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Vaikobi 2021 Boots - LEADERBOARD

48th Australian Tasar Championship at Toronto Amateur Sailing Club

by Jenny Sorensen 15 Jan 13:39 PST 29 December 2022 - 6 January 2023
The Burmans (2942) from reach to beat during the 48th Australian Tasar Championship at Toronto, Lake Macquarie, NSW © Michelle Havenstein

James & Tara Burman take gold in shifty and windy conditions

Very shifty and windy weather made havoc for most of the 33 boat fleet at this year's 48th Australian Tasar Championship which was run over the New Year at Toronto, Lake Macquarie NSW. There was one team however who performed brilliantly, scoring a net 14pts from 11 heats, 18pts from their nearest rival. They were the husband & wife team from Sydney's Northbridge SC 'James & Tara Burman'.

James & Tara are former National Champions, having just returned to sailing after 2 years off to have a baby. James, who has trained with the Australian Sailing team is also a former runner-up in the Laser Radial Worlds. He explained at one of the Class' Q&A sessions during the week, that as a result of his laser training, he's probably 'more dynamic' especially in his downward sailing techniques than most other competitors. Certainly with 'wild' shifts which resulted in many capsizes & waves whipped up by mod-fresh gusty breezes, having a skill for boat handling was a key element in this Regatta.

The next 4 positions behind the Burmans were closely contended by World & National Class Champions. Even these crews relied on utilising their 2 drops during the week, their places frequently swapped as the fluky weather took its toll. Running into 2nd place overall was 1986's Tasar World Champion Rick Longbottom sailing with Darryl Bentley. Together this duo have always been a very consistent & competitive team representing the Royal Australian Navy Sailing Association. In 3rd were our immediate past National & former World Champions Chris Dance & Peter Hackett from Mordialloc & Sandringham YC's in VIC, both fresh from racing recently at Worlds in Seattle. They led just 3 & 4 points respectively from 4th & 5th placed crews. These were former NS14, MG14 & Tasar National & State Champions Hugh & Anna Tait from Northbridge SC, and former multi World Contender Champion Mark Bulka sailing with son Oliver from VIC's McCrae YC.

So, what an exciting week of racing it became for all contestants, who gave it their all! Times between 1st and last finishers were minimal, reflecting the fierce competitiveness of the fleet. Despite lengthy course legs, the mark roundings were tight & quite often the scene for hailing starboards & buoy room, doing penalty turns or just circling to retrieve dropped whisker poles. One crew completely lost their rudder & the odd capsize didn't help congestion either, however the rescue boat was constantly pursuing the fleet to ensure safety on the course.

Fortunately a more harmonious atmosphere was experienced onshore. Sailors lent spare parts and tools to get fellow competitors back on the water for racing, whilst freely sharing knowledge in the boat park & Clubhouse post racing. Buddy Teams were matched up as well with the aim to improve performance, with the top 3 Buddies on HCP being recognised at final Presentation.

Teams came from NSW, VIC, TAS, WA, NT & the ACT to compete, a great achievement still in times of high Covid cases. The youngest team of sailors were Taj Duff & Lucas Schey, two boys from Gippsland Lakes VIC. They sailed exceptionally well in their first ever Tasar Nationals taking out the Youth Trophy. It was great to see six father/children teams too. The youngest crew was 12yo Lorelei Barnes- Smith, sailing with her dad Damien from WA on a NSW charter boat. Damien was chatting with 'Australian Tasar media' after completion of the last race, advising his daughter just told him 'I like sailing with you dad". The perfect feedback!

The Event also enticed many seniors. Included in the Super Grand Masters (SGM) category, were VIC's Heather Macfarlane & Chris Payne, former World & Nat Fireball Champions with Heather this year again, taking out the Lady Helm's Trophy. SGM's & former Tasar World Champions Paul & Bronwyn Ridgway, were also competing. They consistently scored in the top 15 spots despite recovering from recent surgery & Covid implications. In addition, competing in this Division was multi-national 505 champion Michael Quirk, sailing with his wife Marise. Finishing 17th overall they too experienced the thrills & spills of capsizing, as Michael later advised he'd never seen such adverse & taxing conditions ever on Lake Macquarie.

AND there were more thrills even before racing began! Sailors were extremely excited to hear that the skipper of Rolex Sydney-Hobart's Supermaxi Black Jack, Mark Bradford had entered. With Class registrations & weigh-ins concluding on 29 Dec 2022, it was quite a feat for Mark having just celebrated 3rd on line honours, to fly up from Hobart to Sydney, pick up their newly purchased Tasar and drive with his crew & wife Casandra to Lake Macquarie. The pair took out the Event's newcomers prize, a beautifully written & informative book by Elizabeth Kemmis, entitled 'Tasar - A Bethwaite Legacy'. With many high speed reaches enjoyed by all including the Bradfords, they topped off their Regatta with more enjoyment by leading the fleet to the top mark in the final heat, not bad at all!

Thus was the racing at Tasar's 48th Nationals. Off the water, sailors enjoyed daily post race presentations at the Club with sponsored local brews, wines & gifts, plus fun prizes were given for greatest stories of the day. With an assortment of evenings from Lake fireworks at NYE with a fabulous feasting table of local produce, to the pre layday evening of craftbeer, grain & food tasting to the Final night's presentation at the Royal Motor YC Toronto, it was a fabulous week for all.

