Sail Port Stephens 2013 - on Tuesday the Commodore Cup fleet sailed the popular three Islands race offshore, around Cabbage Tree, Little and Boondelbah Islands.
Tony Outteridge (R) and Keith Jensen, fathers of 49er Olympic Gold Medallists Nathan Outteridge and Iain Jensen
The fleet started at 11am just off the Nelson Bay d'Albora Marina in a steady nine knot breeze and with a fast incoming tide most of the fleet headed to the northern side of the channel, where it’s shallower for the most tidal relief. Out amongst the Islands the breeze was stronger with gusts to 18 knots between Cabbage Tree and Little Island.
Once more Tom Woods Toy Story was the star line honours performer in Division 1, she is a high tech 36 foot boat, a canting keeler, and conditions have been perfect for her. She led most of the way but was just passed by the 61 footer Margaret Rintoul V in the last stages of the 16 nautical mile race.
Still an amazing feat for the small boat, perhaps the Lake Macquarie crew helps, on board Toy Story, there are two Gold Medal Dads Tony Outteridge and Keith Jensen - their sons Nathan and Iain Jensen (Goobs) won 2012 London Olympic Gold Medals in the 49er class for Australia.
After each day´s racing, each boat in the Commodore Cup fleet has its handicap adjusted, so yesterday’s runaway winner Toy Story, although less than a minute behind todays line honours winner Graham Mobuckson´s Margret Rintoul V, on handicap Toy Story was back in fifth place but still leads the series overall.
Warren and Kristy Buchan´s Colortile took handicap honours from Gunther Schmidt-Lindner´s Austmark and Howard Piggott´s Flying Cloud.
Tom Wood´s Farr 36 Toy Story
The Gold Medal Dads Tony and Keith were wearing matching Delta Lloyd (Olympic Class) Regatta shirts on board Toy Story today. Their sons have more than enough regatta shirts it seems.
Tony commented, 'Toy Story is a hot little boat, a bit like a big skiff, very slippery particularly with a bit of breeze up and then she really takes off.'
Keith agreed, ’the boat just really flies, we can match 16 foot skiffs downhill in the right conditions.
Yesterday we got line honours and the handicap wins, so our handicap just got a lot worse.
Tony added. 'We led most of the day. The big fella (Margaret Rintoul V) got us in the last stretch. Just water line length. But like everyone in this Cruising series, we are all having fun. We don’t take things too seriously.'
In Division Two, while Len Payne´s Kerinda again took line honours, from Anthony Paterson´s Tow Truck she was just fourth on handicap.
John Sprague´s Inception from Gosford Sailing Club took handicap honours, ahead of Russell Waddy´s All Sail Dancing Star and Mike Roper´s Ropabull, with Tow Truck fifth
Shore side Len Payne commented 'this is one of our favourite courses ad it was a lovely days sailing after the overnight rain for the whole fleet. For us everything went to plan except when we went a little close to the rocks around Cabbage Tree Island. We ran out of wind so we had no steerage. We couldn’t pull away because the island was right under us. But we edged away and it was a lesson learned.'
Len Payne, owner skipper of Kerinda
Today was the first day of the Junior regatta being sailed from the Port Stephens Sailing and Aquatic Club (PSSAC) in Salamander Bay. A core of the big fleet, are the very popular O´Pen Bic - plastic boats, made from ‘way cool recycled biros,‘ as the kids say, .
Full results for all divisions are online at www.sailportstephens.com.au
The final race in the Commodores Cup will start off the d’Albora Marina wall at 11am tomorrow.
On Thursday the sailors will have a day off, to enjoy more time with families, on and around Port Stephens
Then it’s the Australian Elliott 7 titles, the NSW IRC (Grand Prix) Championships and probably the best ever Performance racing fleet assembled in Australia, and a Performance Cruising division racing from Friday thru Sunday 21st April 2013.
Margaret Rintoul V finished off the Nelson Bay Marina wall