Fifty Years Fast: History of the Javelins in Australia and New Zealand The Pursuit of Dreams: Evolution of the Pacer Pursuit Setting the Pace: The 2010-11 Pacer States Offshore Antics: The 2011 Melbourne to Hobart Faster Sailing: Are you losing speed when turning?
Commodore Bruce Fraser Vice Commodore Ian McHugh Rear Commodore Will Sharp Secretary Phillip Connard Treasurer Chris Neyland Membership Susan Sharp Committee: Paul Hardie, Peter Sharp, Thomas Ruether
Training: Paul Hardie, Thomas Ruether, Ian McHugh, Bruce Fraser, Peter Sharp, Phillip Connard, Chris Neyland, Lachlan Sharp
Webmaster Phillip Connard
Contact: Email: firstname.lastname@example.org P.O. Box 16, Black Rock Vic 3193 Phone 03 9589 6222
OW FAR we have come! This Summer-Autumn 2011 issue is the biggest yet with 16 pages of sailing action from the folks at Beaumaris Yacht Club. Cast your minds back to the first issue of the new look version of The Reef in early 2009 with 8 pages as a comparison... As I’m sure readers have noticed, I’m constantly trying new layouts, graphics, designs and colours. Each issue evolves from the previous and when I look back four issues ago the differences are significant. That being said – if anyone has any comments, criticisms, suggestions or questions I encourage you to have a chat to me, send me an email or give me a call. After all, this is a magazine about our Club and is made for the members and friends of our Club. The best thing that could happen is that this magazine reflects the people who make up Beaumaris Yacht Club. So, if you love something, hate something, think there is something missing or anything else, let me know. Submissions from members and friends have been more plentiful this issue (for a full list of contributors see breakout, left) however there is always room for more. Submissions don’t have to be full articles (though they are always nice!) they could be ideas, gossip,
photos, short bits of info, random facts and so on. So I encourage all our readers, if you think of something, hear something or see something you think might have a place in an issue of The Reef send it in. You don’t need to wait for me to send out email reminders about submissions; I’ll happily take them any time of the year. Once this issue is sent to the printers the very next night I’ll be on the computer setting up some of the artwork and templates for the next issue. The cycle never stops. To all those who sail at BYC – I apologise for all the times I may have got too close during a race in a Rescue Boat in the pursuit of good photos! As anyone who has ever tried to take sailing photos knows, approximately 1 percent of the shots taken in an afternoon are “wow” photos – the front cover of this issue was one of these. Waves, spray, distance and occasional poor timing all contribute to making sailing a hard sport to successfully photograph. I will distribute all the photos I have taken over the past two seasons at the AGM and Presentation function on July 24. Once again, thank you to those who contributed to this issue, without you none of this would be possible. The Reef will be back in late 2011 bigger and better than ever. Will Sharp Editor.
Editor: Will Sharp Email: email@example.com Ph: 03 9878 1997
Contributors: Bruce Fraser, Jim French, Peter Sharp, Stephen Whiteside, Bill Williams, Brett Williams, Thomas Ruether, Luke Cromie, Peter Lesic, Peter Banham, Shane Baker, Steb Fisher, Pam Sharp, Ian McHugh, Lachlan Sharp. FRONT COVER: Javelin 367 heading downwind in March 2011… Pity it’s not the new boat Rod!
Ruben Sharp (Editor’s nephew) at 10 months receiving a lesson from the Editor in apparent wind sailing and hydrodynamics... We start ‘em young in the Sharp Family!
HAT A successful sailing season!
The Adult Training program has been very successful again this season with some very enthusiastic trainees and a committed training team. Fantastic!. I thank all our members who got involved and for their support of Paul Hardie, Ian McHugh and Lachlan Sharp. Similarly the Junior Training program has introduced some new faces to sailing and helped some of the more experienced children to further improve their sailing skills. Thanks to Thomas Ruether, Phillip Connard, Chris Neyland and the team of dedicated helpers and parents who assisted every Sunday morning rigging boats, shepherding those who would prefer to have water fights, washing and cleaning gear and so on. I have enjoyed manning the coach boat and assisting with the Advanced Juniors group.
which raised over $1200. A great effort, thanks to Phil and Janette Connard for coordinating the event and their team of helpers. BYC is endeavouring to book another such event as soon as we can and all members are encouraged to join the roster and help out. Our volunteers are very important and I thank the Tower staff, Pam Sharp and Mike Kenyon, the Rescue and Race Management team, Rod and Lesley McCubbin, Will Sharp and Geoff and Chris Perkins, the Training staff, Thomas Ruether, Phillip Connard, Chris Neyland, Paul Hardie, Ian McHugh, Lachlan Sharp and Robert Gibson, the Canteen coordinators, Avril McHugh, Susan Sharp and Lorraine Fraser. These volunteers are at the Club almost every Sunday. I alsothank those members who volunteer to be rostered for kitchen and other duties. I encourage other members to help fill the gaps in the Duty Roster!
