Sail Mandurah in March – It’s a winner!

Acrospire IV powering up-wind.
Sail Mandurah in March Media
Huey remained kind and merciful, delivering a 15-20 knot westerly with a corresponding long-fetch sea state (and no rain) for the final day of the first ever Sail Mandurah in March. Principal Race Officer Ross Davidson sent all the fleets on the identical Regatta Triangle course, with the yachts making a colourful sight as they crossed tacks and gybes across Comet Bay.

The Sports Boats, contesting the ASBA WA State Championships, revelled in the conditions and enjoyed some thrilling surfing and planing rides. Once again, the Chris O'Keefe/Rod Beurteaux skippered Viper 640 Snake Charmer proved to be a cut above the rest, taking the race and the Championship with a 3, 2, 2.5, 1, 1, 1, 2, 1 scoreline.

After three bullets on day one, Rees Howell's Shaw 650 Octopussy pushed hard to hang onto the snake, achieving a well-deserved second place overall, with Nick Lewins sailing his Viper Fizz into third.

Drama in the WA Soling State Championship saw equal series leaders Ship of Fools (Rod Housego) and Grumpier Old Men (Rob Vos) hit the line ready for mortal combat. Regrettably, the Grumpies became Disappointed Old Men when their mast crumpled half way up the first beat, a misfortune that also earned them the Dick of the Day award.

So it was another state title to the wily Housego team, who gratefully accepted the historic Viking Longboat trophy with an impressive 4, 1, 1, 3, 1, 1 scoreline. The Grumpies were second and Dave Limpus' Mad Dora third.

In the Soling handicap series, Rick Ellis and Kim Marchant, sailing Knotted, won from the legendary Lance Rock in Stop Making Sense, with Mad Dora third.

The cut-throat Jib and Main division went down to the wire, with Acrospire IV's win in the final race just enough to edge out John Holder's Plus 16 on a count back. Local sailor Chris Clifton's Viking 30 Freyja was third.

Acrospire saviour Gary Martin (pictured) was also delighted to win the inaugural Oswald Family Perpetual Trophy for the Overall SMIM winner. Somewhat appropriately, the trophy is a mounted half-model of the 1987 America's Cup C 12 Metre KZ7 (one of the 'Plastic Fantastics'), autographed by Chris Dixon. Acrospire IV is an 84 year old International 9-Metre, lovingly restored by Martin to a standard of finish rarely seen outside museums - and she's fast!

Gary Martin (centre) and the Acrospire team with the Oswald Family Perpetual Trophy.
Sail Mandurah in March Media

A fast-finishing Mimi (Graham Stafford) won the Cruisers with Spinnaker division, on a count back from Chris Higham's Numbers Game. Fun specialists Gordon and Di Dunbar on Spritzig 2 rounded out the podium.

Higham's team had some consolation, however, taking out the inaugural WA Dufour Muster, from Mimi, Spritzig, Gofour and Knot Dreaming.

No prizes were awarded in the Multi-Hull division, as no contestant actually managed to finish a race!

The MOFSC members and staff put on an enjoyable, down-home regatta (with help, of course, from Huey) and would like to see everyone back next year, with a friend.

Next weekend the party resumes with the Halls Head Ocean Race and Point Robert Return - then the Easter dinghy regatta. Good times!

Full SMIM results are here

Snake Charmer (AUS 111) gets the jump on the fleet. - Sail Mandurah in March
Annette Walker

And now for something completely different - the Windrider 17 Tri Me. - Sail Manurah in March
Annette Walker

Shaw Thing was hot, but slightly off the pace. - Sail Mandurah in March
Annette Walker

Dufour WA Muster winner Numbers Game rolling the dice. - Sail Mandurah in March
Annette Walker

Acrospire IV wowed Mandurah with her beautiful lines, and solid results. - Sail Mandurah in March
Annette Walker