sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery

 

Sail-World.com : SAP 505 World Championship - Veteran takes on the pros

SAP 505 World Championship - Veteran takes on the pros

'Earle Alexander - giving the young blokes a run for their money - SAP 505 World Championship'    Christophe Favreau ©

SAP 505 World Championship - Sailing is one of those sports where even at the elite level, age can be a benefit rather than a barrier, and that is the case with 67 year-old Brisbane skipper Earle Alexander, who is competing at the 2011 SAP 505 World Championship at Hamilton Island this week.

Alexander, who will turn 68 in June, and is a survivor of prostate cancer, reckons big boat yacht racing 'is for old blokes – and I’m not old enough.' That line has insulted some big name yacht racers, but Alexander doesn’t care. He wants to keep sailing the highly technical and fast 505 double-handed trapeze dinghy.

Not only is the dinghy a hard one to sail, Alexander has pitted himself against some of the world’s finest sailors, including Olympic medallists, Volvo Ocean Race crews, America’s Cup sailors and quite a few world champions from various classes, including the 505. He is currently 37th in the 85-boat fleet.

Age has not wearied this competitive sailor who, 'mucked around in Moth’s at Balmoral in Sydney where I was born.' However, university study, then his career as a mining engineer, took precedence over everything else when the sailor moved to the bush.

Eventually, he married, had children and moved his family to Mt Isa in Queensland. While living there, Alexander bought a Corsair and sailed it with his sons on the dam. A few years later, his sons grew and pursued sailing with friends.

Both Kim and his younger brother Nick won 420 double-handed sailing national titles – both with recognised Olympic campaigners of the future, Adrian Finglas and Teague Czislowski. It tells plenty about their ‘old man’s’ sailing talent.

Alexander moved to Brisbane, and in 1985, purchased his first 505 as a member of the Humpybong Yacht Club. Dave Porter and Dean Blatchford were just two of the famous names who came to help set the class up.

There were half a dozen or so 505 dinghies at the Club, which prompted the veteran sailor to buy one. He hasn’t looked back and still relishes every opportunity to sail. 'Everything in moderation though. You have to make time for your family, work and other things too,' Alexander states.

He and crew and friend of 25 years, Australian 505 president Ian Gregg, have sailed together for six years now. 'I was very ordinary for a long time. I didn’t really get it (how to sail the boat) until Ian came along,' Alexander says.

Now sailing at Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron, Alexander admits: 'We took a quantum leap from there, because we started calibrating the rig and settings. We got a lot of help from people like Howie Hamlin (USA), Ian Pinnell (GBR) and Holger Jess (the German 505 builder and competitor).

'Those guys are the best and they’re happy to share their knowledge. Why reinvent the wheel when you can get what you need from these guys,' he asks.

An exponent of the class, Alexander says: 'I love the 505’s. They’re good in all conditions. I once sailed at Hayling Island (UK) and we got a 42 knot gust and we were still sailing along OK.

He still remembers his and Gregg’s best result, a sixth at the 2008 Nationals, also sailed at Hamilton Island. 'We won on the windiest day, and backed up for second the next day, which was also windy. I love the big weather best.'

There are some, but not so many guys still sailing dinghies and skiffs into their sixties. Alexander puts some of his fitness down to, 'eating properly and sailing as much as I can.'

When questioned, rival competitors confirm Alexander is competitive, and not just there to make up the numbers. They find him inspirational – and why wouldn’t they? These are not easy boats to sail.

'I got prostate cancer five years ago and luckily I recovered. From that, I’ve learned to be more relaxed and to stay fit; and that’s a good thing, because I travel the world as a consultant now, and I sail at different venues around the world, so relaxing and staying fit are necessary,' Alexander maintains.

