RC Laser Yacht Aus Championship - Sydney sailor brings home gold
by Cliff Bromiley on 3 Aug 2014
Remote Controlled Laser Yacht 2014 Australian Championship - Graham Brown of Sydney showed outstanding form to win the Remote Controlled Laser Yacht 2014 Australian Championship held on the Gold Coast over two days last weekend.
Graham Brown - Gold medal inner. Remote Controlled Laser Yacht 2014 Australian Championship Cliff Bromiley
Brown had previously won the inaugural event in Sydney in 2009 and the 2012 championship in Perth. This year’s win was a welcome return to form for Brown after a disappointing fourth in Adelaide last year.
'I was sitting in third at the end of day one and finding it hard to keep up with the top two boats. Fortunately I hit my straps on Sunday when the breeze picked up to be more like Sydney Harbour conditions. The competition was fierce this year – the skill levels increase year-on-year, as does the size of the fleet. This was a particularly pleasing event to win.'
The event attracted a field of 24 sailors from around the country and was held at Emerald Lakes on the Gold Coast in sunny conditions with variable winds. Light conditions on the Saturday meant that the big ‘A’ sails were the order of the day whereas the smaller ‘B’ sails did most of the work on Sunday.
At conclusion of racing on Saturday, each of the States represented filled one of the top five positions and during the two days, four sailors had time at the top of the leader-board. Brown finished the regatta with a first place in each of the last four races to eventually take gold by a comfortable margin. Jurgen Luther from Adelaide, one of the sports up and comers, took silver and another stalwart of the sport, Sydney’s Paul Derwent took bronze - his first hand on a major trophy since 2009.
‘The standard of racing is extremely high in Australia’, said Peter O’Grady of the regatta organising committee. ‘We had two competitors at an international event in the UK last year and they both did extremely well. Australia is second to none at this sport. While it is very competitive at this level, we are all in it for fun and the social aspect is just as important.’
Remote control Laser sailing has broad appeal. Many enthusiasts are experienced dinghy sailors but many others learn their sailing skills behind a joy-stick. It is a sport enjoyed by families with partners and siblings often rubbing shoulders while they do battle on the water.
The Radio Control Laser is an international class boat and one of the most widely raced yachts in the world. It is a quarter scale model of the iconic Olympic class Laser dinghy.
For information about sailing with your local club please contact Cliff Bromiley on 0417 469-675