Woollahra, Sunday 9th March, At the last heat of the 18’ skiff JJ Giltnan Championship the Americas Cup cats were sparring on the harbour, giving us much spectator traffic.
All the boats opted for 2nd rig in the park – but that was a wrong call; breeze never came in as expected. There was an underpowered north easterly on a composite course (to avoid clashes with the above-mentioned conveyances).
From the start through work up into Milk-beach, to south of Nielsen Park, “Garde” was away in the light: then there was a tricky breeze at the top of the course which saw “Lincoln Crowne” tack on 2 shifts to lead, at the top mark for the run out of the bay to Point Piper.
Three works to the GAs Buoy off Nielsen Park: “Vantage Real Estate” with guest skipper practicing for the Brisbane nationals fast in the light. “Garde”, “Lincoln Crowne” and “Vantage Real Estate” trading places up the work.“Garde” got around the mark in the sloppy spectator wash cleanly and showed a clean pair of heels to the other 2 boats who came down together. Bunched and re-started at the bottom mark for better training, and again on the work. “Garde” and “Vantage Real Estate” were slightly better powered in the very soft breeze causing “Lincoln Crowne” to slip behind to round the mark in that order.
On the run “Garde” went too far towards Bradley’s Head, allowing “Vantage Real Estate” and “Lincoln Crowne” to pass them and lead them into the bottom mark for the last work. “Lincoln Crowne” was slower on the work, “Garde” and “Vantage Real Estate” getting a gap at the mark. On the run to the finish “Garde” got a great gust of wind off Shark Island and took this to the finish, to win by a good margin. “Lincoln Crowne” becalmed between Shark Island and Steel Point allowing “Vantage Real Estate” to skate off for second. “Lincoln Crowne” came in 3rd.
Next week the final heat of the Club Championship, with Vantage Real Estate, Garde, Gemmell Sails and Lincoln Crowne all neck and neck and able to win. There were only 4 starters on Sunday due to the Parramatta Championship on Saturday. Parramatta River Championship no event sponsor and 16 boats started.