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Disparate deviations

by John Curnow, Editor, Sail-World AUS 27 Oct 2019 15:00 PDT
Soon it will be time for the Moths to congregate - this time it is in Perth. © John Curnow

Previously I had used 'Miscellaneous Ramblings', so that put paid to that notion. This here collective is to be officially known by this new title. And what a congregation we have for you today... Strap in. We're off on a set of short hops, just like a 22-seat turbo prop through a magical tropical island chain.


From December 9-19, 2019, the Mounts Bay Sailing Club in Perth is going to hold the Moth Worlds. That'll be big. Many think an Australian will win for sure. No pressure. Two of those that would be eying it off would be Olympic Gold Medallist and reigning Laser World Champion, Tom Burton. Another Belmont local (Northern end of Lake Macquarie NSW) is Kyle Langford, and he too has just put a World Championship (unofficial, but genuine none the less) under his belt whilst aboard Team AUS in the SailGP.


We have had a fair bit to ask of the 'new' SuperFoilers, and thus far, we have not been feeling the love. At all... Talk about deaf ears! Man. Only trying to help, you know. Don't let them go the way of that famous Flying Boat - the Spruce Goose. At any rate, on Friday it looks like two vessels appeared on Lake Macquarie, which is about two hours North of Sydney, depending on traffic.

Steve Thomas and the gang ensconced themselves at Belmont, ready to trial the new foils and elevators out. Given they also have new Doyle Sails, and the local agent is none other than Chris Nicholson, it is a fair bet to say that the skiff and offshore legend will be having a go as well. So any time you lot are ready to fill us in Steve, we'll be happy to have a chat. Capiche?

Beneteau Cup

As usual, the Beneteau Cup on Sydney Harbour attracted its fair share of names, and they were not just the ones from the host, Flagstaff Marine, either. Micah Lane, Michael Coxon and Shane Crookshanks all duked it out for their clients, with the latter coming out on top. Could not help noting that it looked like one Sam Newton, also from Team AUS in the SailGP, was out on Antipodes, making sure the Spinnaker Division was well and truly all about focus, and a lot less about lunch.

Now North Sails had an armada of representatives there, with Billy Sykes sailing on Bombolo, Andrew Parkes on Bliss, and Lee Randall on Holy Cow. Earlier on that morning, Billy had delivered just some of the 100 new and recently serviced sails that the Mona Vale loft of North Sails had to place in the hands of their customers, that week alone.


Paul Schulz has joined the avant-garde ocean performance brand, Vaikobi. Schulz is now the Global Sales Manager for the Australian technical gear brand founded by Pat and Adrienne Langley. Commencing operations to deliver outstanding paddling and SUP wear, it was not long before Vaikobi Ocean Performance was a true favourite of firstly Off The Beach sailors, and then their keelboat cousins.

As Schulz is known the country over from the amount of time he has spent attending regattas on behalf of Gill, having him join Vaikobi is a significant Coup de grâce. Schulz commented, "It's great to be on board with Pat and the team at Vaikobi. Having known Pat for many years through the marine industry, I've watched the rapid growth of Vaikobi over the last 6 years with distinct interest."

"Pat, Adrienne, and the whole team have done an awesome job in building a fantastic range of technical apparel, and they have such a solid following in the paddling market, with many world champions wearing their gear."

"Timing is everything. The opportunity for me to get on board with a home grown brand was just to hard to resist, as Vaikobi will just keep on expanding both here and overseas."

Langley said of Schulz, "He's a former Australian Champion in the 18-footers, and he tells me he was runner up twice in the J.J. Giltinan's. He has also completed the 5500nm Melbourne to Osaka double-handed race, as well as competing in multiple Sydney to Hobart races. You know the type, and in addition to all of that, he's an all round nice guy, so he fits in well here."

Semi Rigid Wing (SRW) and Brett Perry

It was my esteemed pleasure to spend time with one of our living legends, the magnificent Dick Sargeant. Amongst other things, we reviewed K8 in the flesh. We spoke at length with the very enthusiastic Brett Perry, and it is something else to see the workings of the double luff mainsail and rotating mast. Dick was certainly inspired, and I reckon we could well see him out for a spin on K8 soon enough.

So whilst Perry, resplendent in Vaikobi gear no less, explained to us, and then a gathering later that night at the Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron, all the goings on of one of the most powerful and yet intriguingly simple designs I have yet seen, I talked with Perry about the little 8m gem that weighs less than a metric tonne, and has something like 285kg on the bulb at the end of her 2.1m fixed fin.

With massive form stability and a different tuning guide to the one we all grew up with, I cannot wait to have my go, and see if I can do sevens uphill, and 17 from 14 knots of breeze back down. I have been promised a go, but you can have one any time you like - just call, or make contact via the Advanced Wing Systems website.

Dynamic Duo

Voting for Mat Belcher and Will Ryan as World Sailors of the Year closes today, so if you have not voted already, then please do so. They have really put in during the 12 month period of calculation, so it would be good to get them over the line for this one, seeing as they have got themselves over the line for so many regattas this last year!

Right oh - here today there are some gems for you to review like the 18-footers, J/24s, Transat Jacques Vabre, Joyon and Idec Sport race on, new Pres and Vice for Australian Sailing, Middle Sea Race, Team USA Nacra 17 crew go for a joyride, Etchells prepare for battle in Brighton, James Sainsbury's home build Moth looking a lot like the Batmobile, the Clipper, and certainly there is much, much more.

Remember, if your class or association is generating material, make sure we help you spread your word, and you can do that by emailing us. Should you have been forwarded this email by a friend, and want to get your very own copy in your inbox moving forward, then simply follow the instructions on our newsletter page, where you can also register for different editions.

Finally, keep a weather eye on Sail-World. We are here to bring you the whole story from all over the world...

John Curnow
Editor, Sail-World AUS

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