As a young and enthusiastic dinghy sailor in the UK during the 1970s, it was the pictures of Sydney Harbour 18 footers in sailing magazines that first got me interested in Australia as a place to visit.
Gotta Love It Seven leads to the finish - JJ Giltinan Championships 2011
From recollection the rather naive but ultimately prescient thought train of a twelve year old went something along the lines of 'any country that sails boats like that has got to be a great place to go'.
Twenty years later the dream was not only realised by my migration to Australia (paradoxically for reaons quite unrelated to sailing) but well and truly exceeded by getting to try my hand at sailing a recently retired 18 footer (strangely, after two outings I was not invited back).
But despite living and sailing in Sydney for more than twenty years it has taken a Frenchman to get me out there and finally photograph the 18s.
French sailing photographer Christophe Favreau has made his annual pilgrimage to Sydney for the JJ Giltinan Championships and he needed to do little to persuade me to join him for a day of shooting yesterday.
Christophe, who is also here to shoot the 505 World Championships in Hamilton Island later this month, is far too modest to blow his own trumpet so for those not familiar with him and his work, take a look at some of his pictures of the 18s on Sail-World over the last week.
Christophe's photos of the fleet taken during the spectacular racing of Tuesday's nor'easter are impressive enough but it is his images taken from a short swim in the Harbour on a very quiet and grey Wednesday that provide a good lesson to any aspiring sailing photographer on how to make the most of what might otherwise be a tough day at the office.
Crosbie Lorimer also did his best with some difficult light and modest breezes yesterday to capture these images of the day's events.