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NSW Youth Match Racing Championship - Bennett and her crew on the lead

by Jennifer Crooks on 3 Aug 2013
NSW Youth Match Racing Championship - Milly Bennett leads the Club Marine NSW Youth Match Racing championship CYCA Staff .
At the Club Marine NSW Youth Match Racing Championship, Milly Bennett and her crew of Alice Tarnawski, Kajsa Doyle, Jess Russell and Seldon Coventry, representing Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club, currently leads at the conclusion of Round Robin I and with two flights of Round Robin II being completed.

The Club Marine NSW Youth Match Racing Championship is conducted by the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia and is sailed on the new Youth Sailing Academy fleet of ten Elliott 7s which were launched late last month, marking the second major milestone of the 20th anniversary of the Academy.

Bennett had a near perfect scorecard dropping only one match. 'We lost the first race today - Clare (Costanzo) had us like Vegemite on toast. We got into our groove in the next race and settled down' Bennett said.

'The new Elliotts are similar to the Force 24s that we have at RPAYC and the steering is a little difficult but I got used to it as the day wore on.'

Bennett is one of two female skippers in the regatta and in the past twelve months, she has honed her match racing skills which showed last week when she won the 2013 Australian University Yacht Racing Championship.

Murray Jones finished third to Bennett last week in the 2013 Australian University Yacht Racing Championship and is currently tied for second with Malcolm Parker (RPAYC). Jones came into this regatta as the highest ranked skipper and found the shifty conditions tough.

'We missed a few of the shifts in some matches and it cost us,'Jones, who represents the host club (CYCA) said. 'We had some good matches early on when the breeze was stronger and then as the breeze lightened we made a few mistakes.

'It’s good to finally race the Elliotts, after being involved in the delivery and set-up of the new fleet. Hopefully we get some more breeze tomorrow,' he added. Jones is sailing five up with a crew that includes Cam Gundy, Brett Dixon, Beynon Telford and Matt Stenta, who are all members of the Youth Sailing Academy’s Advanced Squad.

Malcolm Parker and his crew of William Dargaville, James Farquharson and Jack Nairn, representing the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club are tied with Murray Jones. 'It was a very challenging day,' said bowman Jack Nairn whilst his skipper was in the protest room over a mark issue in Flight Two of Round Robin One.

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'The breeze wasn’t as strong as forecast and being one of the lighter crews we had to throw our weight around.We had a tough match against our club mate Milly Bennett. She got an early penalty and we spent most of the race trying to chase her down,' Nairn added.Bennett sailed a near perfect race and had time to clear her penalty, and record a solid win.

Racing commenced on time in a fresh 10-15 knot westerly breeze with the race course set in the vicinity of Rushcutters Bay, north of Clarke Island with the top mark of the course set near Garden Island. Race management was under the direction of Race Officer David Tallis with Trish Ford as the Chief Umpire.


The breeze lightened off as the afternoon wore and as the second round robin got underway a moderate 6-8 knots westerly breeze had settled in.

'Those that had eyes out of the boat made the gains today,' Race Officer David Tallis said. 'It was a beautiful day on the Harbour but the race track was tricky as there were 40 degree shifts in the breeze at times. On a day like today, once competitors got in front, the rich got richer in the big shifts.'

Chris Hosking,a YSA graduate of the 90s who has worked with the Ran and Artemis racing teams congratulated the CYCA on the new Elliott 7s. 'Congratulations to the CYCA and the Youth Sailing Academy on the new fleet. It was an honour to be involved and represent the CYCA with the introduction of the Elliott 5.9's back in the early 90's.


'All the best to the current generation of youth guys and girls coming through the ranks and a big thank you to the CYCA for providing such a great platform,' Hosking added.

Racing continues tomorrow, Sunday 4 August, from 1015hours with the remaining flights of Round Robin Two, Semi-Finals and Finals being sailed. The Bureau of Meteorology predicting another fine day with the breeze predicted to be northwesterly of up to 10 knots tending westerly 15-25 knots during the day.

Racing will be conducted in the vicinity of Rushcutters Bay and live results from each match will be posted on the CYCA website via CYCA website


The winner of the Club Marine NSW Youth Match Racing Championship will gain automatic entry into the Australian Youth Match Racing Championship that will be sailed on Elliott 7s and hosted by the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia, from 25-29 September.

Leaderboard at the conclusion of Round Robin One:
1st: Milly Bennett (RPAYC) - 5 wins, 1 loss
2nd: Malcolm Parker (RPAYC) - 4 wins, 2 losses;
2nd: Murray Jones - 4 wins, 2 losses
4th: Nicholas Connor (RPAYC) - 3 wins, 3 losses
5th: Clare Costanzo (RPAYC) - 3 wins, 3 losses
6th: Oliver Hartas (CYCA) - 2 wins, 4 losses
7th: Stevens (RSYS) - 0 wins, 6 losses

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