by Di Pearson
2011 Rolex Farr 40 world champion Guido Belgiorno-Nettis will lead a field of world class one-design sailors as they slug it out for the prestigious hardware at the 2012 CYCA Trophy-One-Design race. Farr 40 and Sydney 38 sailors will be battling against one another for three days of intense racing, which will begin on Friday on Sydney Harbour.
Zen crew use weight evenly in light air. Credit www.sailpix.com.au
Heading the field of the previously named Rolex Trophy, is the new class president and 2011 Rolex Farr 40 world champion, Guido Belgiorno-Nettis (Transfusion) who verified his stature in the class with a second place in 2010 and third at the September 2012 Worlds in Chicago.
Nearest rivals are Estate Master (Martin and Lisa Hill) fifth at the 2011 Worlds and eighth placed Kokomo (Lang Walker), which finished ninth in 2012. Jeff Carter’s Edake makes up the rest of the Sydney entries, while the quickly improving Lambourdini (David Lambourne) will be flying the flag for Queensland.
However, perfectionist Belgiorno-Nettis and his crew also sailed a near-flawless 2012 Australian Championship and won the Rolex Trophy last year, marking them as ‘the ones to beat’. Kokomo was second at the challenging Australians, but eight points behind, with Estate Master third and Lambourdini, representing Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron, was sixth, with Edake bringing up the tail-end.
It is more difficult to discern an outright favourite from the Sydney 38 pack entered in the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s annual series, as each has come up with the goods somewhere around the traps, in short and long races. And as the event will incorporate the NSW Championship, all will be out for blood.
Intense concentration aboard 2011 winner Old School. Credit www.sailpix.com.au
Having won the Sydney 38 trophy at this event last year, Mark Griffith and his Old School crew from ‘The Alfred’s’ would have to be top rated, having a number of wins previously and since attached to their names. However, they finished fourth at the 2012 Nationals, beaten by some of their foe entered for the CYCA Trophy.
Fifth at the Nationals and second to Old School at the 2011 Rolex Trophy was Gordon Ketelbey’s Zen. With the amount of racing the Middle Harbour Yacht Club yachtsman and his boat undertake, both around the cans and offshore, he could, and probably will, give Old School a hard time.
As the adage goes, 'Never underestimate a woman,' and in this case, Sally Warneford (Thirlmere) is the very competitive woman in question. Her co-owner, Larry Jamieson is a fixture on the yachting scene, and is equally competitive.
Then there are the likes of locals, Geoff Bonus (Calibre) who was third last year, Alan and Tom Quick (Outlaw) who finished runners-up at the 2012 Nationals and Bruce Foye (The Goat), along with RPAYC entries, Warwick Welch’s The Bolter and Bruce Ferguson’s Whisper, which finished third at the Nationals.
As these sailors will tell you, any small mistake is a costly one in one-design racing. There are no second chances, because there are no throw away races in this world, like there are in other events. And the competition starts before the crews even step foot aboard their chosen ride; each must first weigh-in and come in on target, otherwise somebody has to go.
The race committee plans up to four races each day, for a total of nine races, and the plan is to fire the start gun at 11.00am each morning, weather permitting. Courses will be either offshore; east of North Head or east of the Macquarie Light, or on Sydney Harbour – depending on conditions and wind direction.
For daily results log on to Cruising Yacht Club of Australia website!new.