Hutchins School from Tasmania takes out schools team racing

The final day of racing for the students competing in the 2009 Australian School Team Racing Championships proved to be the toughest of the four-day competition.

Hosted by the Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron on the edge of Waterloo Bay in Brisbane's bayside suburb of Manly, 15 teams raced the Swiss League formatted regatta with The Hutchins School from Tasmania taking out the series for a third consecutive year.

Team Captain Elliott Noye said that he was extremely impressed with how his team performed for this regatta, but stated that the win wasn't an easy one.

“The teams racing at this event were awesome. So many of us racing at the regatta are also competitive fleet racers, so it really did come down to how everyone on the team communicated,” said Noye.

Team member and fellow skippers Chris Jones and Rohan Langford said their team has spent a lot of time together and just knew how each other ticked.

“We all know what's expected, and at the end of the day it's great to see the formulas of our training come together as planned,” said Langford.

“We did heaps of training in our Lasers and the other classes the team sails, and really focused on boat handling and boat speed,” said Jones.

The Anglican Church Grammar School (QLD) finished the regatta is second position after an exhausting finals series with The Hutchins School.

“It was awesome being in the finals, but it was really hard racing,” said Team Captain Angus Rankin.

South Australian Entry Saint Joseph's placed third overall in the regatta and are now looking forward to teaming up with The Hutchins School and Anglican Church Grammar School and taking on the New Zealand sailors at the 2009 Interdominion Secondary Schools Team Racing Championships which is also being hosted by the Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron in July.

“We are so happy with how this regatta panned out for us. We are really excited to be coming back in October and racing with the top teams again,” said Team Captain Luke Stephens.

Tasmanian local Murray Jones who has been the coach for The Hutchins School for eight years said that his team wouldn't be where they were without their fleet racing skills.

“This regatta has showcased how fleet racing and team racing can coexist. Not just for our team, but for all the teams who competed in the regatta. It was great to see so many familiar faces race in both the OAMPS Insurance Brokers Queensland Youth Week, which was at RQYS just days before the Australian Team Racing Championships. All the sailors who competed are extremely talented and their knowledge of the rules and their boat handling was brilliant to see”, said Jones.

Two other awards where given out during the presentation of trophies.

The Umpires Achievement award was given to the sailors from Kangaroo Island Community Education (SA) who portrayed great team spirit on the water during the four-day regatta.

The Sportsmanship Award was given to Pippa Solly from the Haileybury College (VIC) for taking a voluntary a penalty without direction from a competing team or an umpire and for her all round good sportsmanship during the regatta.

The visiting teams will travel home today with most heading straight back to school. The Hutchins School, Anglican Church Grammar School and Saint Joseph's will meet again in October and go from being rivals to team mates when they race for Australia in the 2009 Interdominion Secondary School Team Racing Championships.

“This is the best chance we have to beat the Kiwi's,” said Elliot Noye. “Our Australian Team will be ready for them!”

For more information – http://www.rqys.com.au/index.php/department/team-racing/

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