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

 

Sail-World.com : The return to Etchells and the podium

The return to Etchells and the podium

'The victorious Noel, Bill Merrington and Ben Morrison-Jack with their Victorian Etchells State Championship trophy. - Etchells World Championships'    Nick McGuigan

Noel 'Nitro' Drennan sure has sailed Etchells before and even placed in the top ten at a Worlds. However, he and crew of Will McCarthy and Anthony (Nocka) Nossiter went one better at the recent San Diego Etchells World Championships and made it to the podium with a terrific second place.

Amongst it all there's been a lot of big boat work, but the lure of the Etchells proved strong once more and he found himself preparing for another World Championships. 'Our regatta plan for San Diego came together whilst Will, Anthony and I were doing the lead up to and then competing in the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race, aboard the Elliott penned supermaxi, Loyal (nee Maximus). We had plenty of time to talk Etchells and how to build up to our goal of being on the start line of heat one, fully ready to race', said Nitro.

Early in January 2011, it was time to compete in the Rex Gorrell Prestige Australian National Etchells Championship. The result was an excellent fifth place, 'Which I was pretty happy with, seeing as it had been quite a while since I raced in the Etchells.' In fact it had been almost two years, March 2009 to be exact, since he'd been in the boat. That was the Worlds hosted out of Brighton and they'd walked away with a sixth place.

Noel Drennan’s World Championship campaign began at the 2011 NSW State Championships in Newcastle. - Etchells World Championships -  John Curnow ©  

At any rate, a couple of weeks after the Nationals, Nitro, Will and Steve 'Mothy' Jarvin appeared in Newcastle for the Thrifty NSW State Championships. Nocka was not available as he was in China, but the crew still managed to get a seventh place. Like the Nationals and the Victorian State Championships, which were to follow, any of at least 10 crews could easily have been be the victor.

The Victorian State Championships were on over the long weekend of March 12 to 14, inclusive. In Michael Hiatt's second Etchells, Bad Doll, Noel with crew this time of Bill Merrington and Ben Morrison-Jack, got up for the win - by one point in the end. 'It was a pretty difficult regatta; the whole weekend has had lots of shifts and velocity changes. It definitely kept us on our toes. The two nautical mile works were more like what we're used to years ago and I still like the longer courses and the racing it provides. Absolutely a great leveller for any discrepancies at the other end', Noel said quayside immediately after that win. Looking back it all, Nitro commented that 'The regatta was light and shifty and a really good lead up for San Diego, as we had pretty good boat speed.'

Interestingly, Will McCarthy sailed with John Bertrand in that regatta and their super fast finishing in the last few races saw them land in second place. 'Nocka was still in China and it did not hurt Will sailing with JB, either', said Nitro.

With the three practice regattas under his belt and some pretty commendable results to go with it, Nitro reflected on the fact that they had some 'Pretty mediocre starting, on my behalf. Certainly, this was definitely an area for improvement, which we did more through discussion, rather than multiple practice starts. A general simplifying of the starting procedure and the aim of just getting a good start anywhere, as opposed to owning than box seat was adopted.'

Moving on to June and the San Diego Worlds, Noel secured a good local boat to use. 'This eliminated the need to ship my own boat and made it low stress to get out on the race course. We choose not to do the pre-Worlds, as it just added more time and money. Ultimately, we wanted to be fresh for the first race and knew we had to use our time beforehand, eight days in total, really well. It seemed a lot prior to arrival, but once there we did run out of time a bit. The upshot of it all is that it allowed us to be completely focused on speed, rather than racing.'

Michael 'Living Doll' Hiatt and Rob 'Shogun' Hanna, who are both from Melbourne, had been organised for Noel and crew to tune with in the week leading up to the Worlds. 'We felt comfortable at the end of the week with our upwind speed. Checking in with several of the better, local boats allowed us to see that it was pretty apparent that we were fast in the predominantly 8-11 knot breezes.'

Noel had been out on the very same course in the 2000 Etchells Worlds, when he was crewing for Dennis Conner. 'I thought I knew the local conditions, however it definitely seems to have changed slightly, to a more even course, rather than the right side bias that I remember.'

