Re­gatta goes swim­mingly

Manjimup-Bridgetown Times - - Sport - Shan­non Boch­enek

WALPOLE’S pop­u­la­tion al­most tre­bled over the Labour Day long week­end when an es­ti­mated 600 peo­ple trav­elled to the town to at­tend the Walpole in the Trees Re­gatta.

Walpole Yacht Club hosted nearly 150 boats over the week­end com­pet­ing across nine di­vi­sions.

“With that there’s prob­a­bly 300plus com­peti­tors on the wa­ter,” event co­or­di­na­tor and ex-club com­modore Ma­ree Pick­ett es­ti­mated.

“It’s re­ally quite di­verse,” she said.

“Our youngest com­peti­tor is prob­a­bly seven, right up to 80years-old.”

Com­peti­tors came from right across WA to join an es­ti­mated 20 lo­cal sailors, in­clud­ing rep­re­sen­ta­tives from Perth, Bun­bury, Au­gusta, Esper­ance, Geographe Bay, Ger­ald­ton and Den­mark.

Pick­ett said the run­ning of the re­gatta re­lied heav­ily on sup­port from the com­mu­nity as well as from yacht clubs around the State.

“A huge chunk of the com­mu­nity gets in­volved in set­ting this up,” she said.

“Over­all, for the re­gatta we have over 140 vol­un­teers.

“This year we’ve had safety sup­port boats com­ing from Man­durah and Al­bany and all over.”

The 2018 re­gatta marks six years since the event’s re-emer­gence in 2013 fol­low­ing a 12-year hia­tus.

Pick­ett said the club had al­ready re­ceived feed­back and con­grat­u­la­tions for host­ing a “very pro­fes­sion­ally-run” event.

Pic­ture: Sarah Walker

The laser fleet heads up-wind dur­ing the first day of the Walpole in the Trees Re­gatta.

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