News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery : International Dragons – The winner is?

International Dragons – The winner is?

'..'    John Curnow ©

The real winner on Thursday, January 13, at the 2011 International Dragon World Championships was the weather. It managed to provide a consistent breeze of 5 to around 15 knots in the end, from the Eastern quadrant. The other group very much worthy of praise were Race Management along with the many officials and volunteers who made the two races on different courses possible and endured significant amounts of rain in the process.

It all started at 1.05, when the signal vessel, Tarni, indicated she was on station and the course, just South of Brighton on Melbourne’s Port Phillip, was also going to be 105. Degrees, that is. The rain had eased and the wind had settled too. At 1.10pm, the Answering Pennant came down and we were on. Clearly, the journalists and photographers on the media boat were not the only ones ready for some action, for when the start finally came at about 1.20pm, most of the fleet was over the line. The necessary general recall was used to reset the line to a new course of 100 degrees in a 5 to 8 knot breeze originating out of the East Sou’east.

A black flag indicated the committee would not tolerate another mass over the line before the start and at a quarter to two a clean start got away. It was slow over at the boat end and Nick Rogers from Tasmania got the best start down at the newly favoured pin end. The right hand side and middle blitzed for the first work to the top and by the time they got there it was the Danes who had done more than enough. Interestingly, this was a new Danish crew making a feature of themselves. Frank Berg, Soren Holm and Soren Kestel on My Way were certainly doing it their way and went on to win the first race of the day by around three minutes.

Russia’s Zenith was second around the mark with series leaders, Bunker Queen in third. Nick Rogers and crew on Karabos IX, was fourth there after their great start. Unlike earlier races, only a few crews chose to go for the gybe set. The lead group had certainly got away well and the fleet separation continued. By the time they got back to the bottom of the course, My Way were stretching their lead, but another Tasmanian entry, Ridgeway had got in to second place, with Zenith now in third and Karabos IX remaining in fourth. Spinnakers were another key aspect of the racing and some refused to go back in to the their holds in the bows on the vessels, without some additional massaging. On Scot Plamer’s New Zealand entry, Kotoku, they didn’t resolve it quickly enough and the Dragon’s ultra pointy bow made short work of slicing straight through the fine cloth.

Returning to the top again, My Way stayed out in front, Zenith returned to second spot and Scoundrel, from Western Australia, jumped in to third place. The ever consistent and reliable Bunker Queen was still there with a top ten spot. A lot of vessels used the left side of the course, which in turn meant they had to come back through the Starboard tackers with no rights. On public vessel did not even consider the rights of the racers and went through the leaders, pushing on in the direction of Melbourne. Thankfully, no one suffered too badly, despite the vessel casting a significant wind shadow. The polished German crew aboard Sinewave were involved with the Ukrainian crew on Bunker Prince in an issue when the latter tried to gybe set on top of the Germans after the rounding.

It was a genuine 10 knots from 100 degrees by now and had been true to that direction for the entire race. The race was shortened to finish at the bottom and as we went down past the fleet, it was clear that they were now spread out over at least two thirds of the leg. My Way finished with daylight well and truly in second. The winners by a true country mile did high fives all round and despite a small language barrier, they did repeat several times how ‘Great’ it was.

Indeed the whole finish was very spectacular with groups of up to six boats all arriving on the finish line within inches of each other. It was a very colourful way to finish, especially given how grey it was out there in the rain and all. Taking second place was Russia’s Zenith with Tasmania’s Karabos IX getting third. The very enthusiastic and animated crew on Scoundrel from West Australia were also in the top ten, but the crews at or near the top of the overall leader board were definitely in the top ten. Bunker Queen was fourth and Lawrie Smith’s Alfie was ninth.
The course for race five was moved North, back in front of Royal Brighton Yacht Club and at 4pm the official vessels were on station with a course of 095 degrees in about a 10 knot breeze. At about a quarter past four the start sequence commenced and the high levels of competitiveness ensured a general recall was going to occur. Time for the Black Flag to be brought out again. Unlike the first race of the day, where Indulgence from Australia was forced to sit the race out, no one had to endure that particular fate.

There was a steady light rain settling in, with a 10 to 12 knots blowing and the start at half past four was jam packed at the Committee Boat end. ‘No Room’ was the call of the day as crews clambered for position. With everyone looking to maximise the advantages the right seemed to offer, Scoundrel was the first to head out that way. A couple more followed and then most went back, clearly aiming to capitalise on a middle course and not push the edges of the course too far. The rain remained at the ‘pesty’ level with 8 to 10 knots originating from about 100 degrees.

There was a really big stack of the fleet on Port, coming in to the top mark for the first time. Sweden’s Ming got there first with My Way taking second and the Prince Philip Cup winners from last week, African Queen, getting third position at the rounding. There were some great names appearing in the top ten, but one in particular deserves a mention. Montana from Germany is the current Corinthian (all amateur) leaders and they were in sixth place.

Coming up beside the Committee Boat at the bottom mark, we learned that the second race would run the full five legs, with Principal Race Officer, Kevin Wilson, saying with a smile, ‘Can’t make it too easy for them!’ The Danes on African Queen would arrive first, the Sinewave and Ming in third. Other championship hopefuls occupied a lot of the other positions in the top ten. There were a couple of protest flags flying on vessels; Denmark’s Quicksilver III and Russia’s, I Feel Good. There is nothing outstanding as a result of the day’s racing, so all is well.

Indeed with the breeze gaining a bit of strength and the rounding marks absolutely crowded, there was always going to be a fair amount of argy-bargy as crews looked for advantages. Some spinnakers caused issues as well, especially aboard Australia’s Puff.

By the top, the German crew on Sinewave had taken over first position, which they would then not relinquish for the remainder of the race. My Way was second and Ming took third. Russia’s Olga White had to take two sterns as she approached on Port tack, which meant she ended up with fifth around the mark. There were a few taking on the gybe set and go back through the bulk of the fleet, now arriving on Port tack to join the queue going in to the mark.

Sinewave crew, once back on shore. - Dragon World Championships -  John Curnow ©  

The bottom mark for the last time on the day was a lot cleaner than the previous one, no doubt due to increasing separation in the fleet. As a result, there were no real surprises on the board as they went around. Germany’s crew on Fiasco recovered their spinnaker from under the boat and continued on, which added some colour to the equation.
At the top and only metres from the host club, Sinewave won comfortably, with My Way in second and Ming in third. Sinewave’s skipper, former World Champion, Tommy Müller was, ‘Delighted to work our way to the top and stay there to get the win. It is so competitive out there’, which is a sentiment endorsed by many around the quay as they pack up from a hard day’s racing. Crewmen Michael Lipp and Vincent Hoesch then added, ‘We didn’t win the first half, so the pressure is on to take out the second!’

In a day that kind of belonged to the Danes and the Corinthian leaders it is important to remind everyone that the 2011 International Dragon World Championships end this Saturday, January 16. After the last race there is a gala dinner at the Brighton International. At that time, in addition to the champions being crowned, the six regatta flags created for the event will be auctioned off for the Queensland Premier’s Appeal after the devastation that has been wreaked through the State recently and caused the amazing weather endured by the competitors in Melbourne. These wonderful and colourful flags feature all competing nations national flags.

Racing continues on Friday, now that the Answering Pennant looks like being lowered shortly. With many crews still able to make an impression on the leader board, it will remain very competitive. Indeed, places on the dais have been won and lost during the regatta with great regularity.

For further information, click here

Highest placed Australian crew - Scoundrel, who are in eighth place overall. - Dragon World Championships -  John Curnow ©  

The crew from Denmark's My Way crew were pretty happy about their day's efforts. - Dragon World Championships -  John Curnow ©  

Germany's Montana is leading the Corinthian charge. - Dragon World Championships -  John Curnow ©  

The Ocean Liner had had enough of the weather too - and departed. - Dragon World Championships -  John Curnow ©  

Fleet action going into the hitch mark - Dragon World Championships -  John Curnow ©  

Melbourne and most of Port Phillip is under this radar image. - Dragon World Championships -  John Curnow ©  

by John Curnow


Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

2:02 PM Thu 13 Jan 2011 GMT

Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.