Armed with the knowledge that they had good upwind speed, they set about devising a strategy to make effective use of it. In the main, they started away from the bunch and focussed on being at speed with a reasonable start as their priority. 'Whilst racing up the first beat, primarily being in the middle or just towards the slightly favoured side (left or right), we seemed to spend a lot of time sailing against Bill Hardesty. He seemed to have a similar plan to us', Noel discovered. 'Overall, it probably would have been better for us to work a side of the course a bit harder, but it was very difficult to fully commit to one side. We were a little conservative, especially in the second half of the first beat.'

Like all the good crews, effective communication played a crucial role. 'We had no clear definition of our roles on the boat, so there was plenty of overlap with everything, which is good I think. If you had to place it however, overall, our race strategy was worked out between Nocka and I, whilst Will made sure we were travelling forward quickly enough. When Will chipped in on strategy, Nocka and I knew it was for a good reason and that we'd better factor in his thoughts.'

'Our drop race was our first race (21), which was not ideal, but we knew it was a long regatta and things have their way of evening out, especially in an 83 boat fleet, with large wind shifts. We had pretty strong races from Heat Two onwards and were never out of the top 10. Unfortunately and unlike Bill Hardesty, we could not convert it into heat wins, despite being in similar positions at the first mark', said Nitro of their results.

The last race was the trickiest race of the regatta with larger than previous wind shifts and big pressure variations across the course. 'Even though we had a four-point positive gap to Vince to retain our second place, overall, it was still a really tough race. We managed to stay ahead of Vince at every mark, albeit just and then put several boats between us at the finish, so it looked easy but it was definitely stressful!'

Interestingly, the first eight boats at San Diego and the last five winners of the World Championship used North Sails. Now, concurrently, and in very different conditions in the Southern Hemisphere, North's were taking the top three spots at Mooloolaba.

Noel works with Ross Lloyd at the Melbourne loft and said this of the impressive results, 'North's current win ratio has a lot to do with the sail makers from the various North lofts around the globe, all of whom are long-term Etchells sailors. In addition to us, in Australia we also have Michael Coxon, Mark Bradford and Vaughan Prentice. In the USA, there are Vince Brun, Chris Snow, Jeff Madrigali, Chad Hough and Ched Proctor, with Simon Fry in the UK. Whilst it may look a lot of people on paper, I think it's a good thing, as you get a broad view on how an Etchells sail should look and perform.'

Getting back to reflect on his personal achievements at the San Diego regatta, Noel said, 'We were happy with our second overall, well maybe not completely… Anyway, before we left Australia we all knew that it would be tough racing the local San Diego fleet, who would be very used to their local conditions. It would have been easy to pack it in and say it was a tough regatta, so we'll take the podium finish. The upcoming 2012 Worlds in Sydney will be a great regatta and hopefully, we'll end up with a strong overseas entry, just like San Diego did. They had 11 nations competing! I am looking forward to Sydney, as I think the Manly Circle will provide a variety of wind and sea conditions, rather than just the 8-11 knots we saw most days in San Diego.

Noel 'Nitro' Drennan making his acceptance speech. - Etchells World Championships -  Nick McGuigan   Click Here to view large photo

International Etchells Class Association website




by John Curnow

  

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

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=86405

6:14 PM Tue 26 Jul 2011 GMT






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

Click for further information on
Australian Etchells Racing News

Related News Stories:

04 Mar 2013  Images from NSW Etchells Championships
27 Jul 2011  Michael Hiatt – Top Ten hit for the 'Commodore'
12 Jun 2011  Etchells World Championship - Noel 'Nitro' Drennan second
08 Jun 2011  Etchells World Championship day 2 + Video
07 Jun 2011  Etchells World Championship day one - Hiatt top placed foreign boat
12 May 2011  Etchells Experience for RSYS youth sailors
06 Apr 2011  Kane Sinclair on Cherubs, 505s, Etchells and Sydney 2012
17 Mar 2011  Race Committee – Walk a Day in their shoes
14 Mar 2011  Etchells Victorian Championships 2011 -Close contest and great result
13 Mar 2011  Port Phillip provides the usual excitement for Etchells
MORE STORIES ...