When does the Queenslander see himself giving 505 sailing away? 'I don’t. I’ll do it till I fall off my perch. I’ll just take each year as it comes,' he says.

www.505sapworldchampionship2011.com/




by Di Pearson

  

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

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=81862

6:27 AM Wed 30 Mar 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 505 World Championship

Related News Stories:

02 Apr 2011  SAP 505 World Championship happy ending - Video
01 Apr 2011  SAP 505 World Championship 2011 win to defending World Champions
01 Apr 2011  SAP 505 World Championship race 7 postponed
01 Apr 2011  SAP 505 World Championship races 5 and 6 video
31 Mar 2011  SAP 505 World Championship 2011 toughest day yet
31 Mar 2011  SAP 505 World Championship Race 5 abandoned and fleet on standby
31 Mar 2011  SAP 505 World Championship video
30 Mar 2011  SAP 505 World Championship - US and Aussies close on leaders
29 Mar 2011  SAP 505 World Championship and another 'blow out'
28 Mar 2011  SAP 505 Worlds 2011 - racing abandoned for another day
MORE STORIES ...

News - USA and the World





















Audi Melges 20 U.S. Nationals - Oleander takes early lead by International Audi Melges 20 Class Association,






2014 Detroit Cup - Sam Gilmour leads by Dobbs Davis, Detroit, Michigan








Audi Hamilton Island Race Week: Riding the AC45 - VIDEO by Crosbie Lorimer, Hamilton Island










America's Cup: Five Challengers sign-on for 35th Match by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.com/nz,


Volvo Ocean Race CEO Knut Frostad talks Time and Money (Part II) *Feature by Rob Kothe and the Sail-World team,


















AWT Quatro Desert Showdown at Punta San Carlos by American Windsurfing Tour,


SAP 505 World Championship - Holt and Woelfel on top
2014 IFDS Disabled Sailing World Championship - Day 2
Audi Hamilton Island Race Week; MC38s Lindeman Island Race VIDEO
2014 Audi Melges 20 U.S. National Championship - Ready to rock
IFDS Worlds - Wind delays, but racing continues in Halifax
IFDS World Championships - Day 2 images by Jude Robertson
MS Cup - Three days until the start
America's Cup: Rod Davis - Time for a change after ten years with team *Feature
ISAF seeking hosting bids for Nations Cup
Laser 4.7 Youth Worlds - Luvisetto and Alexadr Boite victorious +Video
IFDS World Championships - Action shots by Tim Wilkes
Maxi yacht rendezvous this September in Sardinia
World Yacht Racing Forum 2014: 'Growing the business of Yacht Racing'
Clipper Race: 2015-16 edition of world's longest ocean race 70% full
Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland - Swish smash 5th World Record
Leaderboards take shape at the Nanjing Youth Olympic Games 2014
IFDS Worlds - Hot competition on first day of racing
Challenging Conditions - CORK OCR
IFDS World Championship - Day 1 for the US Sailing Team
2014 Melges 20 World Championship - Countdown begins
2014 Nanjing Youth Olympic Games - Day 3   
America's Cup: Team NZ wish Davis well with new team *Feature   
Fisher's View: Sailing perfection at Hamilton Island- Day 3   
Roble and Wilson still number one match racers in the U.S.   
2014 Formula Kite World Championship Day 1   
IFDS World Championship - Day 1 images by Jude Robertson   
Volvo Ocean Race: Forget the f-word - Team SCA profiled   
52 Super Series - Fleet grows, 2015 dates revealed   
420 and 470 Junior Europeans - Teams from 9 nations on the podium   
IFDS Worlds - Former president presented with ISAF awards medal   
Nanjing Youth Olympic Games - Improvements aplenty in Byte CII fleets   
America's Cup: New Zealand loses top coach to Artemis Racing   
Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15 CEO Knut Frostad talks (Part I) *Feature   
Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race Day 9 - Swish on record pace   
2014 CORK Olympic Classes Regatta - Day 3   
2014 Nanjing Youth Olympic Games - Day 2   
2014 IFDS World Championship: Opening Ceremony images   
Opera House Cup - Images by Ingrid Abery   
Teams descend upon Cowes for inaugural J/111 World Championships   
Hamilton Island Race Week: Everywhere there's smiley people   


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







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

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.
XLXL WAS US
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT