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
Ancasta Ker 33 660x82Barz Optics - Kids rangeSouthern Spars - 100

Related Articles

Impressive line-up of 121 yachts preparing to grace the Rolex Swan Cup
The fleet will be divided into six classes and contest five days of racing in most challenging sailing environments. Memorable because 2016 marks the 50th anniversary of the launch of the very first Swan yacht; an opportune moment to celebrate both the heritage and the continued evolution of one of the leading - and most distinctive - marques in the sailing world.
Posted today at 4:44 pm
Hollandia wins 8 Metre World Cup
After nine race series, Netherlands' Hollandia wins it with eight points. The racing took place in a range of conditions After a five day, nine race series, Hollandia of the Netherlands wins it with eight points. The racing took place in a range of conditions and Hollandia managed to win every race.
Posted today at 3:19 pm
Volvo Ocean Race - Enright and Towill ready to go again in 2017/18
Team Alvimedica skipper Charlie Enright and his long-time buddy Mark Towill are eager to put their experience to use. Team Alvimedica were the youngest team in the race last edition, and now skipper Charlie Enright and his long-time buddy Mark Towill are eager to put that experience to use. Volvo Ocean race's Jonno Turner caught up with Mark and Charlie to chat about everything from the transition back into 'real life', their reflections on the 2014-15 campaign - and the future.
Posted today at 9:57 am
Noroton Yacht Club takes the NYYC Grandmasters Team Race Trophy again
The yacht club from Darien, Connecticut, still out sailed every other club on the water. Every August the biggest question for the NYYC Grandmasters Team Race Regatta is whether this will be the year that Noroton Yacht Club's winning streak ends. Yet even after the age minimums were raised by five years and the event was expanded to 10 teams and three days to stiffen the competition, the yacht club from Darien, Connecticut, still out sailed every other club on the water.
Posted today at 3:48 am
The door’s been flung open – again
Now whether it was the Champagne or something far more ethereal, there is the chance that sailing gets sexier for Tokyo Now whether it was the Champagne or something far more ethereal, there is the chance that sailing may get sexier for Tokyo 2020. Yes, the proverbial door has been cast ajar before, often to much fanfare, and not that much has been achieved.
Posted on 28 Aug
Michael Illbruck crowned 2016 Melges 20 World Champion
Although not a simple task, Freides aimed to keep Illbruck behind him, or at minimum out of top nine ranking. Hosted by Marina di Scarlino/Club Nautico Scarlino, the World Championship was the most successful to date featuring four days of incredible sportboat racing.
Posted on 28 Aug
Freides defends leadership at Melges 20 World Championship
The one and only race that was able to take place at the 2016 Melges 20 World Championship was a difficult one at best 2016 Melges 20 World Championship - The one and only race that was able to take place at the 2016 Melges 20 World Championship hosted by Marina di Scarlino/Club Nautico Scarlino was a difficult one at best, however managed to present some nice new faces at the front of the fleet.
Posted on 28 Aug
Clipper Round the World Yacht Race - Crew catch up - Meet Dhruv Boruah
After crew members have completed their global ocean adventure, some go back to their previous lives and occupations After crew members have completed their global ocean adventure, some go back to their previous lives and occupations, some decide on a future in the marine industry, some take time out to assess their next move in life and others seek their next challenge.
Posted on 27 Aug
Changing of the Guard at Melges 20 Worlds, Freides takes over
The second day of racing at the 2016 Melges 20 World Championship featured two races under shifty conditions 2016 Melges 20 World Championship - The second day of racing at the 2016 Melges 20 World Championship hosted by Marina di Scarlino/Club Nautico Scarlino featured two races under shifty conditions, shaking up the standings and making Drew Freides' Pacific Yankee the new leader with a one point advantage over Michael Illbruck on Pinta now seated in second place.
Posted on 27 Aug
Vendée Globe – Yann Eliès and his team relaunch 60-ft IMOCA in Lorient
Yann is now on the final stretch before the event and will be taking part in the three training courses. Yann is now on the final stretch before the event and will be taking part in the three training courses organised at the Finistère Ocean Racing Centre in Port-la-Forêt (Brittany). He will also take part in the Azimut Trophy. Yann Eliès tells us about the work that has been done and what lies ahead in the final part of his preparation.
Posted on 26 Aug