News - USA and the World

If you missed this week's edition of Adventures of a Sailor Girl, then hear the replay below. Adventures of a Sailor Girl #31 - Pathways and passion! ... [more]  

The new application from PredictWind for Mac and PC is revolutionary for accessing weather data when offshore. Accessing GRIB files, Weather Routing, GMDSS forecasts and Satellite Imagery is now a simple task with the unique and user friendly interface. ... [more]  

America's Cup: Sweden to host World Series regatta in 2015 by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.com/nz
Artemis Racing and the City of Gothenburg are set to host an America’s Cup World Series event during the last weekend of August (28th - 30th) 2015. Racing will take place either on the Gota River close to the city centre, or at Långedrag, and the race village will be located in Frihamnen. ... [more]  

2014 Chicago Match Cup - At the end of Chicago Match Race Center's sixth season, the numbers show how well CMRC reached both into and beyond the Great Lakes sailing community. CMRC hosted a total of 12 graded events from May to October. Of these, the five Grade Three regattas were the best attended featuring 23 skippers from nine countries. ... [more]  

Leading sailing marine electronics manufacturer B&G has been appointed an Official Race Supplier for the Volvo Ocean Race 2014/15. B&G will also be providing full electronic navigation systems, tactical software and race support to the organisers of the 2014 Volvo Ocean Race, which began on the October 4th in Alicante, Spain. ... [more]  

2014 RORC Transatlantic Race - The inaugural RORC Transatlantic Race, in association with the International Maxi Association (IMA), starts on Saturday 29th November from Lanzarote bound for Grenada, 2,995 nautical miles across the Atlantic Ocean. All of the competing yachts are now safely moored in Puerto Calero Marina and last night an informal welcome drinks reception was well received with crew ... [more]  

2014 Extreme Sailing Series - Act 8 - Tom Slingsby, Australian Olympic Laser Gold medalist, and member of Oracle Team USA, has signed up as skipper of Oman Air, one of two Oman Sail Extreme Sailing teams, for the final act of the Extreme Sailing Series in Sydney, Australia (11-14 December). ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race: Big spread in fleet as Abu Dhabi leads *Feature by Richard Gladwell, Sail-World.com/nz
Abu Dhabi (Ian Walker) continues to lead the Volvo Ocean Race. She is the most westerly of the fleet as they approach the coast of Madagascar. In a video, Abu Dhabi skipper Ian Walker explains the weather hazards of the second leg of the Volvo Ocean Race. ... [more]  

ISAF Sailing World Cup Final 2014: With a packed crowd of local dignitaries, VIPS and competitors, the ISAF President welcomed the world’s finest Olympic sailors and kiteboarders who will be battling it out on Abu Dhabi's waters. 'It’s a great honour for me to be here today because we have a very important regatta which will be the future of our sport,' explained Croce. ... [more]  

Sir Keith Mills GBE announced that America’s Cup Racing is to return to British waters when the America’s Cup World Series (ACWS) takes place in Portsmouth 23-26 July 2015 and 21–24 July 2016. The second European location is expected to be Cagliari in Italy, where Luna Rossa Challenge have their base. ... [more]  

Chairman and founder of the Clipper Race, Sir Robin Knox Johnston said: 'The Clipper Race is very pleased to welcome Hyde Sails back on board as Official Sails Supplier for our fourth consecutive race partnership. Hyde Sails evolved with us when we introduced the new Clipper 70 fleet in the last race and we were very pleased with how well the new sail wardrobes stood up to almost a year' ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race: Welcome to Brian's Gime *Feature by Brian Carlin, Team Vestas Wind, At sea
The irrepressible Brian Carlin, the On Board Reporter for Team Vestas Wind is on fitness program on board, under the watchful eye of race veteran Tony Rae. Today as my personal trainer, friend and fellow shipmate we accomplished a goal, 70 press-ups. I’m sure to some it maybe easy but I ask anyone of you right now sitting at your desk, hit the floor and give me 70 on the spot. ... [more]  

Two of the crew from Overall race leader, Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing look at leg 2 and the race overall. Here are the latest blogs (unedited) from On Board Reporter Matt Knighton, along with an onboard video with Simon Fisher (navigator) musing on what is required to win the race, and skipper Ian Walker on how Leg 2 has panned out for them so far. ... [more]  

Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2014 - A new deal for corinthians by Bruce Montgomery – Rolex Sydney Hobart media
Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2014: Since 1945 starters in the Sydney-Hobart have raced the equivalent of two circumnavigations of the world, almost 45,000 nautical miles. They have been drawn from the seven seas; they come from all corners of the world; they board boats that range from 100-feet supermaxis to boats littler larger than the Owl and the Pussycat’s. ... [more]  

2016 Hansa Class Combined World and International Championships - The International Hansa Class Association has announced that the 2016 Hansa Class Combined World and International Championships will be held in the Netherlands. ... [more]  

Most of the nearly 300 sailors on 216 boats in 21 classes in Alamitos Bay Yacht Club's 67th Turkey Day Regatta came to enjoy sunny sailing in mild conditions, which the weekend delivered beautifully. By tradition, the winners received turkeys, not trophies, but for a few others it was another important stopover en route to Rio de Janeiro and the 2016 Olympics. They hope. ... [more]  

Everyone was expecting a battle between Besson and Cammas. In the end, Morgan Lagravière took the Champion’s title of the seventh edition of the St-Barth Cata Cup with a near-perfect journey. The Marché U day ended with a friendly race to Public. ... [more]  

Robert Scheidt talks to us just a few days before the Nassau start of the Star Sailors League Final. How do you feel inside? I feel very calm. Myself and Bruno have tons of experience with the Star. We’ve been competing together for 10 years now. ... [more]  

The US Optimist Dinghy Association (USODA) has selected Pensacola Yacht Club (PYC) to host their 2015 National Championships. This championship will be a week-long sailing spectacular on Pensacola Bay sailed by International Optimist Dinghy sailors from eight to 15 years old. ... [more]  

More than forty five years since his historical circumnavigation, legendary Clipper Race founder Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, 75, continues to prove inspirational to adventurers around the globe. Sir Robin, the oldest entrant in the 3,542 mile Route du Rhum, finished third in his Rhum class into La Pointe À Pitre, Guadeloupe. ... [more]  

With Olympic heroes and World Champions in their numbers at the ISAF Sailing World Cup Final in Abu Dhabi, UAE, local children are being inspired to take up the sport. By utilising the star names on show at the ISAF Sailing World Cup Final, the Abu Dhabi Sailing and Yacht Club, hosts of the regatta, are using the event to promote the sport in the Emirati capital. ... [more]  

The last day of the Airwaves Noumea PWA Dream Cup saw a grandstand finale to the 2014 PWA World Tour as the morning showers finally cleared to allow the wind to fill in and the respective titles to be decided. With the racing beginning later than scheduled the title race came down to one final race, which would ultimately decide the title. ... [more]  

Sometime during last night’s moonless gloom in the Volvo Ocean Race, the masthead lights of Dongfeng and Mapfre appeared to the west, maybe right where they would have been if we had jibed with the fleet the previous day. To say that was a relief is an understatement-that we are back in touch, back in the fray near the front, it keeps everyone motivated and pushing a little bit harder. ... [more]  

Olympic medal-winning skipper Ian Walker, from Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing (ADOR) – the emirate’s Volvo Ocean Race contesting squad – recently took time out of his hectic schedule while he was in Cape Town, as the team prepared for Leg 2 of the race to catch-up with students at The British School Al Khubairat via a video call. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15 – Corinna Halloran reports on day five of leg 2 for Team SCA. Team SCA has a super fan. She’s seven and, at home, she has posters of Team SCA on her wall. As a member of the team, and as a woman in 2014, this is extremely cool. ... [more]  

The Sailing Instructions for the 2014 ISAF Sailing World Cup Final that will be held in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates from 26-30 November have been published. All ten Olympic events and an Open Kiteboarding event will be contested in the Emirati capital off of the stunning Corniche. ... [more]  

Italy's Giulia Conti and Francesca Clapcich have been one of the leading teams in the Women's Skiff, the 49erFX, and head to Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates ready for the ISAF Sailing World Cup Final. ... [more]  

St Barth Cata Cup day 3 by Dominique Ladouceur
Day three’s race was a lot more difficult than yesterday’s at the St-Barth Cata Cup due to b winds. After pushing back the morning race to 2p.m. due to 30 knots winds at the tip of Colombier, the race committee decided to stick to only one race in the afternoon. ... [more]  

