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Australian Midwinter Championships attract international sailors

by Miles Ruge on 10 Jul 2014
Frenchmen Mickael Farina racing upwind in strong westerly wind today. Andrew Gough
Three international sailors make up the field at the Australian Midwinter Youth Championships 2014, held at Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron (Manly).

New Zealand sailor Lachlan Grimwade sits in fifth place in the Laser 4.7 series after day three of sailing on Waterloo Bay. From Auckland, the sailor travelled to the Australian Midwinter Championships to compete because of a lack of Laser 4.7 competition in New Zealand.

'It gives me a really good shot to see how Australia’s going as one of the top 4.7 nations around the world and it gives me some good competition racing which I otherwise wouldn’t get,' Grimwade said.

The sailor will compete at the World Championships later this year and will either pursue competitive sailing in the Radial or doublehanded classes with age. With a slew of good results so far, the sailor is hopefully to make the podium when racing concludes tomorrow.

'I’m just going to try my hardest, push hard, and go for my best,' he said.

Frenchmen Mickael Farina is another sailor racing under international sails. From New Caledonia, Farina is in Australia for six months studying English. While the sailor has enjoyed the racing so far at the Australian Midwinter Youth Championships, he found conditions difficult on day three.

'Here’s it more difficult than my home because there’s so much wind and swell,' Farina commented on the conditions.
He currently sits in eleventh place in the Laser Radial series after day three.

A third international sailor from Macedonia rounds out the international presence at the regatta. Nikola Churkoski currently sits 21st in the Radial series.

Josh Belsham—Club Sailing and Regatta Manager at Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron—believes the international presence at the regatta is representative of the high regard that the event is held in by both domestic and international sailors.

'We’re very happy with the fact we’ve got support from overseas, and we’ll definitely be advertising to international countries next year in an effort to continue to grow the regatta,' Belsham said.

Those interested in competing in the 2015 regatta can contact Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron via their website.

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