Many members will have Our Rescue and Race noticed that the sign on Management team has table has moved from benefited from the arriunder the stairs to next val of some new volunto the front door, it’s old teers - Robert Gibson, home now occupied by a who drives the inflatable large locker. BYC is supcoach boat for the Adult porting the Rotary Club Training program, and of Hampton and Bayside Geoff and Chris Perkins City Council with the who are being trained storage use of a by Will Sharp on Sunday (L-R) Rotary Club of Hampton President mornings to runthe Res- Jennifer Newton, Rotary member Jennifer “Mobichair” water accue Boats during the Fox, BYC Commodore Bruce Fraser and cess wheelchair for disabled people. This will afternoon racing sesBayside City Council Mayor Cr Alex del allow them access to the Porto at the launch of the Mobichair at BYC. sions. Welcome to our calm lagoon inside the new members and I reef in front of the BYC clubhouse. Bayside hope that you enjoy your time at BYC. The City Council will manage the use and mainRescue and Race Management team has also tainence of the chair and BYC is happy to asbeen fortunate to regain Rod and Leslie sist the all parties by storing the chair. McCubbin as often as possible. was officially launched on The BYC Christmas Function in December was The Mobichair th a great success with 70 attendees including Wednesday 9 February 2011 with a BBQ and many of our new members, trainees and their demonstration of the chair. The chair was families. Special thanks to Father Christmas, officially launched by Bayside City Council families with young children really enjoyed his Mayor Cr Alex del Porto with the President of arrival on a Rescue Boat, not to mentionthe the Rotary Club of Hampton, Jennifer Newton presents that followed! Congratulations to and Jennifer Fox, the prime movers for organAvril, Susan, Lorraine and their team of help- ising the purchase, storage and usage arrangeers on organising and providing such a great ments for the Mobichair at BYC. function. Thanks also to Natalie Ruether and family for the crepes, a wonderful treat enjoyed by all.
I hope everyone enjoys the rest of the season and I hope to see you all at the AGM and Presentation function on July 24!
BYC conducted a very successful fundraising sausage sizzle at Mentone Bunnings in January
Bruce Fraser Commodore.
April 3 Championship Race 5 (Roger Fagan Trophy)
April 24 Easter weekend - No scheduled sailing
February 6 2010-11 Closing Regatta Function after sailing (Details coming soon)
July 24 AGM and Presentation Function
October 2 Opening Regatta 2011-12
S I WRITE this, season 2010-11 is drawing to a close. The summer-thatwasn’t has finished and we are enjoying relatively stable weather patterns leading to some consistent breezes. The wind this season has been rather one-dimensional with most Sundays seeing wind speeds of around 11-14 knots – great for sailing however the challenges offered by strong breezes and light days are missed. Up until five to six years ago the regular weather for a Sunday afternoon was 16-19 knot sou’westerlies with BIIIIIG 1.5 - 2m seas rolling through (not too bad going upwind but definitely something else downwind for two teenage brothers who had only recently made the jump from Pacers to Javelins!!) This being Melbourne, who knows what next season will bring?
