Please select your home edition
Edition
PredictWind.com 2014

International 18 Skiff Regatta Day 1 - Kiwis on top

by Rich Roberts on 28 Aug 2012
New Zealand’s C-Tech team of Alex Vallings, Chris Kitchen and Josh Melonick swept the first two races - International 18 Skiff Regatta 2012 Day 1 Rich Roberts © http://www.UnderTheSunPhotos.com
Nespresso International 18 Skiff Regatta, hosted by the St. Francis Yacht Club, is currently underway in San Francisco, California.

From first to last to first again… what sort of Kiwi capers are these bold intruders from New Zealand pulling in the Nespresso International 18 Skiff Regatta?

'We're just chipping away,' skipper Alex Vallings said after he and his C-Tech crew of Chris Kitchen and Josh Melonick swept the event's opening day races the hard way with a remarkable comeback in the second race Monday.

The top five among 18 boats was filled out by Australia's Jonathan Witty, Grant Rollerson and class icon John Winning and six-time winner Howard Hamlin from Long Beach, Calif. down the coast.

Although there had been some doubt whether there would be any racing at all on the frenzied heels of the AC45s' America's Cup World Series on the weekend, 18 boats hit the race course on an uncommonly warm San Francisco day in the mid-70s, some struggling to stay upright a modest 16 knots of breeze in the late stages of a flood tide by the time the first race got under way at 5:21 p.m. PDT.


C-Tech passed the early leader, Australian veteran Grant Rollerson, halfway down the first downwind leg of the two-lap course and was never challenged, but that wasn't its most impressive performance.

When the second race started C-Tech jumped the gun, had to whip back to re-start and quickly found itself around dead last chasing everyone else to the first windward mark inside the Golden Gate Bridge.

No problem. By day's end, as the sun settled under the bridge and a three-quarter moon rose from behind, the Kiwis were first to cross the finish line and arrive back at the beach fronting Crissy Field.

'We had good downwind legs,' Vallings explained, 'and we caught all the shifts, got some good puffs at the top mark. Then [on the second lap] we jibed earlier than the other guys who had trouble laying the bottom mark.'

That's a key part of the game sailing here: picking the currents and the shifts, skills which combined with boat speed are tough to beat.

Racing continues with two races Tuesday and Wednesday starting at 1 p.m., followed by a lay day Thursday before two more races late Friday climaxed by the traditional 7 1/2-mile Ronstan Bridge to Bridge Race from the Golden Gate to the Oakland Bay late Friday afternoon. The last two of 10 races will be Saturday.

The leaders
(18 boats; after 2 of 10 races)
1. C-Tech, Alex Vallings/Chris Kitchen/Josh Melonick, New Zealand, 1-1, 2 points.
2. Lumix, Jonathan Witty/James Hozack/ Marcus Ashley-Jones, Australia, 2-2, 4.
3. Black Swan, Grant Rollerson/Justin Healey/Marco Schurman, Australia, 3-4, 7.
4. Yandoo, John Winning/David Gibson/Andrew Hay, Australia, 5-3, 8.
5. CST Composites, Howard Hamlin/Matt Noble/Matt McKinlay, USA, 4-5, 9. Complete standings


St Francis Yacht Club website

Barz Optics - San Juan Worlds Best EyewearPredictWind.comSouthern Spars - 100

Related Articles

EFG Sailing Arabia – The Tour hangs in the balance after crucial Leg 5
Team Al Mouj Muscat edged across the finish line in Dubai just one second ahead of EFG Bank Monaco after intense racing In one of the closest leg finishes ever seen in seven editions of EFG Sailing Arabia – The Tour, Team Al Mouj Muscat edged across the finish line in Dubai just one second ahead of EFG Bank Monaco after 34 hours of intense racing from Doha.
Posted today at 11:45 am
Cruising Club of America names annual award recipients
The Cruising Club of America selected Michael J. Johnson (Santa Fe, N.M.) to receive Club’s Blue Water Medal for 2016 The Cruising Club of America (CCA) selected Michael J. Johnson (Santa Fe, N.M.) to receive the Club’s Blue Water Medal for 2016, awarded for his extensive cruising for over 40 years, covering more than 125,000 nautical miles and including an east-to-west circumnavigation below the five great southern capes.
Posted today at 4:02 am
JJ Giltinan 18ft skiffs - Replay Coverage of Race 3
Catch the latest race of the JJ Giltinan Trophy for the 18ft Skiffs, sailed on Sydney harbour. Catch the latest race of the JJ Giltinan Trophy for the 18ft Skiffs, sailed on Sydney harbour. Great coverage from the very knowledgeable team on the Camera Cat, including commentary from Peter Shipway, Bob Killick and Andrew Buckland.
Posted today at 3:41 am
Les Voiles de St. Barth - VORs in the spotlight
With curtain set to rise on Les Voiles de St. Barth in just over six weeks no fewer than 57 boats signed up for event With the curtain set to rise on the eighth edition of Les Voiles de St. Barth in just over six weeks (10 to 15 April, 2017), no fewer than 57 boats are already signed up for the event. Among these will be an impressive and rather unique fleet of Volvo Ocean Race boats, including both VOR 60s and VOR 70s.
Posted today at 3:05 am
Unreal acts of seamanship
It was a pleasure to watch Kiwi Conrad Coleman cross the finish line to complete his Vendée Globe. It was a pleasure to watch Kiwi Conrad Coleman cross the finish line to complete his Vendée Globe. He lapped the planet without using any kind of fossil fuels; just wind and solar to power an array of instruments as well as the all important (and power hungry) auto-pilot.
Posted today at 12:11 am
Vendée Globe – Slow down, you move too fast
The Dutch skipper has been forced to slow down to attempt to let the gales move away ahead of him in the Bay of Biscay. After the arrival of five skippers last week, there are now only two left at sea this morning: Pieter Heerema and Sébastien Destremau. The Dutch skipper has been forced to slow down to attempt to let the gales move away ahead of him in the Bay of Biscay.
Posted on 27 Feb
Vendée Globe – Why Pieter Heerema has to wait a little while longer
The Dutch skipper has less than 600 miles to go to reach Les Sables d’Olonne but is not likely to finish before Thursday The Dutch skipper has less than 600 miles to go to reach Les Sables d’Olonne, but is not likely to finish before Thursday, when he is expected to take seventeenth place
Posted on 27 Feb
11 boats to race the first ever GC32 Championship
Paul Kohlhoff, who represented Germany in the Nacra 17 catamaran at Rio 2016, is skippering SVB Team Germany Land Rover BAR Academy announced its squad for the 2017 season today. Like last year, the crew here is unusually being led by its bowman, in this case with former shorthanded offshore sailor, Rob Bunce, taking over from Neil Hunter, who has graduated up to the Land Rover BAR America’s Cup sailing team.
Posted on 27 Feb
RORC Caribbean 600 – A totally unique race
Close to 900 sailors from 30 different nations competed in the ninth edition of the RORC's classic offshore race. The 2017 edition will be remembered for highly competitive racing throughout the fleet, with American yachts winning the major prizes. The race was affected by unusual weather conditions, with a low pressure system sending the wind direction spinning through 360º of the compass.
Posted on 27 Feb
Land Rover BAR Academy with big ambitions in Extreme Sailing Series
Land Rover BAR Academy today becomes the final team to join the line-up for the season opener in Muscat Land Rover BAR Academy today becomes the final team to join the line-up for the season opener in Muscat, as it launches its second campaign in the world's leading global Stadium Racing circuit.
Posted on 27 Feb