The Presentation Night was a chance in addition, to recognise the wonderful Race support from the RMYC Toronto and host club & volunteers of the Toronto Amateur SC. Evan, Mark, Michelle & their team were impeccable on & off the water throughout the whole regatta. Appreciation & gifts were also presented to the Regatta's experienced & extremely knowledgeable Juror, Jeremey Atkinson.

A round of applause was made for the Event's Sponsors for without them, the Regatta & the whole sport of sailing in general would not be able to function.

The organising body, the NSW Tasar Association especially sends thanks to all participants. It was a classic 'we usually don't have conditions like this' type regatta, and it was comforting to hear that conditions were extremely challenging even from our top seed sailors, well done all!

Overall Results:

PosSail NoBoat NameHelmCrewClubStateCatR1R2R3R4R5R6R7R8R9R10R11Pts
1st2942Little Miss MagicJames BurmanTara BurmanNorthbridge Sailing ClubNSWApprentice Masters1‑323111113‑514
2nd2992Mirrored ElementRick LongbottomDarryl BentleyRoyal Australian Naval Sailing AssociatiNSWMasters529126‑1033‑10132
3rd2980MagicChris DancePeter HackettMordialloc Sailing Club/Sandringham YachVICMasters‑1511279574‑16339
4th2925SerendipityHugh TaitAnna TaitToronto Amateur Sailing ClubNSWMasters45358‑1048‑121442
5th2971BalanceMark BulkaOliver BulkaMcCrae Yacht ClubVICOpen2761063225‑19‑1543
6th2852Far OutMurray O'BrienLiam O'BrienMcCrae Yacht ClubVICOpen84‑12411128926‑1864
7th2969wacHeather MacfarlaneChris PayneSandringham Yacht ClubVICSuper Grand Masters312873‑17957‑141266
8th2968Rebel RebelClaire MeddSimon MeddSandringham Yacht ClubVICGrand Masters12‑141064766913‑2773
9th2903VivaceBrad StephensJennifer OvertonGeorges River Sailing ClubNSWGrand Masters7911812‑1312126‑231087
10th2780Faking CleverKerry FyfeMichael OBrienWoollahra Sailing ClubNSWSuper Grand Masters‑211619‑211041110134996
11th2811Definite MaybeAlan RileyJasmine EvendenMcCrae Yacht ClubVICOpen11114(OCS)28(RET)1948214101
12th2830Oogy WawaStuart TempletonNicole KidmanSomerton Yacht ClubSAMasters‑27851655318‑262021101
13th2871RidgididgePaul RidgwayBronwyn RidgwaySandringham Yacht ClubVICSuper Grand Masters‑201515‑1715871511511102
14th2964Ratz 3Gary RatcliffeRobyn RatcliffeGeorges River Sailing ClubNSWGrand Masters1313712142(RET)(DNC)142213110
15th2906Sea Major and MinorRalph StanfordImogen StanfordWoollahra Sailing ClubNSWOpenSCP61391718‑31111512‑22118
16th2859WindfixRoss MartinNatasha MartinSafety Beach Sailing ClubVICOpen14‑201614162020‑2610116127
17th2951TroubleMichael QuirkMarise HannafordBalmoral Sailing ClubNSWSuper Grand Masters9‑25221392517(DNC)21177140
18th2793Rattle and HumMelissa CrawfordDavid RoseSomerton Yacht ClubSAGrand Masters‑30‑292025192122141772147
19th2617WaimukaboutAndrew MartinImogen/Aurelia MartinSafety Beach Sailing ClubVICOpen2222171522141513‑238‑31148
20th2883SMACPeter DavisKaren DavisRoyal Yacht Club of Tasmania/Hampton SaiTASSuper Grand Masters1918‑2611181113‑28241816148
21st2956The WeekendNeil LongWendy LongSpeers Point Amateur Sailing ClubNSWGrand Masters18102419131621(DNC)‑251517153
22nd2844Bus RideMark BradfordCasandra BradfordWoollahra Sailing ClubNSWMasters‑2919‑2524251916171898155
23rd2823Goes to 11Philip PotterMonica TonnerSandringham Yacht ClubVICGrand Masters1621‑291824‑261819162419175
24th2977Edge of EquanimityJohn BalassHeather FortonBalmoral Sailing ClubNSWGrand Masters102414232330232019(DNF)‑31186
25th2734Something CoolMalcolm HandelOliver MeddNorthbridge Sailing ClubNSWOpen25261826‑2715141627‑2926193
26th1839WeaselTaj DuffLucas ScheyGippsland Lakes Yacht ClubVICJunior1717‑28272022272322‑2823198
27th2898FalkorMeika WrightSean AhernDarwin Sailing ClubNTMasters232323‑29‑29242621282125214
28th2819FireflyDerek HadwenLaurie HoffmanBalmoral Sailing ClubNSWGrand Masters2427212021282422(DNF)(DNC)31218
29th2777ValiantTim O'SheaJenny SorensenSomerton Yacht ClubSAMasters26‑28272226232527‑302520221
30th2727TangoAndrew McBrideKirsty GrahamWoollahra Sailing ClubNSWMasters28‑32302830272824‑312729251
31st1885ElusiveNeil TemperleyDavid TemperleyDobroyd Aquatic ClubNSWOpen(OCS)313131‑32293025203028255
32nd2728TokayMark RaysonArmineh HassanvandSpeers PointNSWApprentice Masters3133(NSC)3033(DNC)DNCDNC292624274
33rd1812Hei HeiDamien SmithLorelei Barnes‑SmithMounts Bay Sailing ClubWAOpen(OCS)303232313129(DNC)3231OCS282

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