Team Alivimedica skipper Charlie Enright and navigator Will Oxley sat with Andy Rice to assess Leg 2 before the start in Cape Town. Here is the second part of the Leg Two analysis. ... [more]  

Position report for the Volvo Ocean Race boats as of 24th November 0700 UTC. It's been a fairly quiet night out there - and the biggest change is that the boats are beginning to close up, and become more compact. ADOR, who gybed north first, around six hours before the rest of the fleet on Saturday night, have moved south a little, whereas the rest of the boats have remained in the same line. ... [more]  

The 10 competing teams at the RC44 Oman Cup enjoyed a great sailing day on the Gulf of Oman for the penultimate day of the 2014 Championship Tour. Terry Hutchinson continued to guide Vladimir Prosihkin’s Team Nika the right way around the course, extending their lead in the overall standings, adding another race win to their scoreline, Team Aqua stay second with Charisma hanging onto third. ... [more]  

Position report for the Volvo Ocean Race fleet as of 23 November, 1900 UTC. Four days into the Leg 2, and the fleet is finally making progress towards Abu Dhabi. The seven boats are now south of Madagascar, and they’ve been heading north since last night. ... [more]  

Position report for the Volvo Ocean Race boats as of 0748 UTC, November 23rd. So what happened overnight? Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing were the first to head north and then progressively the other boats in the fleet decided to follow their lead. The fleet is really close together. ... [more]  

Gladwell's Line: The America's Cup is now Bermuda's Cup? *Feature
VX ONE Winter Series - Norris and Family earn first weekend victory
RC44 Oman Cup - Nika wins and Team Aqua clinch their fourth RC44 title
18ft Skiffs: Club Championship, Cordukes Clubhouse Trophy - Race three
Volvo Ocean Race: On board with Abu Dhabi - torn sail and where to go? *Feature
2014 Argo Group Gold Cup - Bermuda shines
2014 Turkey Day Regatta – Day 1
Airwaves Noumea PWA Dream Cup - Delphine Cousin officially world champ
Volvo Ocean Race: A man's got to do what a man's got to do
RC44 Championship Tour - A great sailing day on the Gulf of Oman
Sail-World Team holds first Continental Conference at METS
ISAF Sailing World Cup Final - Open Formula Kiteboarding event preview
Volvo Ocean Race: Fleet heads into the Southern Ocean + Videos *Feature
ISAF Sailing World Cup Final - Set to be an 'experience of a lifetime'
America's Cup: Source named in Bermuda venue leak *Feature
2014 RC44 Oman Cup - Challenging day + Videos
Volvo Ocean Race: A bumpy, hard driving ride in the Southern Ocean
EPA punts on renewable fuel standard
Yates Cup: US supermaxi Rio100 wins first offshore race + Video *Feature
Airwaves Noumea PWA Dream Cup - Men’s title race takes a twist
RC44 Oman Cup - Consistency hard to come by   
Volvo Ocean Race - Discomfort takes over for Team Alvimedica   
Volvo Ocean Race - Rapid change for Team SCA   
Viper 640 event at Lake Garda - 22-26th June 2015   
British Cycling grows by over 500%, can sailing do the same?   
GC32 Racing Tour 2015 - Dates and venues   
Class 40-footers to be featured in 2015 Annapolis-to-Newport Race   
Spectacular performance by Bakewell-White maxi early in first race *Feature   
Airwaves Noumea PWA Dream Cup - Big strides for Cousin and Moussilmani   
America's Cup: Team New Zealand responds to Venue rumours *Feature   
ORC reveals rule improvements for 2015   
Volvo Ocean Race - Hammer down for Team Alvimedica   
Volvo Ocean Race - Team SCA heads for unknown territory   
ISAF Sailing World Cup Final set to be 'an experience of a lifetime'   
RC44 Oman Cup - Team Nika gets a taste for the podium + Video   
St Barth Cata Cup 2014 - Game on!   
Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2014 - Wild Oats XI reveals new livery   
Rolex Sydney Hobart 2014 - Wild Oats XI and Audi ready: photos   
Volvo Ocean Race: Meek's tips pay dividend in Leg 2 squalls and calms *Feature   
Volvo Ocean Race - Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing in search of hometown glory   


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