Please select your home edition
Edition
Auckland On Water Boat Show

Kowabunga wins ASC Christmas Sprint and Australasian Ranking Series

by Hamish Nicol on 17 Dec 2013
Kowabunga sailing at ASC on a much calmer day David Singh
The South Australia Melges 24 fleet mustered for it's third three day regatta in five weekends on the open waters of the Gulf of St Vincent from Adelaide Sailing Club over the weekend 14/16 December. With Australasian Ranking Series points at hand, it was racing at it's hardest.

Once again PRO Mike Rogers and his team put on seven races for the fleet and once again the fleet revelled in sou' westerly and building sea breezes for some very close racing.

Like so much Melges 24 sailing in Adelaide it was to be a game of centimetres played out at speeds of up to 18kts with all boats now showing improvements even over the last regatta.

Dave Alexander and crew on Kowabunga! picked up 4 bullets and the regatta win on Sunday but by no means did the regatta go all their way. With Robbie Duessen's Red Mist returning to the fray on Saturday racing was to be nip and tuck all the way.

Race one and two saw consistent strength sea breezes in the 13-15kt range. Adrenaline, the winner of the previous two regattas started well by winning the first race with Kowabunga second. These boats exchanging honors in the second race with the rest of the fleet finishing in close order.

Saturday delivered a much different affair with surfers enjoying the breakers each side of the harbour giving a clue to what lay ahead. The sea breeze had arrived early in bright sunshine building on the existing south westerly with 18-22kts being seen and the bonus of a short sea mounting in the tide to the two metre mark. Accompanying the fresher conditions was the return of the official Red Mist crew (ineligible on the Friday night). Upwind was going to be challenging and downwind exhilarating and with Red Mist adding a front runner to the mix all knew it was going to be a strenuous day.

All teams had some serious blasting downwind and Kowabunga! and 'Mist served up the surf masters glamour shots just ahead of the following pack. Indeed Duessen's 'Mist were potentially even better value than their brace of second places and an OCS instead of first. Race 2 saw 'Mist get to the windward mark first but unable to turn with the main strapped on. Having opened the door Kowabunga! snatched the wave. Red Mist will surely eliminate such errors before Geelong. Same time Kowabunga! were similarly quick upwind keeping the pressure on and taking advantage of the openings and sailing flawlessly all day to take Saturday's three bullets. This had been stirring stuff as these two matched each other gybe for gybe in the downwind part of each race. Adrenaline, Gary Shanks' Outrage-us and Jason Ward's Concubine all finishing in close order but none quite matching the victors boat speed uphill in the conditions. A special mention must be made of Ken Abott and his crew on Zinzi. New to the fleet this year the team are now very close to the pace. Ken Abbott declared that the team were going about as fast as any had before sailing any boat of any size. Ken also added his appreciation of the professionalism and promptness of the ASC support team in collecting one of Zinzi's crew 'Splash' who had fallen overboard.

On Saturday evening all knew they had had a serious work-out and declared themselves tired but happy. There is really nothing quite like an Adelaide blow. Sunday was to be a little calmer with Red Mist taking the bullets followed by Outrage-us at finding form to take a brace of seconds.

Kowabunga! had won the overall very handily from a consistent Adrenaline with Red Mist third ruing perhaps Saturday's OCS and unable to recover from not being eligible for racing on Friday.

All the teams admit they still have work before Geelong and are under no illusions as to the challenge ahead. However all agreed that the format of three build up regattas preparing for the Nationals and then Worlds was effective with all fleet members being generous in sharing their learnings and insights.

The 2015 Melges 24 Nationals are being held in Adelaide and interest remains very high in the class, but in the meantime all Australian fleets are readiness for the travel to Geelong.

