ISAF Team Racing World Championships is being hosted by the Fastnet Marine and Outdoor Education Centre in Schull, Ireland from 28th August to 4th September 2011.
USA team training - ISAF Team Racing World Championships 2011. Photo: Event Media
AMC Roaring Forties is the appropriate name given to Australia’s team, all from Hobart’s Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania that tonight begins competition in the championships in southern Ireland.
The AMC Roaring Forties team is ranked among the best contesting the series, but faces strong competition from the United States and British teams fresh from their regular inter-college and inter-university team racing.
Although the Australian team members are all teenagers, they must contest the open division because the youth division, which Australia won at the previous ISAF team racing world championship two years ago, has seen the age limit changed from under 21 to fewer than 19.
Australian team - ISAF Team Racing World Championships 2011. Photo: Event Media
The AUS team comprises helmsmen Elliott Noye, Rohan Langford and George Jones with Lucy Shephard, Amelia Catt and Anna Vaughan as their crew.
AMC Roaring Forties team has been training off Schull, a small village on the south coast of Ireland, not far from the notorious Fastnet Rock, for the past week. They have been sailing in Firefly dinghies but early this week had their first sail in the brand new TR3.6 dinghies especially designed and built for this world regatta.
The village of Schull has turned on wonderful Irish hospitality for the crews from nations around the world with many businesses adopting a team and decorating their premises with appropriate flags.
The highlight has been the official opening which followed a parade by the teams through the main street. 'Each team marched and the whole shebang was led by the marching band from Skibbereen (St Fachtna’s Silver Band to be precise),' reported well known Hobart sailor Michael Vaughan who daughter is in the Australian team.
Apart from the teams there were vintage cars, clowns, multiple clubs, sports team (pony club, hurling, tennis, football, etc) and community groups.
'There were about 3000 people here in Schull… it was a fantastic, festive occasion and the Australian team was proud to be part of it,' Vaughan added.