Speaking of weather, there are three different forecasting services that provide fairly accurate forecasts. The first is of course the Bureau of Meteorology Port Phillip Bay forecast (www.bom.gov.au) the second is Seabreeze (www.seabreeze.com.au) and the third is the BOM Forecast Wind model also found at www.bom.gov.au. Taken together, these three forecasting services can provide a reasonably accurate picture of what Mother Nature intends to throw at us sailors each Sunday. But I encourage everyone to KEEP CHECKING the forecasts!! A forecast is just a prediction of what may occur and will often change significantly between when it is first issued and the day it is predicting. So if you have a look at a forecast on Wednesday and don’t like what you see, don’t write Sunday off! Give it time as things may look much better a few days later. With the end of the season drawing closer, both the Junior and Senior training programs are also winding up (A full report on both these programs can be found on Pages 6 and 7 of this issue) and it is great to see some of the members from the Senior training program making the jump into afternoon racing. Thank you to Ian McHugh, Lachlan Sharp and Peter Sharp for taking people out in the afternoons and introducing them to racing... it’s not the big scary event it may appear to be! Staffing the Rescue Boats has been a bit of a struggle over the past couple of seasons however this is set to change. Rod and Lesley McCubbin are aiming to spend more time at BYC in the coming weeks and next season and I cannot stress enough how lucky we are to have them in our Club. Since late January the Club has been running a Rescue and Race Management training course to teach potential Rescue Boat skippers all aspects of the role. The course is run most Sunday mornings and teaches new skippers how to drive the boats in all conditions, the safety aspects of sailing, rescue and recovery procedures, starts and course laying. Results! They’re what we race for and the first thing everyone wants to know when they get back to shore. Well done to everyone who competed
in State and National Championships over the past few months. There were no entries in the Pacer Nationals at Robe in SA this year however a fleet of seven BYC boats headed to Williamstown SC over the Labour Day Weekend to vie for the State Championship. Results are listed below. The Javelins had a fleet of four BYC boats at the Australian and South Pacific Championships at McCrae Yacht Club this season, followed by a looooong State Championship stretching out over the length of the season and incorporating 10 races... more than a Nationals! Results from both these events are also listed below. Congratulations to Peter and Lachlan Sharp, the 2010-11 Javelin Victorian Champions. Pacer State Championships 2010-11 11th – Limelight, Paul and Judy Hardie 13th – Viper, Di and Harry Angus 20th – Buttercup, I McHugh, Paul Virgo, Sarah Lincoln, Meg Cairns and Bill Lincoln 21st – Kanooka, Luke Cromie and Warrick Sheppard 26th – Wildwood, Phillip and Jeanette Connard 30th – L’O, Thomas Ruether and Martin Aubree 34th – Gotcha, David Merenstein and Silke Weber Javelin Australian and South Pacific Championships 2010-11 3rd (4th South Pacs) – For Better or Worse, Peter Kemp and Will Sharp th
5 (7 South Pacs) – Razor, Peter and Lachlan Sharp 16th (18th South Pacs) – Happy Pants, Rod and Mickey Smith 17th (19th South Pacs) – Firefly, Michael and Ollie Looker Javelin State Championships 2010-11
GPS MARKS THE SPOT BYC greatly appreciates the support received from the Beaumaris branch of the Bendigo Bank over the past few years. This year we were successful in a grant application for new GPS units (and their associated brackets, power cables and cases) as well as new anemometers for both the Rescue Boats. This was a huge help for the Rescue Team as we now have BYC-owned equipment that is always on hand to assist with laying courses, performing starts etc. Thank you Bendigo Bank!
60 YEARS STRONG For those who may not be aware, BYC was founded in 1950 and season 2010-2011 is the 60th season of the club. Thank you to everyone who has been a part of our wonderful history and I hope to see everyone on the beach when we celebrate our 70th season!
1st – Razor, Peter and Lachlan Sharp 4th – Warren, Michael and Will Sharp 5th – Happy Pants, Rod and Mickey Smith 7th – Firefly, Michael and Ollie Looker I look forward to seeing everybody on the beach for the last few weeks of sailing; let’s make the most of the good weather before the cold wind, short days and damp conditions of winter set in! For those who are planning to do some work on their boats over winter I have a suggestion: get it done early. There is nothing worse than trying to finish the sanding, painting, refit, repairs, or replacements when the countdown to the 2011-12 Opening Regatta can be measured in days rather than months... I speak from experience! Will Sharp Rear Commodore.
MERCHANDISE The BYC merchandise range is still available! Currently the range is comprised of BYC stubby holders and BYC branded polo shirts in both a standard and a CoolDry style. Samples of sizes and styles are available. The range is easily added to - if you have suggestions or questions please contact Will Sharp (contact details inside front cover).
