Race 4 of the 18 foot skiff NSW championship

18ft Skiffs
N.S.W. Championship, Race 4
Sunday, 10 February 2013
Sydney Harbour

The Thurlow Fisher Lawyers 18ft Skiff team of Michael Coxon, Trent Barnabas and David O’Connor gave a wonderful exhibition on Sydney Harbour today when they took out Race 4 of the N.S.W. Championship in an 18-25-knots South-East wind.

After trailing Gotta Love It 7 by just 3s at the first windward mark, Thurlow Fisher Lawyers grabbed the lead when Gotta Love It 7 capsized and from that point Thurlow’s crew were brilliant as they led clearly for the rest of the course.

The battle behind the winner saw many positional changes throughout the race before Smeg (Nick Press, Dan Phillips, Dave Ewings) finally came home 1m25s back in second place.

Pure Blonde (Tom Clout, Rob Bell, Matt Wark) worked her way through the fleet, after trailing early, to finish a further 5m9s in third place.

James Dorron and his Mojo Wine team showed their skill by finishing fourth after gear failure which prevented their use of a spinnaker on two of the latter runs.

John Winning’s Yandoo was fifth, to give the team the series lead on 16 points.

Overall standings has Smeg in second place on 18, followed by Gotta Love It 7 (Seve Jarvin) on 29, Thurlow Fisher Lawyers 31, Pure Blonde 34, Coopers-Rag & Famish Hotel (Jack Macartney) and Mojo Wine on 35.

Thurlow Fisher and De’Longhi-Rabbitohs (Simon Nearn) won the start and were leading the group on the LHS of the course near Steele Point.

Gotta Love It 7 and Smeg elected to go to the right and sailed to the western side of Shark Island.

The two groups converged only 50 metres from the Rose Bay windward mark and there was little difference between them as Gotta Love It 7 led Thurlow Fisher Lawyers by the mere 3s.

Shortly after rounding the mark, Gotta Love It 7 capsized and the resulting damage has caused serious damage to the hull, which could have a drastic affect on the team’s chances of defending their Giltinan title next week.

The conditions were took a heavy toll on the race as six teams failed to complete the course, while four others did not make it to the start.

Six photos and today’s result sheet are attached.

More photos will be published later on http://www.18footers.com.au and http://www.flying18s.com. A video coverage of the race can be seen on http://www.18footerstv.com

Don’t forget ‘Pick the Podium’ with prizes to be won by just making some selections on which teams you think will fill the placings in each race. For full details go to http://www.18footerstv.com/18-promo

Next week we have the biggest 18ft Skiff event on the world calendar when the Australian 18 Footers League will conduct the Winning Group J.J. Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship for 2013.

There will be NO ferry following the Invitation Race next Friday, however there will be a spectator ferry following each of the seven races of the championship (including two ferries for Race 7 on Sunday 24 February).

Dates for the championship races are February 16, 17, 19, 20, 21, 23, 24. All races (except those on February 16 and 23) will start at 3pm. Races on February 16 and 23 will start at 4pm.

The spectator ferry will depart Double Bay Public Wharf 30 minutes before the scheduled start time of each race.

Frank Quealey
Australian 18 Footers League








Race 5 of the 18 foot skiff Australian Championship

Australian Championship, Race 5, Sunday, 3 February 2013


Coopers-Rag & Famish Hotel took out Race 5 of the Australian 18ft Skiff Championship on Sydney Harbour today, but the runner up Gotta Love It 7 became the 2012-2013 National champion in the series.


The Coopers-Rag & Famish Hotel crew of Jack Macartney, David Witt and Mark Kennedy were superb with their #2 rig in the 20-knot SW-SSW winds to take out the race by 1m14s.

After an early race incident which cost the team many positions, Seve Jarvin, Scott Babbage and Peter Harris recovered strongly to bring Gotta Love It 7 home in second place behind Coopers-Rag & Famish Hotel.


Last week’s winner Smeg (Nick Press, Dan Phillips and Dave Ewings) finished a further 1m15s back in third place today for an overall second in the championship.

For the defending champion Thurlow Fisher Lawyers, and series leader going into today’s race, it was a disaster as the skiff finished 11th for an overall third place.

