28 August 2017

WA A Class Championship - 20th Aug


“A”  Class Western Australian  2017 “A”  Class State Championship

  The ‘A’ Class State Championships was held at Jackadder Lake on Sunday the 20th August.  There four different designs  in the field of 7 boats.   Three Swords, two Venoms , a Privateer and an  A 1.

It was sailed in light winds which were variable in direction and strength throughout the day which made for some very close racing and that showed on the scoreboard. There was no safe covering  position on the course for any leader in those winds.

 From the commencement Past winner Jeff Green in his sword  showed he was a force to be reckoned with posting a number of wins with speed off the line and an ability to pick the shifts which resulted in  wins in three of the first four races.  It seemed from the race results so far like we may have been looking for a one horse race.  As the morning progressed  Roger Paul sailing his Venom began to edge into the top two places in the results between the Swords of Jeff and stand in skipper Rosco Bennett  who was sailing the borrowed Sword of Glenn Dawson.  

Conditions stayed variable and the both designs showed their strengths. The Sword with it’s straight line speed provided there was wind and the Venom with it’s faster acceleration and light air speed.

Despite a cool morning things began to hot up around midday  on and off the course and the championship’s race officer Warren Rock made a wise decision to continue races as long as possible while there was breeze before a late lunch break (as well as ward off the calls for lunch from his two hungry assistants Robert Paton and Robert Mews (the dinghy captain).

The results were very close at the lunch break with only a few points separating Jeff from Roger.  The  trend was changing however with Rosco Bennett sorting out the peculiarities of sailing an A class and  was heard to say  “Got to stop sailing it like an IOM”  which was bad news for everyone else in the fleet who may have though he was  not in the race. During the afternoon the breeze direction and velocity became even more marked. Many front runners also made mistakes and were caught on the wrong side of shifts or in between different winds on the tricky Jackadder Lake.

 Wins were had by Hub Bell skilfully sailing the aged A1 in the final race and Denton Roberts sailing his Sword to a number of podium places including a win and a thrilling from behind climb into second place in the dying seconds of one race placing him between the two front runners Roger and Rosco.  Minor placing by Ian Sheriff with his Privateer and A class newcomer Simon Ellis with his Venom during the day also had a significant effect on the score board for the front runners.

The winner was never going to be evident until the final races with Roger making it to a lead of two points on the result sheet from Rosco and Jeff some paces behind.  

In all a great days sailing with quite a few spectators interested in the close racing assisted by race officer Warren's race efforts and decisions, as well as his assistants and the sporting attitude of all sailors on and off the water.

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