Click for further information on
2011 Dragon Worlds

Related News Stories:

17 Jan 2011  Dragon Worlds images by John Curnow
16 Jan 2011  Dragon Worlds: How the last race unfolded
14 Jan 2011  International Dragons – Golden Girl returns from 1956
11 Jan 2011  International Dragon World Championship – Waiting, waiting, waiting
11 Jan 2011  Images of Melbourne - 2011 Dragon Worlds - Day 2
10 Jan 2011  Images from 2011 Dragon Worlds: Day 1 on Port Philip Bay
10 Jan 2011  More Images from 2011 Dragon Worlds: Day 1 on Port Philip Bay
10 Jan 2011  Images from 2011 Dragon Worlds: Day 1 on Port Philip Bay
10 Jan 2011  Images of Melbourne - 2011 Dragon Worlds
09 Jan 2011  International Dragons – First day a tough day at the office

News - USA and the World

470 Men and Women Worlds - Champions decided in Santander by International 470 Class Association,

Big Boat Series - It's not the size, it's the length by Erik Simonson, Pressure-Drop.US,

ISAF Sailing Worlds, Santander - RS:X winner images by Barbara Sanchez
ISAF Sailing Worlds, Santander - Rio 2016 470 spots awarded
52 Super Series 2015 - Outlook looks hot for the 52 Super Series
Starboard Hatteras Wave Jam - Another early start on day 4
ISAF Sailing World - First entry leaves sailor's reputation in tatters
2014 Chicago Match Cup - Four go through to quarter finals
470 Men and Women Worlds - Champs take over leaderboard
ISAF Sailing World Champ - Buckingham finishes with career-best result
America's Cup: Oracle's Larry Ellison to step down as CEO
Classic Yacht Regatta - Sonny takes top classic prize
ISAF Sailing Worlds, Santander - Buckingham finishes with career best
ISAF Sailing Worlds, Santander - Rio 2016 RS:X spots claimed
ISAF Sailing Worlds - Leaderboards shaping up in Santander + Video
ISAF Sailing Worlds, Santander - Giles Scott continues to extend lead
ISAF Sailing Worlds, Santander - Day 7 images by Sailing Energy
ISAF Sailing Worlds - Laser and Radial winner images by Jesus Renedo
ISAF Sailing Worlds, Santander - Medal Race images by
ISAF Sailing Worlds - Dutch dominate Laser and Radial in Santander
Royal Cup Marina Ibiza - Quantum Racing more than doubles overall lead
J/24 World Championship - Excitement builds for Newport racing
Volvo Ocean Race - Seb Marsset joins Team Alvimedica   
Fall Seamanship training opportunities at New York Yacht Club   
Rolex Big Boat Series: More images from San Francisco - Final Day   
AWT Hatteras Wave Jam action commences on day 3   
Rolex Big Boat Series: Images from San Francisco - Final Day   
ISAF Sailing World Championships - Watch medal races live here   
Hobie 16 Open North American Championships and Pan Am Games qualifier   
ISAF Sailing World Championship - Videos from Santander   
ISAF Sailing Worlds: Buckingham into Medal Race, 470's stay consistent   
470 Men and Women Worlds - Vadlau and Ogar into pole position   
2014 Chicago Match Cup - Defending champion on top   
ISAF Sailing Worlds, Santander - Strong competition for RS:X fleets   
ISAF Sailing Worlds, Santander - Big breeze on day 6 + Video   
ISAF Sailing Worlds, Santander - Buckingham into Laser Medal Race   
U.S. Multihull Championship - Hobie Alter Trophy to be decided   
ISAF Sailing Worlds - The kind of form most sailors only dream about   
Royal Cup Marina Ibiza - Quantum Racing ahead of target   
ISAF Worlds Santander - 19 Rio 2016 Laser Radial spots awarded   
Santander 2014 ISAF Worlds - 21 broadcasters to take live coverage   
Rolex Swan Cup - Looking forward to the next 30 years   

For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News  

Switch Default Region to:

Social Media





New Zealand

United Kingdom

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World






Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text


Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery


Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery





Privacy Policy



Cookie Policy



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT