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Australian 16ft Skiff National Championships at Manly 16ft Skiff Sailing Club - Overall

by Adam Lucius 14 Jan 06:29 PST 7-14 January 2023

A broken rudder pin worth around $20 left one boat heart-broken and another ecstatic as the Australian 16ft Championships ended in the same dramatic way they started at Manly on Saturday.

St George entrant Noakes (Dave O'Connor) looked set for the club's first national title in 25 years as it sat eight places ahead of nearest rival Typhoon (Nathan Wilmot) with three-quarters of the final race done. But in another reminder to take nothing for granted in sailing, Noakes took a swim and resurfaced to find its rudder pin out. Crew member Pete Mackie did his best to repair the damage while treading water, but the task proved impossible and the boat and devastated crew required a tow back to the beach.

Typhoon couldn't believe its luck, slowly moving its way through the pack to finish ninth and secure a second successive national title and a win for Manly in the club's 100th year. "We went into Grotto and a big Pro-Dive boat went through and we tacked and capsized the boat," Noakes' Ricky Bridge explained. "We tried to get going but the pin had come out of the bottom gudgeon. "I'm not sure how it happened - it's the one that got away but what do you do? "You've just got to deal with it."

While it was pure devastation in the Noakes camp, it was all smiles 200m away as Typhoon celebrated one of the great escapes. "The whole race we were just working as hard as we could thinking anything could happen," Wilmot said. "We had a drop to fall back on and they didn't so we kept chipping away and in the end it worked for us. "It's a shame it ended that way for them because they're a really good bunch of blokes and had a good week. We definitely got a bit lucky there."

Noakes won four heats but an 18th, a 32nd and, ultimately, a DNF cruelled its hopes. Typhoon finished seven points clear of clubmate Moonen Yachts (Daniel Turner) with Noakes third, Belmont's SKE Electrical (Scott Babbage) fourth and IMEI (Dave Gilmour) from Manly in fifth. The Craig Nicholls-owned Typhoon enjoyed six top five finishes but started the last day three points in arrears of Noakes. It needed a minor miracle - and was duly delivered one.

Wilmot, bowman Mal Page and stand-in sheethand Zac Barnabas, who came out of semi-retirement just two weeks ago to help the team, were swarmed by well-wishers as they celebrated with a freshly tapped keg of beer at the boatshed. Page, an Olympic champion like Wilmot, has seen plenty in his time in sailing but still looked slightly shocked at how it all unfolded. He said: "It was a weird race. Noakes had it in the bag really until that equipment failure. "It's very unfortunate for them but I've always said good luck and bad luck is dealt out equally throughout the week and maybe life was paying us back in some way. "I do feel for the Noakes boys because you don't want to necessarily win like that, but you take your breaks in sailing when you get them. "It's been great working with 'Ed' (Nicholls) and I'm so happy for him and happy we were able to deliver Manly a national title in their 100th year."

For Barnabas, who had a year off sailing to concentrate on his burgeoning rugby career, this was a pinch yourself moment. "I was a last-minute call up and to be able to sail with these guys and win a nationals is incredible," he said. "I couldn't say no to them and I'm glad I didn't."

The handicap win was some slight consolation for Noakes, the St George boys finishing on top ahead of MH44 (Eva Attwood) from Middle Harbour, Manly's Cunninghams (Nick Connor) and Eric's Storage (Harry Lawson). Manly's Southerly (Zoe Dransfield) won the 16s female division, Typhoon took out the masters and Belmont's Light and Wonder topped the youth category.

