- Written by FFIWA_webmaster
- Published: 20 Apr 2019
After the cancellation of racing on Day 1, sailing finally got under way on Day 2 of the 2019 Flying Fifteen WA State Championships in Esperance, sponsored by Gemmill Homes.
The winds, while much less wild than on Day 1, were still challenging for the fleet, with an offshore wind resulting in wind speeds ranging from over 20 knots to under 10 knots (excluding the squall that - thankfully - came through between races 1 and 2 where the wind peaked at 32 knots) as well as some quite significant windshifts.
There were stories of good and bad luck throughout the fleet as a result, but perhaps none had quite as bad luck as Hamish Carnahan and Peter Mudford in Neffarious (RFBYC) who, while in second place in race three, and within striking distance of the finishing line got flattened by a gust and ended up in 6th place. The Vances in Fast Lane (SoPYC) were the only boat to suffer significant gear damage, with a rigging failure ending their day early after two races.
There was some good, close racing throughout the fleet. Perhaps a little too close for some, with Tim Walker and Alan Sharpe in Follow Us (SoPYC) seen doing circles after one Port and Starboard incident. Greg Leaversuch and Peter Barblett in Glamour Buoys (RFBYC) apparently only avoided a major T-bone with Greg Tonnison and Hector Paturau in Spot the Difference (SoPYC) due to good luck and some sharp decision-making and skill on the part of both skippers. Leavo and Baddie having to take a penalty after that one. With racing so close, it was easy to lose several places due to comparatively minor snafus - and there were plenty of those stories to be heard in the bar at the end of the day.
Despite some "bad" (by his standards) starts, Nick Jerwood (with Brad Sheridan pulling the strings at the front of the boat) (SoPYC) still managed to end the day with two bullets and a second to lead the regatta by seven points from Glamour Bouys Leavo and Baddie, who despite their travails had two seconds and a seventh. The next four positions are very close, with Greg Tonnison and Hector Paturau in Spot the Difference on 13 points, National titles runners-up Philippa Packer and Dean McAullay in FireFly (RFBYC) on 14 points, David Yu and Chris Nelson in Tuffan Up (RFBYC) on 15 points (despite winning Race 2, a 10th place in Race 3 has pushed them back a notch in the standings), and local Esperance identity, and regatta Chairman, David Swan, with Matt Elliot crewing, one point further back in 6th place overall with 16 points.
Special mention to the only Silver boat in the fleet, Eagle Eye, skippered by Terry Newby and crewed by Leanne Fallows (SoPYC), who have only been sailing Fifteens for less than 12 months. Not only are they beating a few of the Open boats, but they are also leading the Consistency results after three races. Currently in runner up position are a local Esperance crew of Gregor McQueen and Peter Fox in Lightning, and third is A-Squared, crewed by Andrew Knowles and Anne Knowles (SoPYC).
Progressive results overall can be viewed via this link: http://www.sportspage.com.au/yacht_clubs/ebyc/f15states/Flying_Fifteen_Open_Championship.htm, while the Consistency results can be viewed at http://www.sportspage.com.au/yacht_clubs/ebyc/f15states/Flying_Fifteen_Consistency.htm
Three more races are scheduled for the morning of Day 3, with lighter winds of around 10 knots (still from the West to South West) forecast.