URNING. It’s a part of sailing that is often neglected in the pursuit of sail trim, pointing, boat speed and balance. However it is easily as important as all of these aspects of sailing. Turns are any movement of the boat that results in a significant direction change, ie tacking, gybing and mark rounding. Good turn technique can win races, poor technique can cost them. In this Faster Sailing we’re going to discuss tacking. The aim through a tack is not just to turn the boat quickly but to turn the boat with as little lost speed and distance as possible. I will not endeavour to write a step-by-step list of what to do and how to do it here as this would change according to what type of boat you sail, eg. It could be a single-handed dinghy, a two handed dinghy, a skiff with a self-tacking jib, it may have a deep cockpit, it may have a shallow self-draining cockpit and so on. As you make your way through this article have a think about your tacking technique and see how you may be able to modify it to get that extra 1 or 2 percent out of the boat, the 1 or 2 percent that could see you win...
regain boat speed as quickly as possible. After the target speed is regained the skipper should then point up higher to where he or she normally would when sailing to windward. TIMING The best tacks happen when both crew know what’s happening, as its happening and what’s going to happen next. The easiest way of doing this is counting. As the tack is called by either skipper or crew one of them should audibly count through the tack to ensure everything happens at the same rate every time the boat tacks. For instance: skipper sees a knock coming, starts the count “Tacking in three... Two... One... Tacking now... One... Two... Three...Four” By doing this both crew can develop their technique and perform the same actions at the same time each and every time the boat tacks. BRINGING IT TOGETHER Combining these points we have a tack such as this: at “Three” the skipper should ease sheet and bear away a couple of degrees for additional boat speed, at “One” the skipper should begin deflection of the rudder to around 30 degrees to commence the turn with minimal loss of speed, at “Tacking now” the rudder should be in full deflection and the crew should be beginning to change sides, change sheets etc, between “One” and “Three” the skipper should be pointing a little lower as he or she was before entering the tack to regain speed as quickly as possible, at “Four” the skipper should point up again to the angle where he or she normally sails to windward.
RATE OF TURN Not many people consider it but if a boat is thrown into a tack too fast it can slow the boat far more than is necessary or perhaps even stop it if the boat speed was low when entering the tack. The idea is not to get the boat through the manoeuvre as quickly as possible but to guide the boat through in a controlled way that retains as much of the initial boat speed as possible. This means that a rudder deflection angle of 30 degrees is best for the initial turn and full deflection of 45 degrees is POINTS TO NOTE: only needed when the boat is head to wind. - All body movements for the tack should be completed with the time it takes the boat to This way the drag from a fully deflected rudder turn. Movements after the boat has comdoesn’t slow the boat more than necessary pleted the turn are wasting valuable seconds and rob the boat of speed before the turn is to power up even halfway through. Taking one or two seconds longer than the absolute minimum to - Changing hands on the tiller extension is not tack will also allow the crew to perform their part of the tack – sailing with the extension tasks in a controlled, accurate manner rather behind your back for a few seconds after the than just hurling their way through and sorting tack gives you faster, smoother, more conout the mess on the other side. trolled tacks. Change hands only when boat is back up to speed again and pointing high. BOAT SPEED Boat speed is the key to a fast, efficient tack. - The skipper MUST ALWAYS tack facing The best way to retain as much speed through forwards – facing aft means he or she loses a tack and lose as little ground as possible is to orientation and turns the boat too far, not actually gain extra speed just prior to the mafar enough, too slow or too fast and all crew noeuvre. Once the tack is called the skipper coordination, and speed, is lost. should bear away 2-3 degrees and ease the mainsheet slightly while the crew should ease Next time you’re out in your boat have a think the jibsheet out 20-30mm. This will increase about what actually happens when you tack. boat speed as the boat enters the tack and will Perhaps by modifying your technique slightly allow the boat to emerge on the other tack you might be able to tack with more speed and with a fraction more speed. As we all know, in consequently lose less time and distance comsailing, fractions matter. The skipper should pared with those who do not tack. Do this also be careful to point a little lower with the fifteen times in a race and the effect may be sheets eased slightly once through the tack to more than you imagine...
The Fastnet Race is a 608nm ocean race held every two years from Cowes in the UK, around Fastnet Rock south of Ireland and back to Plymouth in the UK.
The inaugural Fastnet Race had just seven starters. Jolie Brise took line honours in 6 days 14hrs 54mins. One boat made such slow progress that it was unable to make the finish line before the timekeepers went home.
Gale conditions contributed to significant problems on many of the boats with one sailor tragically lost at sea. This was also the start of a major change in British yacht design as they were completely outshone by the internationals.
