Please select your home edition
Edition
Barz Optics - Kids range

Amazing Australian A Cat titles - The New Kids did well on Day One

by Rob Kothe and the Sail-World Team on 4 Jan 2011
Andrew Landenberger takes out 1st place in race 2. His new DNA design boat with curved centre boards has proven to a force to be reckoned with - A-Class Cats Nationals Sailing Regatta Mia Hacker http://www.miahacker.com
Orange Power A Cat Australian titles 2011- Lake Cootharaba, Queensland. A record A –Class catamaran Australian Championship fleet of 73 of the single handed development class catamarans.

The sailing world is suddenly focussing on multihulls, with the 34th AC in San Francisco sailed in 72 footers and the pre-event circuit to be in 45 footers and the 2016 Olympics likely to see the Cats back, there is a lot of multihull action.

The A Cat class is booming world-wide and 'down under' is no exception.

Now we come to the Australian titles. It is certainly the strongest ever with an exciting bunch of ‘newbies’ - America’s Cup Dean Barker helmsman of Emirates Team New Zealand, a number of team members from Artemis, William Howden Great Britain Tornado Sailor and Extreme 40 specialist, Tornado dual Olympic Silver medallist Darren Bundock and seven times Tornado World Champion and back to join the A Class Mitch Booth, who as a featherweight youth won the 1993 A Cat World titles at this very same venue.

Queensland is awash with an area the size of France and Germany under water, but its not been as tough on the Sunshine coast just north of Brisbane.

A couple of days ago the extreme rain had the Lake right to the road. With the brown water levels dropping sailors now have a small area of beach for the A Class to reside for the Nationals event and that will expand if the sunny days continue.



Under blue skies sailing starting with 10 knots. Racing commenced at 1.00pm and the first race was started with a clear start (after three general recalls in Sunday's practice race).

The first race started clearly at the first attempt, with most of the acknowledged top skippers away at the pin end of the line.

Glenn Ashby, Seven times World A Class champion, and newly appointed coach to Team New Zealand, started fast and was in the top group at the top mark, made major gains down the first run, took the lead on the second beat and sailed away for an excellent win.

Behind Ashby, a small group fought hard and there were a lot of lead changes.

Darren Bundock, has an excellent start, headed left and found the shift, did well up the beats, but suffered down the runs but he surprised himself, sailing in his first ever A Cat race rounded the final windward mark behind Ashby, pursued closely by Andrew Landenberger and Steve Brewin.

Brewin, like Ashby has the technique and speed down wind and he quickly sailed through the novice Bundock and Landenberger to finish second overall, pushing Bundock to third , Landenberger to fourth, with the Queenslander Brad Collett taking out fifth position.

Dean Barker was a surprise; new to multihull racing has given notice that he is a fast learner, finishing a very credible six place.

The sky was still blue but the wind had built to 14 knots for the start of the second race.

First up a general recall. Principal Race Officer Stacey Brown after the multiple general recalls at the start of yesterday's practice race, did not hesitate, out came the black flag for the second attempt.

The A Cat King Glenn Ashby was soon flying. He might be short and chunky, hardly the best body shape for a trapeze event, but he makes up for it getting much much lower than any other sailor and he took another early lead.

But then a surprise, an atypical and costly error, he slipped whilst jibe setting and capsized when completing the rounding of the offset mark. He broke the tiller extension and was forced to hike the third beat holding on remarkably to finish 12th.

Bundock who had been sailing 20 metres behind his Tornado team mate, ducked around the crash site.

He said later’ I thought at the time, well that gives us mortals at least a little time before he just sails away from us.’

Again it was Bundock and Landenberger fighting for the lead. Landenberger sailed through on the last run to win. Brewin too mowed down Bundock to finish second across the line.

Dockside it was discovered Brewin had been on course side at the gin and he was disqualified.

This left Bundock with the second position, Brad Collett finishing third, Dean Barker fourth and the veteran A class competitor Scott Anderson in fifth position, who was probably wishing he not been helping Bundy in recent weeks get up to speed.



Ashby is as expected the form favourite, despite his untidiness in the second race. Steve Brewin, with two seconds across the finishing line, is just what everyone would expect from the perennial bridesmaid but the early disqualification will mean more conservative starts and in this tight fleet that means fighting for a lane and clear air.

Landenberger, Bundock, and Collett look like they will be in contention in every race. Dean Barker is the A Cat find of the year. An extraordinarily good effort from a monohull sailor and he can be expected to improve rapidly during the week.

Dockside came the analysis: Darren Bundock - ‘Pretty good for a new kid, I could not be more pleased. Mind you very easy conditions so we did not get found out.' Two really good starts, bit of a left hand track, got round the top mark in top three or four.

‘I have really good speed upwind, I think it’s a similar technique to other classes like f18 and tornado - feels the same, really missing the spinnaker to drag me down wind, and I seemed to be easy meat there.

Dean Barker Emirates Team New Zealand - ‘It was a great feeling in the second race to lead to the first top mark. We had some great sailing today and I am happy with a sixth and a fifth I still have a lot to learn and am looking forward to the rest of the week.’

William Howden Great Britain – ‘This was a fun day on my first A Class regatta. Perfect racing conditions today with good breeze. It is certainly going to be a good week of racing.

Glenn Ashby – ‘Great day of sailing with fantastic conditions. I’m certainly a bit frustrated with myself with slipping off the boat whilst gybing from the wire. A long way to go and some great sailing ahead!’

