by Matt Owen
The NSW/ACT Laser State Championship titles were conducted at the Canberra Yacht Club with Lake Burley Griffin turning on a range of sailing conditions that were both challenging and extremely rewarding for sailors backing their judgement making the best use of shifts and pressure. Saturday saw an excellent thermal breeze allowing three races for each division with tight mark roundings and actively contested starts.
NSW/ACT Laser State Championship Canberra 2012
Sailors travelled from Victoria and all over NSW with 43 Full Rig, 36 Radials and 18 Juniors in the 4.7 Rig. Many radial sailors took the opportunity to jump into a full rig and this paid dividends for Bruce Paine who won the full rig title from Canberra Yacht Club followed by Shane Gaddes from Canberra and Rob Lowndes from Middle Harbour in third place. Bruce had excellent pace in the Canberra conditions and showed strong tactical judgement finding the right line of breeze upwind and off wind to score a well deserved win and receive the Laser State title block with names such as Tom Slingsby, Michael Blackburn, Colin Beashel and a history of Who’s Who in the Laser class on it.
The Race Committee and Canberra Yacht Club volunteers did an excellent job of running the regatta with the club lawn rigging area easily handling the 97 boats entered. With the upstairs part of the Club being operated by the Southern Cross Club the Lasers provided the perfect back drop to two weddings; one where the bride arrived on a Harley and parked next to Michael Mills’ Performance Sailcraft truck making for multiple photo opportunities.
The radials had a strongly contested fleet with Cam Hooper leading the way followed by the NSWIS Team members Nicholas Connor and Christopher Andersen from Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club. Cassandra Schlimbach from Canberra Yacht club was the lead female helm with Anita Smith in second. Many of the younger sailors in the radials are now preparing for Sail Melbourne and Sail Sydney events.
The racing in the 4.7 rig was tight and closely contested with Shaun Connor winning the series with Brodie Crossman in second and Christopher Phillips in third. Kelsey Hanrahan and Noah Taylor from Canberra Yacht Club enjoyed the local conditions with Noah scoring a bullet in race 4.
The talent emerging through the 4.7 and Radials sees the class well positioned for and strong future and Canberra Yacht Club looks forward to hosting future regattas.
PB250363 - NSW/ACT Laser State Championship Canberra 2012
PB250283 - NSW/ACT Laser State Championship Canberra 2012
Second in the 4.7 Brodie Crossman - NSW/ACT Laser State Championship Canberra 2012
Full Rig winner Bruce Paine - NSW/ACT Laser State Championship Canberra 2012