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RS Aero Victorian State Championships at Black Rock Yacht Club

by Richard Furneaux 23 Apr 2018 02:53 PDT 21-22 April 2018
RS Aero Victorian State Championships 2018 © Chris Visick

The RS Aero Victorian State Championships were held over the weekend of the 21st/22nd April at Black Rock Yacht Club as part of their annual Skiff Regatta.

The event attracted twenty one entries that reflect the diversity of sailors that are sailing the three different rigs available in the Aero Class. The age range among the men and women competing was from 15 years of age to our oldest competitor at 74, who incidentally had just 'downgraded' to an Aero from his foiling Moth. Five boats made the trip down to Melbourne from Sydney and also in the fleet was an international sailor, hailing from the Isle of Man.

On both days sailors were welcomed to a misty morning until the sun eventually burnt off the cloud cover, generating a light northerly breeze, in time for the first warning signal. On both days the winds tracked steadily from the north to the south, increasing in pressure as it rotated. This meant a lot of work for the Race Management teams but the courses were altered between races seamlessly.

Over the six race series the lead was hotly contested by numerous sailors. Ron Fergusson, Michael O'Brien, Steven Case, Chris Brain, Warwick Foy, Greg Kelly and Rhett Gowans all had their moments at the head of the fleet. However, it was the sailors that managed to stay in pressure on the lifting tack that moved through the fleet for better results overall.

The consensus from the sailors after the event was that it was great to be part of such an inclusive and hotly contested fleet and they all learnt a lot over the course of the regatta.

Greg Kelly (Aero 7), from the Isle of Man took the overall honours, sailing conservatively, while using his knowledge of the class to the best of his ability. In second place overall and Victorian State Champion was Rhett Gowans from Mornington YC/Royal Brighton YC (Aero 7) and rounding out the podium was Chris Brain (Aero 7) in third place overall from Sugarloaf SC, pipping Steven Case Royal Geelong YC on count back. Warwick Foy was the overall Aero 9 winner and Ryu Watanabe from RGYC was the Aero 5 winner.

Competitors are now looking forward to the RS Aero Nationals that will be held at Port Stephens, NSW in early December so they can become familiar with the waters where the RS Aero Worlds will be held in late 2019.

Overall Results:

PosRigSail NoBoat NameHelmR1R2R3R4R5R6Pts
1Rsaero720Greg KellyGreg Kelly111[2]115
2Rsaero71679MorteinRhett Gowans3[5]254216
3Rsaero71393JackChris Brain[12]2616419
4Rsaero7107777Steven Case23347[8]19
5Rsaero72500Feats of StrengthMichael OBrien445[12]2520
6Rsaero9188The Business PartnerWarwick Foy[11]6463322
7Rsaero77Glide Free APedro Stephinson677710[12]37
8Rsaero71189Mr Magoo (Hull 1191)Ron Fergusson5109[13]12642
9Rsaero91188Camp FreddySimon Reffold9[14]10115742
10Rsaero71284B2Nick Collis-George7811[16]81044
11Rsaero91194Tijuana TaxiAndrew Giles[14]9133131149
12Rsaero92047ASAPDavid Innes8[15]121011950
13Rsaero72049RetrenchedDavid Andrew131388.59[22U]51.5
14Rsaero71RockyBrian Case1011.5148.5[22F]22C66
15Rsaero51388TBARyu Watanabe1511.5[16]15161370.5
16Rsaero71074None the WiserBrendan Chaplin[18]161514141473
17Rsaero52045Little WhippetVictoria Land17[18]1717151581
18Rsaero52492appleDavid Adams1619181817[22C]88
19Rsaero51683No NameKendra Gallety[19]171919181689
20Rsaero71704NA1John Fordyce[22F]22C22C22C22C22C110
20Rsaero71697JenJohn Sammons[22C]22C22C22C22C22C110

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