by Lulu Roseman
The Melges 32 Easy Tiger III made an impressive regatta debut at the Sydney Harbour Regatta over the weekend by finishing second overall behind the 2012 defending champion, 2Unlimited skippered by Greg ‘Enzo’ Prescott.
2Unlimited - Sydney Harbour Regatta 2013 - Photo: Andrea Francolini
Skipper Chris Way and his crew - which included the current Moth World Champion Josh McKnight - sailed consistently over the two-day event to rack up six second places from six races. Peter Winter, Guy Kennard, Peter Gregg, Malcolm Clark, Sally Way and Alex Pallu completed the eight member crew.
Three races were held today in a brisk 12-14 knot nor ‘easterly breeze on a course area positioned in the north of the harbour.
'We were leading the first two races today but somehow Enzo got the better of us even though in some cases it was only by a 10 or 20 second margin. They were pretty fast and were able to maximise our weaknesses. We need to work on our gear changes and gybe angles but being new to the class it’s not a bad result. We certainly take a lot of positives away from this event,' Chris Way said.
'They really were the boat to beat and we continued to put ourselves in positions where we can really test our boat speed against them. It probably didn’t help us that we were sailing with some older sails and our boat preparation was very basic,' Way added.
'This kind of regatta is perfect training for us in a new class with a new boat that we are all learning, so to be biting at the heels of one the best in the Australian fleet is exactly where we want to be.'
Yesterday’s tight racing in the tricky conditions that shifted 30 degrees between north-east and north-west was nothing unusual for the highly polished Team Tiger who used the event as a training exercise in the lead up to the Melges 32 Australian Championships in April.
'We can only improve from here and after the last two days of racing we know we are starting from a very good position. The training we have been doing with Alex Pallu is really paying of and our teamwork is working well. From here on our 100% focus is the Melges 32 Nationals.'
Results: (After Six Races)
1.) Greg Prescott, 2Unlimited; 1-1-1-1-1-1=6
2.) Chris Way, Easy Tiger III; 2-2-2-2-2-2=12
3.) Kim Williams, Rock’N’Roll; 3-3-3-3-3-3=18
4.) Martin Cross, IF!; 4-4-4-4-4-7=27
5.) Angus Reid, Maxstar; 7-7-7-7-7-7=42
6.) Stephen O’Rourke, Panther; 7-7-7-7-7-7=42
Photo: Tracey Walters/© Melges Asia Pacific