Australian invasion! Syd Fisher’s maxi Ragamuffin takes line honours in a first (and only) win for Australia.
The biggest ever Fastnet fleet of 303 starters is hit by a massive storm in the Irish Sea, claiming the lives of 15 sailors. Many new regulations were introduced after this race including a 300 boat fleet limit and a raft of new safety measures.
Attention came from outside the sport when maxi Drum capsized after her experimental keel sheared off. Music star Simon Le Bon, co-owner and crewmember was trapped underneath for 20 minutes before being rescued by the Royal Navy.
Of the 271 starters, only 64 finished what turned out to be a very hard race. Many of the retirements occurred before the fleet even cleared the English Channel. ICAP Leopard set a new Fastnet Race record in a time of 1 day 20hrs 18mins at an average speed of 13.52kts.
LACHLAN SHARP reflects on lessons learnt, boats sunk and good times had by all VERY SUNDAY morning at 9am sharp
Beaumaris beach comes alive. Boats are dragged out; passersby’s groans are poorly stifled when conscripted into helping with the retrieval of the top rack boats, masts emerge from storage, swinging around in less experienced hands like an apocalyptic horseman’s scythe.
let’s just call him Bill Lincoln, cramped up during a gybe, resulting in a spectacular back bottle and some unfortunate photography that our delightful Editor managed to dig up. In other news, much to the disappointment of many, one of the old Anchor Marine training boats is to be retired from the training fleet. It was a tough decision. Coming in at just under a metric tonne, no one could ever figure out exactly where all that weight is, as it certainly isn’t involved in the structural integrity of the hull. My unbruised knee and a considerably cracked chine can attest to this.
But who are these brave souls who take to the water each week? Leading Beaumaris Yacht Club’s mission to bring sailing to the people is Paul Hardie. Paul has been the Club Coach for quite a few years now, and knows every trick in the book. But we don’t just toss He’s never met a landboats away willy nilly lubbn’ set of legs he at BYC, some new couldn’t make seaworbrave boat must rise to thy, and it doesn’t look the heights of replacas if he will any time ing such a well loved Les Sharp with the Adult Training staff and soon. Ian McHugh boat. But we were in the new Pacer brings enthusiasm and safe hands. Such a a level of commitment that is not to be mighty task could only be accepted by one missed. And then there is John Pulham, and man, and his name is Les Sharp, who has dothough he may not admit it, he can actually nated a newly hotted up Pacer to the BYC see the wind, knows where it hides, and knows training ranks. With a hull so sparkling, trainhow to get it. And there is some other young ees arrive 10 minutes early to get their hands whippersnapper hanging around too... But on on it. Les should have donated an asthma to more important puffer with this beauty; things. she will take your For various reasons, breath away. this has been a season And with shiny new to remember. What to boats like these, we do when under tow strongly encourage all from a Rescue Boat is a trainees to begin saillesson we hope never ing in the afternoon as has to be tested, but 3 often as possible, eiweeks into the course, ther with the trainers there we were! During or by themselves. a particularly stiff There is no substitute Lachlan Sharp and Bill Lincoln having northerly, a capsize swimming lessons on a Sunday afternoon for experiencing a man drill (a surprise drill, I sized course with told Nick and Paul Virgo, my foot getting proper starting sequences and (in theory) caught in a toe strap had nothing to do with fairer afternoon winds. What’s the worst that it!) a well aimed knee from the trainer put a could happen? With the season we have had, crack in the chine that went unnoticed. Until most of you have already experienced it. So the boat almost sank, that is. Towed ashore tell your wife to take herself to lunch with the we were, to find Ian dragging a near sunken in-laws, your husband to paint the windowboat from Beaumaris Bay with a cracked bow. frames, your boss where to stick it and the dog But handling averse conditions is what sailing to walk itself because at BYC we don’t want is all about, such as when an unnamed trainee, excuses, we want sailors!
S IS the case with many clubs around the country, BYC has had problems over the past seven seasons staffing our Rescue Boats. BYC has two 18ft powerboats used for Rescue and Race Management operations on Sundays however due to a drop in staffing levels we have only had one of the boats out most weeks. For one boat to perform all the necessary course laying (and moving), start sequences and safety duties is a big task. Having the second boat out makes the day a lot easier on the Rescue crews, Tower staff and sailors as everything flows smoothly and there is a greater capacity to move marks, attend capsizes and run additional races.
