by Paul Manning
Following a general recall, racing got away shortly after 09:00 with a black flag on a warm day in Port Phillip Bay with the majority of the fleet heading left towards the shore with the leaders also coming from this side of the course. An initial group headed right downwind with the exception of Tom Wright (GBR 432) who gybed immediately. Ian Renilson (GBR 449), Jon Newman (AUS 425), Marcus Hamilton (AUS453) and Bruce Keen (GBR 441) began to pull clear of the chasing bunch and rounded the leeward mark with Tom Wright.
Grand Master Ian Renilson held on for the win from Newman, Keen, Hamilton and Wright.
The fleet tactics for race 2 changed from race 1, with the breeze clocking right the upwind tactics were to hold your lane off the line for 2-3 minutes and then tack hard right, Marcus Hamilton led with Ian Renislon close behind. Unfortunately, both sailors were OCS which handed Dan Henderson (GBR 409) the current Youth World Champion the win, from Tim Hill (AUS 424), Ritchie Robertson (AUS 380) and Julian Ramm (GER 443)
With a stable breeze both in strength and direction the third race followed a similar format to race two, but with boats choosing to take a relatively short starboard initial downwind leg followed by a longer port gybe. The same top sailors were again at the fore, except that Wright had gone askore along with Hamilton, with Jono Neate (AUS 440) and Dave Poston (GBR 324) joining the fron runners.
The fleet then came ashore for a lunch break to chill out.
The final race of the day got underway in a slightly increased breeze and sea state.
Jono Neate hit the front and led around the course closely followed by Renilson, Henderson, Keen and Tim Moorehouse (AUS 379). Neate pulled away to a commanding lead, but in the final metres to the finish hit a steep set of waves and pitchpoled spectacularly!
The fleet came ashore at 15:00 to sample some of the sponsors beverages.
Broo Beer Musto Perforamance Skiff Pre-World Championships overall position
1st Ian Renilson GBR 449
2nd Daniel Henderson GBR 409
3rd Jonathan Newman AUS 425
4th Bruce Keen GBR 441
5th Tim Hill AUS 424
Racing for the Broo Beer Musto Performance Skiff World Championships is due to start on Tuesday.
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