The final round of the NSW Cherub State Championships was raced at Lane Cove 12ft Sailing Skiff Club and Yarra Bay 16ft Sailing Club on the weekend of 5 and 6 March. The final two races were tense affairs with first and second place overall up for grabs between the two leading boats and third also very open.
Saturday’s race at Lane Cove on Sydney’s upper harbour was sailed in a gusty south easterly that topped 20kts at times. The breeze, plus the normal upper harbour traffic, made the race a tactical affair with several changes of leadership. Local Lane Cove skipper Alison Chapman, who was the stand in skipper for Enough Rope, showed that despite having been out of the class for twelve month, she still has the touch to sail a Cherub fast. Working the gusts and shifts up the long first work she had Enough Rope close to the early leaders Lawrence Wakefield and Oliver Jones from Drummoyne in The Black Pearl. The two leading boats then played out a race long duel with places swapping regularly. Behind them the Championship was being fought out between current National Champions Trevor Fay and Nathan Chipchase in The French Tickler and Kris Fay and Liam Doyle in Wally. At the finish of the race it was Alison Chapman and Tom Drury in Enough Rope who held on to win, proving Chapman to be the master of the upper harbour. On the last downwind leg Wally slipped through The Black Pearl in to second place, with The French Tickler back in fourth.
The result set up a dramatic final race, with Trevor Fay on The French Tickler need to beat his son Kris Fay on Wally to take the series. The two were guaranteed the top two places.
On Sunday the fleet moved to Yarra Bay for the final showdown and faced a steady 10 to 15kt south easterly and flat seas. Brett and Ryan Lancaster on Causing Haavik made the most of the first work to set up a very narrow lead over The Black Pearl and Claire and Rolf Lunsmann on Alchemy. Well back in the fleet were The French Tickler and Wally who were sailing their own private race. At the bottom of the second run Tim and Nick Harrington on Cauchemar passed Causing Haavik and were never headed, sailing away to a convincing win that saw the take third place overall in the series. Causing Haavik held on to second with Alchemy finishing third. In the all important series decider The French Tickler did enough to sneak into fifth place, three places ahead of Wally. This result gave Trevor Fay his ninth NSW State Championship spread over fourteen years.
Overall, despite the clear points gap between the first two boats and the rest of the fleet, the series saw five different crews win races in a fleet where, in the words of the new State Champion skipper, 'The standard of sailing is improving all the time'. Thirty five Cherubs sailed in at least one of the nine races of the series and, with Trevor Fay stepping into a new boat for next season, the prospects for another very competitive series on 2011-12 are great. Cherub 2010-11 NSW State Championship Honours:
Trevor Fay and Nathan Chipchase, 3143 The French Tickler, Belmont 16ft SC
State Championship Runners-up:
2nd Kris Fay and Liam Doyle, 3144 Wally, Belmont 16ft SC
3rd Tim Harrington and Nick Harrington, 3164 Cauchemar, Lane Cove 12ft SSC
Junior Champion and Fist Woman Skipper:
Claire Lunsmann and Rolf Lunsmann, 3145 Alchemy, Lane Cove 12ft SSC
Kris Fay and Liam Doyle, 3144 Wally, Belmont 16ft SC
Brett Lancaster and Ryan Lancaster, 3158 Causing Haavik, Belmont 16ft SC
Best New Boat:
Adam Bolton, 3163 Never Ready, Bayview Yacht Racing Association
Most Improved Crew;
Jenifer Pagett and Andrew Stephenson, 3100 Everything Zen, Drummoyne SC