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Etchells Australian Championship Day One – Right was so Right

'Rex Gorell Prestige Etchells Australian Championships 2011, Royal Geelong Yacht Club (AUS) Race 1 - 10/01/11 Stormy skies'    Teri Dodds ©

Rex Gorell Prestige Etchells Australian Championship 2011 Day one, Corio Bay, Geelong Victoria.

Sailing teaches you patience – as everyone knows. And so it was on day one of the Rex Gorell Prestige Etchells Australian Championship 2011. After two hours delay on the millpond called Corio Bay the breeze came in from the east north east at around five - six knots enabling Principal Race Officer Greg Sinclair to gun the fleet away in the steady rain.

Damien King and his Barry crew from the pin sailed up the edge of the left hand breeze line.

Inside him was local sailor Brendan Garner, The Moe Szyslak Experience and Gary Smith’s Are We There Yet? Further up the line another five boats, was Michael Hiatt’s Extra Bad Doll and then almost midline was 2010 Etchells World Champion John Bertrand’s Triad.

At the Committee boat end, John Savage on Black Knight, caught well up the course in the very lightest of breezes, sailed back behind the line under spinnaker just 30 seconds before the start, flopped over and headed right.

Savage explained later 'Our decision was reinforced when we were bounced away by Jake Gunther’s The Boat.'

Also at the Committee boat and heading right was Mark Bulka, with midboat Stuart Nichols and on bow Glenn Ashby, the six times A Cat World Champion, back in an Etchells for the first time since the Perfect Balance trio won the 2004 Etchells Australian Championship in Adelaide, South Australia.

Initially the breeze went a little left. King looked good in the best pressure on the course initially, then the lead shifted towards the mid-liners. Extra Bad Doll looked OK, then it seemed Bertrand (Triad) was in the lead, but two thirds of the way up the beat, the wind sailed to the right.

The Right was now Right. Around the top mark went Savage just ahead of Bulka. Some good work from Bulka's team and they hit the front and soldiered down the run toward the bottom mark.

With the breeze fading the course was shortened and the two boats finished in that order at the bottom mark.

Behind them there was daylight. Ten minutes later Brad Sheridan (US Forces) crossed in third place. The left hand leader King (Barry) was third last. Bertrand was in the 20’s.

Perfect Balance Crew (L-R) Skipper Mark Bulka, Stewart Nichols and Glen Ashby - Rex Gorell Prestige Etchells Australian Championships 2011 -  Teri Dodds?nid=79042 ©  
Dockside Mark Bulka commented 'yesterday in the Practice race we had a glamour start on the pin, speed and a clear lane. We figured we were famous until we looked up and saw the breeze going hard right. That was the end of us.

‘With today’s forecast and that experience, we decided we had to go right. We were third down from the boat. We were not hard right; there were at least seven or eight boats outside us. But by the time we reached the top mark, the wind had swung to 110.'

PRO Greg Sinclair and his team notified a new course of 110 and the leaders headed for the new mark.

Then in Sinclair’s words ‘It all went pear shaped. With the lead boats heading down the course it was too late to pull the pin.’

While the two leaders Bulka (Perfect Balance) and Savage (Black Knight) finished in very light two-three knots at that heading, behind them the breeze lifted to five knots but the wind shifted back to 050.

It was a tough day at the office and the bad news is the conditions look like they will be even lighter tomorrow.

2011 Rex Gorell Prestige Etchells Class National Championship

Hosted By Royal Geelong Yacht Club

Race 1   (11/01/2011)  Updated:  11/01/2011  16:03:17

OD results Start : 14:25:00
Place Sail No Boat Name Elapsd Skipper Score Fin Tim Bow No DidNot
1 AUS1387 PERFECT BALANCE 01:01:59 Mark Bulka 1.0 15:26:59 32  
2 AUS1237 BLACK KNIGHT 01:02:22 John Savage 2.0 15:27:22 37  
3 AUS866 US FORCES 1223 01:12:42 Brad Sheridan 3.0 15:37:42 66  
4 AUS1082 ALCHEMIST 01:12:55 Richard Hammond 4.0 15:37:55 72  
5 AUS1318 BANANAS IN PYJAMAS 01:13:18 Tim Ede 5.0 15:38:18 31  
6 AUS1049 VERTIGO 01:13:21 Doug Williams 6.0 15:38:21 49  
7 AUS991 THE BOAT 01:13:23 Jake Gunther 7.0 15:38:23 20  
8 AUS1274 THE NURSE 01:13:28 Ross Loyd 8.0 15:38:28 74  
9 AUS1366 PEDRO 01:13:29 Kirwan Robb 9.0 15:38:29 14  
10 AUS1026 JACK S HUT 01:13:40 Noel Drennan 10.0 15:38:40 52  
11 AUS1367 CHILLI PLUM 01:13:52 Doug Kerr 11.0 15:38:52 67  
12 HKG1269 RACER X 923 01:14:17 Mark Thornburrow 12.0 15:39:17 17  
13 AUS1338 CRITICAL BALANCE 01:14:36 Mark Langford 13.0 15:39:36 19  
14 AUS882 JUKES OF HAZZARD 01:14:54 Brendon Jukes 14.0 15:39:54 16  
15 AUS1144 RAPSCALLION 01:15:00 David Hearly 15.0 15:40:00 44  
16 AUS1254 ODYSSEY 01:15:25 Peter Merrington 16.0 15:40:25 54  
17 AUS940 NORTH STAR 01:15:46 Michael Coxon 17.0 15:40:46 40  
18 AUS1293 THATS LIFE 01:15:53 Ian Crisp 18.0 15:40:53 23  
19 AUS994 CREWS CONTROL 01:16:25 Paul Minter 19.0 15:41:25 34  
20 AUS1361 DAWN RAID 01:16:37 Stephen Gunther 20.0 15:41:37 36  
21 AUS1277 MID GYBE CRISIS 01:16:43 Wayne Dixon 21.0 15:41:43 77  
22 AUS1385 CONCUBINE 01:17:58 Jason Ward 22.0 15:42:58 28  
23 AUS1164 B SQUARED 01:18:23 Gary Boyd 23.0 15:43:23 64  
24 AUS1383 TRIAD 01:18:54 John Bertrand 24.0 15:43:54 33  
25 AUS865 FAST FORWARD 01:19:06 Bruce Mc Briar 25.0 15:44:06 65  
26 AUS1358 ARE WE THERE YET ? 01:19:10 Gary Smith 26.0 15:44:10 58  
27 AUS947 MAGPIE 01:19:11 Graeme Taylor 27.0 15:44:11 27  
28 AUS1129 STRETCH 01:19:29 Caillin Howard 28.0 15:44:29 29  
29 AUS1275 TREKKA 01:20:13 Cameron Barton 29.0 15:45:13 75  
30 AUS1253 MIRAMAR 01:20:21 Mark Doyle 30.0 15:45:21 53  
31 AUS1391 TANGO 01:20:26 Chris Hampton 31.0 15:45:26 39  
32 AUS651 ON A MISSION 01:20:36 Malcolm Blom 32.0 15:45:36 10  
33 AUS747 FUNCTIONAL OVERLAY 01:20:56 Niesje Hees 33.0 15:45:56 47  
34 AUS1021 BUSHFIRE 01:20:58 Jervis Tilly 34.0 15:45:58 21  
35 AUS876 FIFTEEN 01:21:09 David Clark 35.0 15:46:09 15  
36 AUS1024 VOODOO SPIRIT 01:21:19 Guyon Wilson 36.0 15:46:19 12  
37 AUS1389 SMOKING GUN 01:21:21 Robert Hanna 37.0 15:46:21 38  
38 AUS1278 EXTRA BAD DOLL 01:21:22 Micheal Hiatt 38.0 15:46:22 78  
39 AUS1374 SLIPPERY WHEN WET 01:21:35 Simon Cunningham 39.0 15:46:35 42  
40 AUS961 BACK IN BUSINESS 01:21:39 John Coates 40.0 15:46:39 61  
41 AUS948 SMILE N WAVE 01:22:04 Graeme Alexander 41.0 15:47:04 48  
42 AUS1226 BAD DOLL 01:22:17 Thomas Braidwood 42.0 15:47:17 26  
43 AUS1025 WALK ON WATER 01:22:24 Glenn Norton 43.0 15:47:24 25  
44 AUS1189 THE ARCHER 01:22:42 Clark Swan 44.0 15:47:42 18  
45 AUS1288 GOOD VIBES 01:22:48 Robert Holm 45.0 15:47:48 22  
46 AUS1141 MENS SHIRTS 01:22:56 Peter Stubbings 46.0 15:47:56 41  
47 AUS1131 THE MOE SZYSLAK EXPE 01:23:05 Brendan Garner 47.0 15:48:05 11  
48 AUS913 NEVER ENOUGH . . . . 01:23:31 Andrew Telford 48.0 15:48:31 43  
49 AUS924 BARRY 01:23:59 Damien King 49.0 15:48:59 24  
50 AUS1335 FREE ADVICE 01:24:27 Mary Hanna 50.0 15:49:27 35  
51 AUS511 GRAND V 01:25:58 Gordon Hinds 51.0 15:50:58 51  


by Etchells Australian Championship 2011 Media


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