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CYCA Winter Series winners announced

by Jennifer Crooks on 7 Jul 2013
The westerly breeze of 10-12 knots provided another spectacularly stunning CYCA Winter Series race day. http://www.SailPix.com.au">www.SailPix.com.au http://http://www.SailPix.com.au">www.SailPix.com.au
Cruising Yacht Club of Australia Winter Series divisional winners have been determined with the final race in the series pointscore, Race 10, being sailed in a moderate westerly breeze of 10-12 knots on another spectacularly stunning Winter’s Day.

For brothers Derek and Martin Sheppard, owners of Black Sheep, it was a fantastic way to end the Winter Series, winning today’s race propelled them to top of the leaderboard in Division A2, winning the series pointscore by two points from Kerisma (Grant Dawson and Brent Lawson).

'It was a great race today,' Derek Sheppard said. 'We were keeping our eyes on St Hilliers Quest (Tim Casey) and Balance (Paul Clitheroe), trying to maintain our margin with them up and down the course,' Derek Sheppard said.



Since purchasing the Beneteau 45, formerly Honeysuckle, in April this year, the Sheppards compiled a crew from the three previous boats they have sailed on to campaign Black Sheep in the Winter Series and the CYCA’s Blue Water Pointscore. 'The CYCA Winter Series has been a good learning experience for us. The crew was assembled from three boats that we’ve previously sailed on including St Jude and Kahoona and we’ve had a lot of fun learning how to sail our boat.

'We’ve been able to enjoy the series and get our families involved. It’s been a competitive but relaxed series – it’s a fantastic result. It puts us in great shape leading up to the Sydney Gold Coast Yacht Race at the end of this month,' Sheppard added. St Hilliers Quest finished third overall in the Division A2 series pointscore behind Black Sheep and Kerisma.



Kevin Whelan’s Beneteau 45 Reve won Division C on countback from Novocastrian Kym Butler and his Archambault 40 One For the Road. 'It’s my first season back racing and it’s a fantastic result. We’re an older heavy boat in excess of 10.5 tonnes and we still sport a 12 year old sail,' Whelan said.

'We had a great start in today’s race – we hauled in three boats on our way to the first mark. What gave us the edge today was using our spinnaker-pole set-up rather than the asymmetrical. We held this set-up all the way to Quarantine which gave us a good lead.

'We’ve had a good battle with Integrity and Quetzalcoatl all season even though Integrity beat us across the line today,' Whelan added. Cyrene 3 (Michael Selby) secured third place in the series pointscore behind Reve and One for The Road.

Race Officer Denis Thompson got the fleet of 114 away in 10-12 knots of westerly breeze that was consistent throughout the day. 'Today’s breeze has been probably the best of the Series – it was consistent in strength and direction giving competitors a lovely sail,' Thompson said.



For Kevin O’Shea’s classic Sparkman & Stephens-designed 36-footer Stormy Petrel, his 13th CYCA Winter Series was lucky as O’Shea won Division K overall from Star Ferry (John Conroy) and LuLu Belle (Peter Lewis). 'At the end of racing last week we knew we had won the series but we came out and enjoyed ourselves today,' O’Shea said

'We started a bit later today (on handicap) and managed to work our way through the fleet. Just as we reached Nielsen Park, we managed to overtake Takana (Paul Williams) and stay ahead of her until the end. This is my first divisional win in 13 years of competing in the Winter Series. The boat is going exceptionally well for her age (33 years) and I’ve got a great crew,' O’Shea added.

Christian Nicks’ Northshore 369 Valkyrie won Division J1 pointscore despite finishing sixth today. 'I’m very pleased with the outcome. We’ve finished one better than last year and the crew and I have had a great time doing it,' Nicks said. 'It’s our first series win since purchasing the boat three years ago.'

David McClean, who was helmsman for today’s race, dedicated their win to Rob Landers, who has also helmed Valkyrie throughout the series, as Landers has been in hospital recovering from an illness. 'We wish Rob a speedy recovery and the crew dedicate the win to him. The conditions throughout the series have been up and down but we’ve managed to handle the breeze and keep out of the rain!' McLean added. M (Steve Hatch) finished second behind Valkyrie with Europa (David Mason) third in the Division J1 series pointscore.

The three owners of the Beneteau 40.7 L’Attitude, Robert Hunt, Jon Short and Miles Bastick, were ecstatic with their Division J2 series win. 'The Winter Series has been a great learning experience for the three owners and we’ve all managed to win a race each when we’ve been at the helm, throughout the season,' Jon Short said.

'We’re still getting used to the new boat (the owners have stepped up from 34 footer to the 40 footer) and the crews have blended well together. It’s been great to see the spirit of the Winter Series alive and well – the camaraderie and competition is great and we can all celebrate our successes at the end of racing at the CYCA,' Short added.



Shaun McKnight and the Noakes Blue has bragging rights as the winner of Division H, from Noakes White (Peter Langman) and Broulee (Karen Hawkett and Brett Pearce). All three boats finished the series on equal points but Noakes Blue was named the divisional winner on countback.

'I can’t believe we won – it’s sensational and such a great feeling,' Shaun McKnight said. 'The CYCA Winter Series is just like the lottery – you never know what conditions are going to pop up. We’ve had a range of conditions but the last couple of weeks have been almost perfect and we’ve been able to take advantage of it as everything came together for us as a crew.'

Not even having Mike 'Coach' Fletcher call tactics on board Noakes White could give Peter Langman the upper edge although he managed to relegate his father Sean to fourth place in the series pointscore.

Damian Parkes’ Judel Vrolijk 52 Duende that won Division A1 was the lucky winner of the Noakes Group Lift and Stand package. The secret weapon onboard Duende was Tony Cable, the man who has competed 47 Sydney Hobart Yacht Races and holds the record for the most races sailed by an individual. 'Cable was calling tactics on the last leg and kept Brindabella, Quest, Equinox II and Vanguard at bay,' Donald Graham said. This is Duende’s second consecutive Division A1 Winter Series pointscore win.

Other divisional winners were: Assassin (Clare Crawford) Division B; Vamos (Tim Ryan) Division D; Devils Lair (Barry Crook) Division E; L’Eau Co. (Grant Pollock) Division F; Luce Change (Adrian McGrath) Division G; and The Goat (Bruce Foye) Sydney 38 Division.

The CYCA Winter Series concludes next Sunday 14 July with the Closing Ladies Day race for the Chris Lee trophy.

For full CYCA Winter Series results log on to website

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