17-year-old Jason Waterhouse, who won the Hobie 16 class Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship in Brazil earlier this month, is now preparing to sail an 18ft Skiff with the Australian 18 Footers League during the 2009-2010 season.
Jason will be joined by Jeremy Roberts (20-years-old) on the sheet and Michael Mc Cormick (19-years-old) in the bow of the skiff, which will have the sponsorship support of Boatmate Shiprights.
While Jason realizes the task ahead of him and his young crew, he has the knowledge that he is a winner. Aside from the recent victory in Brazil, Jason won the 2006 Hobie Dragoon Worlds in Spain and the 2007 World Youth Hobie 16 title in Fiji. He is also an eight times Australian champion in three different classes.
Michael crewed with Jason in the 2007 World title win in Fiji while Jeremy is a former 420 Australian youth champion.
Jason's father Rod, himself a famous Hobie class champion and former 18 footer skipper, will provide the experience to support the young team during their initial season.
Rod may also have to take the tiller for a couple of the early season races as Jason completes his Higher School Certificate exams.
The Australian 18 Footers League is looking forward to another top season with seven new skippers set to join the 24-boat fleet for the club racing.
Highlight for the summer will be the Giltinan Championship, which will be sailed on Sydney Harbour from 12-21 February 2010.
Along with the strong local Sydney fleet, there will be entries from UK, USA, New Zealand and Europe as well as teams from Western Australia and Queensland.
Heading the international challenge will be 2004 Giltinan champion Rob Greenhalgh, 2001 and 2002 champion Howie Hamlin from the US, Andy Budgen (UK) and Chris Skinner from New Zealand.