Sailing is a family sport and often three generations will crew together in larger yachts. But in the dinghy and skiff fleets at Sail Sydney today, two members of the same family sailed different boats but both enjoyed success.
On another glorious day of hot sun, moderate breeze and calm seas for the Youth and Invited classes, Nathan Bryant leads the Laser 4.7 fleet while older sister Natasha sits in a close third place in the 29er.
Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club has a very strong Youth program under the tutelage of Traks Gordon – the club is sending two containers of boats to Perth for the Youth Nationals – and the Laser 4.7 class emphasised this strength.
After six races, RPAYC holds four of the top five places, with only Max Quan (SYC) in third spoiling the party.
Dropping his Black Flag from Race Two yesterday, Nathan Bryant scored three bullets in a row to lead the class by three points from clubmate Antony Hawk. Also dropping her BFD from yesterday was Charley Wells, now in fourth place, who leads another RPAYC member, Jarrah Sheppard, by two points.
Nathan reported that the wind was “pretty shifty” and said the final race was interesting because several yachts were on the course and had to be negotiated. The 12-year-old described his first Sail Sydney as “good experience” leading into the Youth Nationals.
Out on the skiff course, Nathan Bryant's older sister Natasha was having another good day with her crew Annie Wilmot. Yesterday the pair won the opening race but suffered a setback in the next when they got a huge amount of weed caught on the daggerboard and rudder and they finished 12th. They were able to drop that race from their scorecard today and they go into the final day in 3rd place, just a point out of second.
Still out in front in this class is the Western Australian pair of Annabelle Davies and Hayden Hunt who are putting together a very consistent regatta. After seven races they were able to drop a 5th and lead by 6 points over Harry Lawson and Simon Hoffman.
Hayden said they had come “over east” to test themselves against the local sailors and so far they were “pretty pleased” with how they've gone.
The Optis provide the biggest fleets at the event, with 46 in Open, 47 in Intermediate and 31 in Green Fleet.
The Open and Intermediate fleets were able to get their maximum four races in today. The Open class is shaping as a three-way battle among three sailors from the home club Woollahra. Otto Henry leads by a single point from Cole Tapper who is two points clear of Jay Karney.
The Intermediates are more widely spaced after Daniel Costandi started the day with two bullets. He followed with a seventh and a fourth but leads by five points from Finley Scade.
As discussed in a separate article, points are not the main purpose of Green Fleet, which is an introduction to racing. However, they are being recorded and after four races there is a single point separating Garth Bickford (16) from Toby Rose (17) and Joel Beashel (18).
Other classes sailed today included Laser Standard and Radial, Flying 11, 420, Mirror and Sabot.
The Laser Standard is a two-way battle between Thomas Vincent (MYC) and Sean Atherton (MHASC) while in the Radial Oskar Hansen and Peter Heywood are just a point apart.
The Mirror title is also up in the air with three crews from three different clubs in contention. Douglas and Charlotte Raftesath (BSC) lead on five points after three races, with two bullets getting them off to a great start. However, Mark and Maddison Nash (HHSC) are only a point behind after placings of first, second and third, and Richard and Charlie Baker (WSC) are just two points further back.
In the Sabots, Henry Larkins in Viper has opened a big lead on second-placed Tahlia Phillips. Two bullets and a fourth leave Larkins on six points, five clear of Phillips.
The Flying 11 is always a strong class in NSW, where it is used as stepping stone between Optis and either Laser or skiffs. Thirty-one entries were received but after the first day, two clubs and four crews are showing out above the pack. Barnabas is another famous NSW sailing name, especially where skiffs are concerned and Zak and Jake Barnabas are doing it proud on top of the table, two points ahead of fellow Manly 16ft Skiff members Nathan Lilley and James Pinnington.
The Belmont 16ft Skiff Club holds equal third place, with Stephen and Rebecca Hancock tied on nine points with Tom Stivano and Jed Fatches.
The 420s started their regatta yesterday and after five races, Middle Harbour Yacht Club has a lock on the first three places. Finn Gilbert and Louie Collins held a slender one point margin over Alec Brodie and Xavier Winston-Smith who in turn are a point ahead of Dana Tavener and Catherine Pagett.
Full results can be found at http://www.sailingresults.com.au/ScoreItV2/Public/Templates/2014SS/index.php?event_id=265
About Sail Sydney
Sail Sydney is part of Sydney's Summer Aquatic Events program. The NSW Government is a key Sail Sydney supporter along with Nautilus Marine, Gill Marine clothing, Steve Jarvin Motors, Lejen Marine, Tohatsu Outboards and Sydney Harbour Boat Storage.