Gotta Love It 7’s final total was 8 points, followed by Smeg on 10, Thurlow Fisher Lawyers 11, Coopers-Rag & Famish Hotel 22, Yandoo (John Winning) 29 and The Kitchen Maker (Malcolm Page) 32.

Appliancesonline.com.au (Micah Lane) finished fourth today and would have been fourth overall but withdrew from today’s race because of a pre-race incident, which was going to be the subject of protest.

Thurlow Fisher Lawyers was always near or in the lead over the first lap of the three-lap windward-leeward course.

Coopers-Rag & Famish Hotel was never far from Thurlow Fisher and the pair had a great battle over that first lap.

Coxon and his Thurlow Fisher team, along with Gotta Love It 7, elected to sail the Northern side of the course on the second windward beat and lost out to the Coopers-Rag team which were in mid harbour and better breeze.

This allowed Coopers-Rag & Famish to open up a clean break back at the Clarke Island windward mark and from that point the team were never headed.

Thurlow Fisher Lawyers was still in a good position to retain the title, but a capsize at the bottom mark on the second lap forced the team out of contention on the day and in the championship.

The Kitchen Maker, skippered by Olympic 470 Gold Medalist Malcolm Page, and Lumix (Jonathan Whitty) both had strong performances to finish fifth and six respectively.


Pure Blonde (Tom Clout) and Mojo Wine (James Dorron) were two other skiffs which performed well on the day and they fought out a close battle right to the finish for seventh and eighth

More photos will be published later on www.18footers.com.au and www.flying18s.com. A video coverage of the race can be seen on www.18footerstv.com

Spectator Ferry photos will also be published on www.18footers.com.au and www.flying18s.com during the coming week.

Don’t forget ‘Pick the Podium’ again this season with prizes to be won by just making some selections on which teams you think will fill the placings in Sunday’s race. For full details go to http://www.18footerstv.com/18-promo

The club’s regular spectator ferry will follow next Sunday’s Race, leaving Double Bay Wharf at 2.15pm.


Frank Quealey

Australian 18 Footers League







Race 3 of the 18 foot skiffs Australian Championships

18ft Skiffs
Australian Championship, Race 3
Sunday, 26 January 2013
Sydney Harbour

With North East winds in excess of 20-knots, today’s Race 3 of the Australian 18ft Skiff Championship became a battle of survival as only seven teams managed to complete the course on Sydney Harbour.


Smeg, skippered by four times Interdominion 12ft Skiff champion Nick Press, and his talented crew of Dan Phillips and Dave Ewings, mastered the conditions to score a 1m7s win from Coopers-Rag & Famish Hotel (Jack Macartney, David Witt and Mark Kennedy).

Defending champion and series leader, Thurlow Fisher Lawyers was a further 3m38s back in third place, ahead of Gotta Love It 7 (Seve Jarvin), Yandoo (John Winning) and De’Longhi-Rabbitohs (Simon Nearn).

Thurlow Fisher Lawyers (5 points, net3) holds a narrow lead over Gotta Love It 7 (8 points, net 4). Coopers-Rag & Famish Hotel has a total of 13 points, but her discard of 8 leaves a net 5 and a real chance for the title


Today’s winner, Smeg is also still a good chance with a net score of six points.

Smeg trailed Lumix (Jonathan Whitty) at the first windward mark but once she hit the lead downwind was never headed over the rest of the course.

Many competitors either failed to reach the start line or were forced to retire with gear failure.

Both Thurlow Fisher and Gotta Love It 7 had ‘swims’.

Brisbane’s Winning Appliances (Shane Smith) came to Sydney for the weekend and her crew showed their skills with a fifth over the line.

Press was happy with the win and said the biggest problem his team had was the spectator craft on the harbour for the Australia Day celebrations.

When as whether they had any capsizes, for’ard hand Dave Ewings quipped: “No way. It would have been too much like hard work to get up again if we did”

Race 4 of the championship will be sailed tomorrow, with the last race next Sunday.

Frank Quealey
Australian 18 Footers League

24.8 knots on the TKM 18 footer

Nice ride on the TKM 18 with Will Phillips and Darren McKavanaugh. Cracked 24.8 knots before the top spreader cracked off and we retired from the race.


Thanks to Will for flying up from Geelong for the weekend and as usual, Darren, for asking the question.


Spreader is back on the mast ready for another fast ride today.