1st - Kowabunga - Dave Alexander, Dan O'Connell, John Heywood, Mark Wilson, Donna Evans
2nd - Adrenaline - Luke Stephens, Hamish Nicol, Luke Hooking, Ryan Kelly, Matt Pernini
3rd - Red Mist - Robin Deussen, Nick Deussen, Andy Dyer, Matt Hansen, Rachel Paterson
Schaefer 2016 Ratchet Block 660x82Naiad/Oracle SupplierInSunSport - NZ

Related Articles

Groupama Race – Between the north and Nouméa
Beau Geste arrived at 7:09am this morning, taking the third position on real-time, behind Vodafone and Scallywag. Beau Geste arrived at 7:09am this morning, taking the third position on real-time, behind Vodafone and Scallywag. The crew was very pleased about his race. The owner and skipper, Karl Kwok, compared the luxury and unspoilt landscapes from the East coast to Polynesia and the West coast to Cebu island in Philippines.
Posted on 28 Sep
68 yachts line up for the first two races of J70 World Championship
In the second race, conditions ranged from 18-25 knots with choppy seas which left more than one competitor on his side After three days of “non San Francisco” conditions over the wekend-85 degrees with sailors waiting around for wind while complaining of it being to hot in the parking lot-“San Francisco” came back. In the second race of the day, conditions ranged from 18-25 knots with choppy seas which left more than one competitor on his side with the gennaker up.
Posted on 28 Sep
Les Voiles de St Tropez - Eugenia Bakunova's view of Day 2
Not a lot of wind for the second day of racing at Les Voiles de St Tropez. Not a lot of wind for the second day of racing at Les Voiles de St Tropez. Eugenia Bakunova of mainsail.ru captured these images of the always picturesque classics as they sailed in a light breeze
Posted on 28 Sep
Legendary Mitch Booth to compete in St-Barth Cata Cup 2016
Sixty teams have already confirmed they will be competing in the event. As a triple world champion, Booth is no stranger to the F18. For this edition, he will be joined by Andy Dinsdale, a regular on the waters around St Barth.
Posted on 28 Sep
Les Voiles de St Tropez - Eugenia Bakunova's images from Day 1
Racing got underway in St Propez on the first day at Les Voiles de St Tropez with three dedicated race zones Racing got underway in St Propez on the first day at Les Voiles de St Tropez with three dedicated race zones, Nioulargue for the Modern yachts, Pampelonne for the Wallys and the bay for the 15 m JIs, racing in an even swell and glorious sunshine. Most of the Classic yachts are not due to set sail until the second day of racing. Eugenia Bakunova of mainsail.ru was on hand to capture the acti
Posted on 28 Sep
J-70 Worlds - San Francisco - Images from a fired up first day
Images and video of the opening day of the J-70 Worlds being run by the St Francis Yacht Club. Videographer and photographer, John Navas was on the water on the Berkley Circle, San Francisco for the opening day of the J-70 Worlds being run by the St Francis Yacht Club. Here's his view of the day in video and still images.
Posted on 28 Sep
Alcatel J/70 Worlds - Cut-throat competition on Day 1 in San Francisco
World Championship regattas always generate high-level competition World Championship regattas always generate high-level competition, but when you stack 68 of the world’s most popular One Design boats on San Francisco Bay in a crisp, late-September breeze, you can bet your last shackle that the competition will be ferocious.
Posted on 28 Sep
Les Voiles de St Tropez France – Day 2 images by Ingrid Abery
Photographer Ingrid Abery has provided this gallery of images from day two Photographer Ingrid Abery has provided this gallery of images from day two
Posted on 27 Sep
Panerai Classic Yachts - Images from Régates Royales - Final day
The final round of the Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge has concluded at Cannes in the 38th Régates Royales The final round of the Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge has concluded at Cannes in the 38th Régates Royales. Eugenia Bakunova of mainsail.ru was on the water at Cannes and provided this gallery of images from the Final Day - there ws no racing due to the obvious lack of wind - but the images are still excellent.
Posted on 27 Sep
Team France Jeune selects its group for Red Bull Youth America's Cup
Franck Cammas and Jacques Cathelineau reveal the group of 14 youngsters who will now train together to prepare From 5 to 9 September, the city of Toulon played host to the second phase of the selection process launched by the Filière d’Excellence Team France (TF Excellence Network). After five days of events, Franck Cammas and Jacques Cathelineau (the French Sailing Federation’s Technical Director) reveal the group of 14 youngsters who will now train together to prepare
Posted on 27 Sep