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Harken Open Championship 2020 at Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club - Day 1

by Katie Pellew 21 Nov 07:30 PST 20-22 November 2020
Harken Open Championship 2020 - Day 1 © Brendan Rourke

Day 1 of the Harken Open Championships saw eleven teams representing CYCA, RSYS & RPAYC battle it out on the race course in the club's fleet of Elliott 7s for a total of eight fleet races.

Sitting strong on the top of the leader board is current Sailing League Champion David Chapman (RSYS) and his team, recording a strong scorecard of 1,2,2,1,1.

Nestled closely together in 2nd-4th places with only 4 points between them is Hugo Stoner (CYCA), Will Dargaville (RPAYC), Nick Garland (RPAYC) & Clare Costanzo (RPAYC) respectively.

Previous Harken winner from 2008 and triple David Lukins Champion Tom Spithill had the following to say post racing today, "Today was a really fun format, everyone commented on just how great it was to get back out on the water, we were surprised by a few teams that did really well and showed the younger guys how it was done. For us personally it was a bit of a yoyo day we came first in one race and then last in another. It really shows the closeness of the field, we are looking forward to the next two days of racing with both fleet racing and match racing ahead.''

The surprise of the day came from the RPAYC team of Jason Antill, Scott OÇonnor, Annie Taylor & Mark Griffith who could be described as one of the more senior teams, they started extremely strong to record a 2nd & 1st place in the first 2 races of the day. Speaking post-race Mark Griffith commented "Yes, well experience paid off for us today, calm under pressure we were able to keep working our way forward when back in the pack".

Racing continues tomorrow at 1100hrs with another full round of fleet racing scheduled in a moderate southerly breeze, to decide the top four teams that will move through to the match racing series whilst the 5th - 12th placed teams will continue in a fleet racing final series.

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* One team had to drop out last minute due to illness.

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