The seventh annual SeaLink Magnetic Island Race Week and another glamour day for the 55 boat fleet.
Principal Race Officer Denis Thompson send the Cruising monohulls and all the multihulls on the Cleveland Bay Marathon 23 nautical mile triangle race today, with the starts in 14-17 knots from the south east.
In the Multihull Racing division, Andrew Stranský’s Seven Seas 50 Fantasia, the series leader, with three line honours and handicap wins was an impressive sight as she hit the start line, at 15 knots. There was only one problem… she was 15 seconds early.
Peter Hawker’s F32c Carbon Credit was away very quickly with Alasdair Noble`s McMoggy was second. Mike Willcock´s Hot Options, the tri, was coming through quite quickly. Fantasia was now buried, she was at least two minutes reaching the start line again and she had lost momentum, hobby horsing at the back of the fleet.
Carbon Credit once again ahead of Fantasia but today she paid the penalty for the bad start and finished second on handicap behind the Credit. Third was Peter Berry’s Prescott Whitehaven J’Ouvert. Fantasia leads the series ahead of Alistair Noble’s Schionning Waterline McMoggy and Carbon Credit.
In Multi-Hulls Cruising the state of play remains the same with Mal Tynan’s Schionning Signature remaining in the lead ahead of Ian Johnson’s Lightwave Salacia and Geoffrey Sparkers-Car’s Lightwave 38 TwoShea.
In the Cruising Spinnaker Division 1 Robert Green, with the Pacific 50 Dream, took line honours ahead of Trevor Mudge’s Beneteau First 50 Nellie Myra. Dream won on handicap ahead of Nellie Myra and Doug Shields’ Jeanneau 54 Vanilla and The Dream Team are pretty much unbeatable eleven points ahead of ahead of John Raff’s Jeanneau 53 Kate.
In Cruising with Spinnaker Division 2, Line honours went to Paul Jackson with the Duncanson Run, Run, Run ahead of Mike Steel's Dufour 34 Boudicea. Peter McKenzie's Ross 7.8 Le Rossignol won on handicap today ahead of Barry Smith’s Noelex trailer sailor Tide Up and Stanley Barnes’ Supersonic 27 Librian, who today had her best start of the regatta. Overall series leader is still Colin Clark with the Beale Unbealeiveable ahead of Tide Up.
Huahine locked out
In the Cruising Non Spinnaker Division Nick Small’s Hanse 430 Huahine took line honours ahead of Dick Cerny’s Beneteau Oceanis Aussie Rules and Jacinta Cooper’s Beneteau 57 Mistraal.
Fast start for Falcon in Cruising Non-Spinnaker - SeaLink Magnetic Island Race Week 2013
On handicap Peter Cox’s Dufour 385 Valhalla won ahead of Russell Kingston’s Beneteau 423 Falcon and Aussie Rules. Falcon currently leads the series ahead of Huahine and Vanhalla.
Peter Cox Valhalla, today's Cruising non spinnaker race winner was very happy.
He said 'We had a brilliant start from the pin end, we had space and speed and we were up with the bigger boats in our 38 footer at the top mark and were still in contact near Cape Cleveland. We watched the three big boats sail away from us going downwind. We managed to hold off the series leader Falcon so that was a bonus.
'It was a beautiful race out there, a great event. We come up here every year from Cronulla in Sydney and have a great old time racing at Hamilton Island and here. The racing conditions are just great at Magnetic Island. We take six months out of the year doing that.
Townsville local Russell Kingston is leading the cruising non spinnaker division
‘We had our best start in years today. We held our position all the way up to Cape Cleveland. But then the wind softened off a bit and the boat needed a lot of breeze, she is an eleven tonne cruising boat. ‘The worst for us was that last run up after we went at Q the last time and had to come down to the finish line. The wind just dropped totally out and we were parked. We are optimists and we believe we will have 25 knots tomorrow.
In the IRC fleet dual Sydney Hobart winner Bob Steel is coming home with a wet sail, in this regatta, with two wins on both line honours and handicap in both IRC windward leeward races today.
The breeze was building towards 18’s in the prestart and the Beneteau 44.7 Shazam put in a first reef anticipating more. At the start Guilty Pleasures who then went right and Like A Diamond who stayed left chewing gas. It was certainly a gift for Piggott who is attempting to sneak up into second place in this division.
Guilty Pleasures IV over early ahead of Flying Cloud IRC start Day 4
In the first race Flying Cloud crossed the line close behind Guilty Pleasure IV to beat her on handicap. In the second race of the day Flying Cloud was second boat across the line with Guilty Pleasures IV back in fourth,. They went right off the line and were on the wrong side of the shift.
Overall Quest leads on nine points in this no drop regatta, from Guilty Pleasures IV on 12 points and Flying Cloud on 13 points.
The final race in the final regatta could decide the winner of the inaugural Queensland Season of Sailing Cup, with Flying Cloud now tied with Blackjack.
With the Townsville boat having two bullets in the first two races, for a change in placings between the second and third placed boats., Flying Clouds needs to beat their local rival by two places or more.
Bob Steel commented 'A good day, we started the regatta with a little rust, which seems mostly to have rubbed off. Our power to weight ratio in the light conditions told today. '
Tomorrow is the last day of the 2013 SeaLink Magnetic Island Race Week.
The local weather site Windville.com.au run by Townsville meteorologist Greg Connor forecasts winds of 16 knots from the east south east dropping to 14 knots at 1pm having gone 10 degrees left. Connor did much of his pHD thesis on Cleveland Bay seabreezes, so the micro forecasts are pretty reliable.
For sailors and race officals, this has been the stand out winner of the Queensland Best Weather Regatta of the Year Award and we suspect a vote at the sell out Presentation Evening at the Peppers Blue Blue deck in Nelly Bay tomorrow night would also have it voted the Most Fun Queensland Regatta of the Year Award.
Magnetic Island 2013 Course 21 & 22
News, images, results at www.magneticislandraceweek.com.au