by Chris Murray
Well they promised it would blow.. and it did exactly that.. to get the Sharpies 69th National Championships underway. The 33 competitors from all around the country were greeted with a warm (water temp above 26 deg celcius), but blustery welcome on Waterloo Bay, Manly and the Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron.
Sharpie Nationals at RQYS
Only 13 boats completed the testing course with Wind speeds topping the 37 knot mark and quite a few retirements including a broken mast, and few boats requiring the famous Sharpie Code Flag Z.
Line Hounours and a Handicap victory went to the South Australian Sam McCloud SA928 (Warpig) from Adelaide Sailing Club, the current Queensland State Champion Q892 (The Gringerbread Man) sailed by young Sunshine Coast Female entry (and soon to be a Mum) Elke Hacker took out second place, whilst the current National Champion from Tasmania attempting to defend their title on T900 (One Hump or Two) was in third place.
The rest of the fleet was a scattering of past national champions, class legends and lots of locals including the Commodore of the Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron - Greg Clarke on his boat Q882 (McGees Property).
Racing continues with the first two heats of the seven race series tomorrow from 1pm.
Results and further information available on the RQYS website or clicK here to discover more about Sharpie Sailing.