchell Pearson / SurfSailKite

“The number of people involved has just been phenomenal. Today we had 27 people out there on start, mark, and safety. We had to make more shirts for the entire group, and it was in excess of 160. Their efforts equate to well over a thousand hours too. It is fantastic for the club, as well as the class. The Wilson brothers have been fantastic, and none of it would have been done without the committee that arranged it all.”

The Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron in the Brisbane suburb of Manly hosted the 94-boat strong armada for the 2018 Etchells World Championship.

Regatta Website at 2018etchellsworlds.org for full results and here for many things including live vision from the track, www.facebook.com/EtchellsBrisbane

Regatta Website:  https://etchellsbrisbane.com

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