Overall Results:

PosBoat NameSkipperClubR1R2R3R4R5R6R7R8R9R10Pts
1TyphoonNathan WilmotM16SSCABN21[10]63525[9]24
2Moonen YachtsDaniel TurnerM16SSCABN5258[12]3[11]6231
3NoakesDave O'ConnorStGSCABN[32]51118611[49F]33
4SKE ElectricalScott BabbageB16ABN[19][35]7315152134
5IMEIDavid GilmourM16SSCABN46245[10]9[10]535
6Sail RacingFelix GrechM16SSCABN13[12]2[22]8771139
7NHS Building SuppliesTom DawsonB16ABN[49F][28]3567173344
8Eric's StorageHarry LawsonMH16SCABN6414[17]19[20]41048
9CunninghamsNick ConnorM16SSCABN[29]1111924[21]8651
10SkelconHenry MakinB16ABN231087[27]28[49F]866
11TribecaBen BradleyStGSCABN1596[20]4[21]10121571
12DominosMichael QuirkB16ABN8[20]161316[28]316476
13MustoHugh StodartM16SSCABN1117[21]121015411[49B]80
14Light & WonderMatt MeaneyB16ABN9[24][24]1117116132087
15Botany AccessChris ThomasM16SSCABN1012914822[27][24]1691
16SoutherlyZoe DransfieldM16SSCABN38[30][32]111718152193
17NozomiAndrew ChapmanB16ABN25[29][49F]101318.516147103.5
18Red Pumps RedTyler DransfieldM16SSCABN121941519[24][23]1817104
19Fluid BuildingClint BowenM16SSCABN141325[27][30]2312912108
20Sutech Building ConsultantsMichael KoernerM16SSCABN77152325[26][28]1914110
21Infinity RiggingLachlan SteelStGSCABN17161818[21]161317V[36]115
22RW RetailCarlton SmithDPSSABN20[31]1721201414[25]23129
23Red PumpsBruce SavageM16SSCABN[36]25131993122[49H]13132
24Outback MarineGeorgia ClancyM16SSCABN16[27]261614[27]252618141
25Capital Brewing Co.Jessica IlesM16SSCABN1323[42][36]2613301724146
26Noakes BlueRyan EwingsStGSCABN242122267[29]26[31]25151
27KamikazeRichard WilliamsMH16SCABN30[34]2322[33]1219.7V27157.7
28ShebangAnthony KingM16SSCABN22[30]2925[39]25152222160
29ChubbsJesse DransfieldM16SSCABN26.518202423[32]3121[49H]163.5
30FirestoppingAlex HartM16SSCABN26.5[38]2829[35]20242030177.5
31CMG Property MaintenanceMichael VincentMH16SCABN2126272824[36][42]3319178
32ToogaraJosh TaskerStGSCABN3315[35]302818.532[49F]26182.5
33Employment HeroWill DivolaM16SSCABN182232[41]3130[49F]2335191
34EdendaMatilda LangDSCABN28[36][39]313235332934222
35Bartley Construction 16Nathan LilleyM16SSCABN35333135[49O]37[39]2829228
36MH44Eva AttwoodMH16SCABN36N19N41373438[44]27[49F]232
37FIREBALLJames DowneyM16SSCABN[40]373838[42]33293028233
38P LeahyMark WillsonMH16SCABN343233332939[43][49F]33233
39WichardZac HeyesB16ABN3740343436[44][49F]3537253
40KonamiBethany SherryB16ABN3845194338[49B]37[49F]49C269
41WeathertexJess RiversB16ABN4442[49F]40433435[49F]31269
42SheadMarilyn SorensenMH16SCABN424137[44]414234[49F]32269
43Man FluNicholas StabbackMH16SCABN39[43]364240403637[49F]270
44Skiffropes.comAmy HargraveMH16SCABN453940[49F]45413834[49F]282
45Joe Walsh RiggingKye RiversM16SSCABN[49N][49C]44453743403639284
46XXXX GoldNeale JonesB16ABN4144[48N]44N[46]46413238286
47Erics RemovalsJoshua TheunissenMH16SCABN4346[49F][49C]444549F49F49F325
48Bella GroupGeorgia SteensonB16ABN[49C][49C]49C49C49C49C49C49C49C343

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