Botany Bay Race, held on 8th October, is one of the ten races in the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s Ocean Pointscore Series (OPS) which commenced on 10 September 2011.
Defending OPS champion, Julian Farren-Price, is proving difficult to beat once again, winning today’s Botany Bay Race overall making it two in a row after taking out the Port Hacking Race two weeks ago.
The Sydney jeweller sailed his Cookson 12 to an IRC overall win over Ray Entwistle’s J111 Jake and Noel Cornish’s St Jude in the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia series; and these are the three yachts that are topping the board for the series overall with three races put to bed. He also won the PHS class today, from St Jude and Solahart-Rum Jungle, Scott Russell’s Swarbrick 40.
Noel Cornish outgunned the fleet to take OPS line honours, finishing at 3.09.30pm today, in a six knot breeze that was just east of south, beating the newly launched Occasional Coarse Language 2 to the punch.
However, Cornish, who owns and skippers the consistently good Sydney 47, St. Jude, had only one thing on his mind: 'What do we have to do to out-sail Julian Farren-Price (About Time). He consistently sails that boat well and we can’t seem to get away from him,' the CYCA member said of his main rival for the CYCA’s Ocean Pointscore Series (OPS).
Cornish, who finished the OPS third overall last season, does have something to be pleased about though; 'My crew is really keen and are working hard towards our Rolex Sydney Hobart campaign. The CYCA’s Cabbage Tree Island Race will be our last major race before Hobart.'
The 19 entries in the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s Botany Bay Race lined up obediently on the start line just before their 10.00am start, but spent the next 50 minutes bobbing around like ducks on a millpond, leading Principal Race Officer, Denis Thompson, to report this morning 'It’s not looking good – we’ve got a glass out on Sydney Harbour.
'It’s going to be a long, long day,' he predicted, but shortly after he said it, a light southerly breeze filtered into the Harbour. Winds picked up and stayed pleasantly moderate in what has proved unpredictable weather in the last 16 odd hours.
Despite leaving the start line in a lazy 5 knot southerly, the yachts made a pretty sight when grey skies were suddenly painted blue and the fleet hoisted kites as they headed out of Sydney Harbour to Botany Bay.
Conditions improved, the fleet mostly sailed in a nice 8-13 knot southerly breeze which at times went into the south-east and south-west. 'Surprisingly, after waiting around to start, we had good breeze all the way down,' said Cornish who admitted he could not shake Farren-Price. 'Julian was close behind us the entire race – he’s a brilliant sailor.'
Leading the fleet out of the Harbour though, was Warwick Sherman’s brand new GTS43, Occasional Coarse Language 2, contesting her second ocean race after shearing her rudder in the first race of the series.
Reputedly quick in a light breeze, she finished under two minutes behind St. Jude, with some ‘gun’ crew inclusive of North Sails Richie Allanson, a great hand to have if you want your boat to sail fast.
Just before 5.00pm, Sean Barrett’s little Jutson 31, Outlandish, crossed the finish line to bring the race to a close.
The next race in the Ocean Point Score is a Port Hacking Race on November 19. CYCA website