Cock­burn Sound Re­gatta to mark ma­jor mile­stone

Southern Telegraph - - Telegraph Sport - John Percy

The waters of Man­gles Bay will again be filled with the sight of rac­ing yachts large and small over the fes­tive break as The Cruis­ing Yacht Club con­ducts its 60th Cock­burn Sound Re­gatta.

The Kwinana In­dus­tries Coun­cil Race to Rock­ing­ham will act as a feeder race to bring the metropoli­tan-based yachts down on Box­ing Day and spec­ta­tors on the beach and in the parks will have a grand­stand view of all the ac­tion, which will con­tinue over the fol­low­ing four days.

The in­au­gu­ral re­gatta was held and con­ducted by Royal Fresh­wa­ter Bay Yacht Club af­ter hold­ing the Prince Philip Cup for Dragonclass yachts in 1956 in Cock­burn Sound.

The need was seen for a club in Rock­ing­ham to be es­tab­lished and The Cruis­ing Yacht Club was formed that year and later took over the run­ning of the re­gatta.

In the early 1970s, the re­gatta used to run over a week and was re­put­edly the largest in the South- ern Hemi­sphere; with a large num­ber of dinghies mix­ing it with the keel­boats.

These days, mostly keel­boats will be rac­ing in a num­ber of sep­a­rate di­vi­sions and there will be a mul­ti­hull fleet to cater for cata­ma­rans and tri­marans.

Up to 60 boats are ex­pected to at­tend this year and rac­ing will be a mix­ture of Wind­ward/Lee­ward, Around the Buoys and Pas­sage races. Each di­vi­sion will have at least six races and there will be prizes for di­vi­sion win­ners along with one for the over­all re­gatta cham­pion.

The fastest boat will not nec­es­sar­ily be the win­ner as a so­phis­ti­cated hand­i­cap­ping sys­tem is used to en­sure the win­ner is the boat that best sails to its po­ten­tial.

Some of the boats are al­ways look­ing for an ex­tra crew mem­ber, so peo­ple may find them­selves press-ganged.

The club will be buzzing over the course of the re­gatta, with a full so­cial pro­gram planned and the Rock­ing­ham fore­shore will be the place to be over the Christ­mas break.

This year’s Cock­burn Sound Re­gatta will mark the event’s 60th an­niver­sary.

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