A hint of realism from Darren Bundock – ‘We might have had our places in the sun, we will see Steve and Glenn come through and the other 71 of us are here to keep them honest and fight for the scraps. ‘

Giacomo Yacht SaleNorth Sails NZ 2017 - 3DiCollinson and Co

Related Articles

America's Cup - Southern Spars AC50 build for Emirates Team NZ + Video
The Peter Blake skippered Steinlager 2 put Southern Spars on the map 27 years after Steinlager 2 put Southern Spars on the map with her unequalled clean sweep of the 1989/90 Whitbread Round the World Race, Southern Spars were called on to build Emirates Team NZ's America's Cup Challenger. Here's a look behind the scenes at the composite engineering process Southern Spars employ on projects ranging from Volvo OR spars, to Olympic bike wheels to an AC50
Posted on 1 May
Gladwell's Line - Timeout in Bermuda and a decision OTUSA will regret?
With Emirates Team New Zealand's AC50 now in Bermuda and being re-assembled, it is time to take a breath With Emirates Team New Zealand's AC50 now in Bermuda and being re-assembled, it is time to take a breath from what has been a hectic couple of months, both in Auckland and Bermuda. The third major Practice Session has concluded in Bermuda. This was conducted almost entirely if winds of around 16-25kts - starting to get close to the top end of the range for the AC50's.
Posted on 20 Apr
America's Cup - Glenn Ashby on hitting the AC50's sound barrier
These boats are incredible. The performance that can be achieved in light airs is the amazing thing. The big difference between the AC72, the America's Cup Class, used in the 2013 America's Cup in San Francisco and the smaller AC50 to be sailed in Bermuda, lies in their light and medium air performance. 'These boats are incredible. The performance that can be achieved in light airs is the amazing thing. In 7-8-9-10 knots of breeze, you are sailing at 30kts at times.
Posted on 18 Apr
America's Cup - Bernasconi on expected winning factors in Bermuda
ETNZ's Technical Director, Dan Bernasconi has let out a few clues as to where he thought the differences might lie Emirates Team NZ's Technical Director, Dan Bernasconi has let out a few clues as to where he thought the differences might lie once the six teams entered in the 35th America's Cup. 'We have had a great run', he says. 'We've had a few hiccups along the way, as always. But the boat is going really well. We are getting through manoeuvres very well. And we think our straight line speed is good.'
Posted on 18 Apr
America's Cup - Team NZ return fire at Coutts' social media bullets
Emirates Team New Zealand have corrected the allegations made by America's Cup organisers Emirates Team NZ have corrected the allegations made by America's Cup organisers in a media release on Thursday (NZT) over the team's daggerboard use. In the release, replayed by America's Cup Events Authority and Oracle Team USA CEO Sir Russell Coutts on his Facebook page. It was claimed that the Kiwi team had an issue with daggerboards and were using a rule they had not supported to keep sailing
Posted on 2 Apr
New Pacific 52 class makes its debut in San Francisco
The first of two new-build Pacific 52's from Auckland's Cookson Boats is now sailing in San Francisco. The first of two new-build Pacific 52's from Auckland's Cookson Boats is now sailing in San Francisco. Invisible Hand for San Francisco's Frank Slootman replaces his earlier RP63 of the same name. She will soon be joined by a second Cookson build, Bad Pack (Tom Holthus) from the same moulds. A third, RIO 52 is for RIO 100 supermaxi owner Manouch Moshayedi.
Posted on 18 Mar
Securely moored to the quay, or cast adrift?
With boating, you have to cast the lines off in order to go and get into it. With boating, you have to cast the lines off in order to go and get into it. However, when it comes to your insurer, you kind of expect that they’re going to be as bound to you as the standing rigging is to the mast, the ring frames to the hull, or the engine mounts to the runners, and the propellers to the shafts, skegs and cutlass bearings. Whom would you rather be insured with?
Posted on 15 Mar
Gladwell's Line - Of Carnage, Characters and Colour
About this time of an America's Cup season, the sap begins rising as new boats are launched About this time of an America's Cup season, the sap begins rising as new boats are launched, and Cup fans get their first sight of the various team designers' response to the latest America's Cup Class rule. In the monohull days, of course, we initially only got a partial glimpse thanks to the shrouding practices adopted by all teams to hide the nether regions of their America's Cupper
Posted on 13 Mar
So what’s it really like?
For ages now, these editorials have talked about multihull this, record that, outrageous boat speed and 24-hour runs For ages now, well it seems like that anyway, these editorials have talked about multihull this, record that, outrageous boat speed and incredible 24-hour runs. In their own very unique way they totally represent the technical avant-garde, and thank God for that. Where would we be without their impressive shapes, wonderful rigs, and now of course, foiling magic.
Posted on 6 Mar
JJ Giltinan 18ft - Kiwi Champion the subject of two protests in Sydney
Overall series leader Yamaha will have her position put on the line in a series of protest hearings on Friday Overall series leader Yamaha will have her position put on the line in a series of protest hearings Friday morning in Sydney. She faces two claims - both from Appliancesonline (David Witt). The first is an attempt to re-open the Hearing held on Wednesday morning after Yamaha was suffered damage in Race 3 as a result of a collision with a give way yacht, and Yamaha received redress of average
Posted on 3 Mar