by David Staley
The Zhik 2013-14 Australian Championships have kicked off at Royal Brighton Yacht Club with three races for the 29er fleet.
29er start line on day one of the Australian Championships at Brighton - Zhik Australian Championships 2013-14
A southerly breeze moved right and left throughout the afternoon and varied 15 to 20 knots. Along with the choppy sea state, it provided some challenging racing conditions and several boats retired with gear damage.
29er course Race Officer Tony Outteridge and his team managed to complete three races for the first day. The aim is to complete a 16 race program over the 5 scheduled days.
Wyatt & Siganto (QLD) approaching the leeward mark in race two - Zhik Australian Championships 2013-14
Charlie Wyatt and Tom Siganto from Southport Yacht Club on Queensland’s Gold Coast have a three point lead after today, with an impressive 2-1-1 scoreline. Second and third overall and equal on points are NSW teams Kurt Hansen and Harry Morton from Belmont on Lake Macquarie and Jim Colley and Shaun O’Connor from RPAYC Pittwater. Hansen and Morton won the first race of the day.
James McLennan and Tom Trotman are the highest placed locals. They are fourth, just ahead of two New Zealand teams. Seven international crews are competing in the 29er fleet – from Hong Kong, New Zealand and Norway.
The 49er and FX classes have their first races scheduled tomorrow. The regatta continues until Friday January 3.
Reach to the finish line - Zhik Australian Championships 2013-14