by Sue Neales
The Sabot Week 2012 was off to a competitive start as Queensland junior solo sailors Maggie Bowden and Deklan Bulder battled their way to an action-packed title race for the beginner and intermediate fleet.
North Queenslander Deklan Bulder won the second one-up race in Sabot Week this morning off Brighton
Sailing in good breezes of between 10 to 15 knots, south Queenslander Maggie Bowden in 'Airwave' won the first race and came second in the second race, while her closest North Queensland rival Deklan Bulder in 'Robin Hood II' came fifth in the first race and won the second race.
In the first race, South Queenslander Helena Lambourne sailing 'Blitz' came second and Tasmanian Bailey Edmunds in Cool Change was third.
In the second race, sailed as winds stiffened, South Queenslander Christina Bowden on 'Think’n Pink' came in third behind her sister Maggie and Deklan Bulder.
In the two-up fleet, when sailors aged as young as seven and eight sail together with both a skipper and crew, Tasmanian pair Daniel Ragg and Charlie Rooks racing in 'Frantic' blitzed the fleet in both races.
But in both two-up races, it was a tight fight between two Victorian pairs right to the finish line, with Lallie Leckey and Ethan Hosking racing in 'Full Bore' just pipping close rivals Sophie Paterson and Amber Provis in 'Piranha' to second spot both times.
The senior fleet of 72 boats competing for six states in the 49th Sabot nationals is currently sailing the first and second races of the 10-race championships off Royal Brighton Yacht Club, which finish on Friday, January 4.
Hunter Vercoe, racing for the South Queensland team in 'Duck Hunter' yesterday marked himself as the boat to beat after winning the Invitation Race from Victorian Josh Galland in 'Whisper.'
The senior two-up fleet is also racing its first two races this afternoon, in a start just following the senior fleet,