Jessie James wins to launch new cam­paign

Albany Extra - - Sport - Des Beeck

Di­vi­sion 1 skip­per Brett Hawker fi­nally launched his yacht for its first out­ing of the new sea­son last Satur­day and proved the win­ter lay-off had not made any dif­fer­ence to his sail­ing skills.

Although he had a slug­gish start, he had Jessie James mov­ing well as he chased the early leader, Mur­ray How­son in Sit­ting Bull, which had won the start and was well ahead.

Hawker was able to avoid the sand­banks around the har­bour course, whereas a few oth­ers gath­ered weed or were stuck in the mud.

All fleets be­gan their har­bour course rac­ing with a deep wa­ter fly­ing start be­cause of the ex­tremely low tide and the weather was balmy with a steady southerly at about 10 knots.

Mur­ray Deere, in Wild One, struck trou­ble early and lost valu­able time, but gave chase.

Jack Spaan­der­man was in com­mand of Crunchtime and the low tide did not help him and his crew as they bat­tled on sev­eral oc­ca­sions to ex­tri­cate them­selves from the mud. Jessie James closed the gap to Sit­ting Bull, which was also hav­ing its first race, and was an­nounced the win­ner on hand­i­cap in a fine ef­fort.

Sit­ting Bull was sec­ond and fastest in a good show, and a dis­ap­pointed Deere took third place on a frus­trat­ing day.

Di­vi­sion 2 had Neil Wor­rell sail­ing with a skele­ton crew and opted to go with just jib and main, en­abling him to get a de­cent hand­i­cap, which he used to his ad­van­tage to score a win over Josh Hughes in Joker and Gary Ea­ton in Farr Star.

Joker was the lead­ing boat through­out and Hughes im­proves each week­end. He was sec­ond on hand­i­cap and also recorded fastest time in a fine dis­play.

Ea­ton had Farr Star do­ing well on cer­tain legs with some good spin­naker work and took third place.

The Fly­ing Fif­teens had a close and ex­cit­ing race, with Si­mon Lucas lead­ing, with FFor­ever Young and Aileen Lucas in Crazy on his tran­som through­out.

It was neck and neck with only eight sec­onds sep­a­rat­ing them at the fin­ish, Crazy win­ning eas­ily on hand­i­cap and FFor­ever Young sec­ond and fastest.

Vipers were back in ac­tion and Michael Cameron and Steven Dines were in­volved in a ding-dong bat­tle in a fierce en­counter.

Cameron was al­ways the leader, with Dines shad­ow­ing him through­out, but was pipped to the post. In the mixed dinghies, there were enough boats to form three dif­fer­ent fleets and the com­pet­i­tive na­ture as ex­posed.

The Lasers saw Joseph Har­vey vic­to­ri­ous with This Way Up, fol­lowed by Jack O’Far­rell in The Big Rig in sec­ond place, with Luke Pas­coe third in The Cracker.

The Mir­ror win­ner was William Wise sail­ing Twixta in a great per­for­mance.

Sec­ond was Tom O’Far­rell sail­ing Aussie Lar­rikin, and third went to Henry Bel­lenger in Magic Hap­pens.

Two GP 14s had a match race and the win­ner was Blue Boat No.4, sailed by Theresa Robin­son, with Cher­rie An­der­son skip­per­ing White Boat No.1.

It was a great day of sail­ing, with 21 boats on the wa­ter and a few more ex­pected to join them.

Pic­ture: Des Beeck

Jack Spaan­der­man in Crunchtime and Mur­ray Deer in Wild One have a close call at the start.

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