Whales on course for Chal­lenger’s Cup

Whitsunday Times - - ON THE WATER -

TWO whales cre­ated an un­usual ob­struc­tion dur­ing round four of the Whit­sun­day Sail­ing Club’s NQ Tele­com Chal­lenger’s Cup on Sun­day.

The mother and calf were in the mid­dle of the wind­ward/lee­ward course in Pi­o­neer Bay, with all boats hav­ing to keep clear dur­ing the race.

In Di­vi­sion 1, Mal Richard­son, from Port Dou­glas, took ad­van­tage of a fi­nal op­por­tu­nity to tune his Nacra 36 Mal­ice for the up­com­ing Abell Point Ma­rina Air­lie Beach Race Week. Mal­ice fought a bat­tle around the course against Spirit, skip­pered by Ja­son Guard.

Tulip, skip­pered by Bernie van’t Hof, rev­elled in the light con­di­tions and led the Di­vi­sion 2 fleet around the course, tak­ing wins on line hon­ours and cor­rected time.

Wob­bly Boot (Craig Pic­cinelli), also sailed well to pick up sec­ond place ahead of Reig­ni­tion (Charles Wal­lis) who came in third.

Trea­sure VIII (Clay Bau­man), though short-handed, en­joyed the train­ing on the day.

Break­away (Rob Davis), had the best start in Di­vi­sion 3 and fought a good bat­tle with Lorna Rose Too (Pete Mitchel­son) and Riff Raff (Dan White).

Lorna Rose Too crossed the fin­ish line first but Break­away was the even­tual win­ner on cor­rected time, fol­lowed by Riff Raff in sec­ond and Lorna Rose Too in third.

In the off­beach di­vi­sion, Ben Urch fought sin­gle-handed against Dan Scott and Steve Gib­son, even­tu­ally win­ning the race.

Over­all, WSC Race Of­fi­cer Tim Parker said this Chal­lenger’s Cup round gave com­peti­tors plenty of op­por­tu­ni­ties to prac- tice their crew work ahead of race week, with some very clean gybes and spin­naker drops prac­tised at the bot­tom mark.

WHALE ASTERN: Whit­sun­day Sail­ing Club com­peti­tor Quick­skips, pic­tured here with a hum­back whale that ven­tured onto the Chal­lenger's Cup race course on Sun­day af­ter­noon.

CHAL­LENGERS: Chal­lenger's Cup divi­sional win­ners Bernie van't Hof and Rob Davis (left) and Ja­son Gard (right) with race spon­sor Leo Ro­driguez (NQ Tel­com) and his daugh­ter Tea­gan (cen­tre) af­ter Sun­day's Chal­lenger's Cup race.

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