Members may have noticed that since Christmas there is often a Rescue Boat anchored inside the reef at lunchtime... Since late January BYC has run a training course for new Rescue Boat skippers on Sunday mornings. The course, run by Will Sharp, comprehensively trains people wishing to assist in afternoon racing in all aspects of Rescue and Race Management including high and low speed driving, course setting, performing starts, rescue operations, towing and so on. This will be supplemented by sending new skippers on the Yachting Australia Powerboat Handling Course and YA Safety Boat Course when appropriate. Welcome to Geoff and Chris Perkins, our two newest Rescue Boat skippers! Geoff and Chris have been in training since January and have also been assisting in the afternoon racing on occasion and are well on the way to becoming qualified Rescue Boat skippers. BYC’s vision is to have a highly trained, capable, professional Race Management team out every Sunday afternoon providing BYC sailors with the best standard of racing possible. So if you’re around the Club early in the morning or at lunchtime and see a couple of new faces make sure you stop and say hi. These guys are the reason we sailors are able to do what we do.
THOMAS RUETHER recounts a successful 2010-11 program teaching the next generation of sailors HIS SEASON we enjoyed a fantastic group of ten enthusiastic young sailors and it was with particular delight we welcomed back five trainees from the previous season. Thanks to our Commodore Bruce Fraser who drove the rubber duck on Sunday mornings that Holly, Owen, Floyd and Scott plus Cian as a new face were able to further advance their sailing skills to the Basic Skills 2 level.
At the same time and with the very much appreciated support from Chris Neyland and Phillip Connard I was able to teach Nicholas, James and Ryley to sail in a Minnow. Fortunately the preChristmas half of the season was a lot better weather wise than what we had to put up with last season so that we were able to get through all the basic techniques including tacking and gybing (however the gybing is still unguided on the mainsheet). But there is no season with some weather which is blowing you away, literally - I’m sure most of the juniors now know the difference between being keen while on the
beach and somewhat scared in a Minnow on the water! These conditions also made sailing impossible at the Junior Live-In sleepover but nevertheless we all had fun with a BBQ, bowling (which also saw a group of fathers having a go!) and a movie. Everybody was a bit too excited obviously because we didn’t get much sleep and I couldn’t believe my ears at 6:30 am sending me all this whispering noises and talk about breakfast and another movie. There was only one young person who disappeared in the middle of the night, missing a cosy bed at home very badly. All in all we have seen some very fine sailing and I’d like to thank the parents for their tremendous help on the beach as well as in the sometimes chilly water – we couldn’t run the show without their support. Finally, congratulations to everyone for completing the course Yachting Australia sailing certificates will be handed out later in the season. I’m looking forward to another good one next season!
Overcast and damp - as any sailor knows, the wind is the only part of the weather that matters!
Congratulations Junior Course 2010-11!
IAN MCHUGH transitions the famed Mid Life Crisis and emerges a better man... Or does he? EVERAL YEARS ago, after an age of suffering from the many impoverishments of raising children, it suddenly dawned on me that some of the money I earned could actually be spent on Avril and me. Typically (selfishly?), I was quickest with a wish-list, so purchased a Javelin from the Sharp boys and a motorcycle.
The motorcycle was a desire which had been thwarted as an 18 year old by my Dad’s illness. Five years later, to my utter disgust, spoilt baby brother arrived home with a flash motorcycle, partly paid for by Mum! It was too late for me; I was already trapped by the normal encumbrances of marriage, house and job. But it wasn’t all bad; I built Pacer 1728 from a kit in the garage in Bendigo while Avril was producing Alex, our eldest son. So my first motorbike arrived in my fifties. It was a smart sports Kawasaki 250 with a 35hp twin cylinder motor revving to 13,000 rpm and 6 gears. It was a technical jewel and it took
Avril and me to Tasmania for the Ulysses Rally. But for freeway travel it was uncomfortable, it had the power but only if you were in the right gear. My next, and current motorcycle, is a 650 V-twin sports Suzuki with 75hp and 5 gears. Lightweight, with oodles of power, irrespective of the gear selected. Blasting away from the lights accompanied by the thrilling beat of the V-twin is hoon heaven! Most fun up to about 80km/h. You can enjoy the simple pleasures of leaning through the curves, the slick gear changes and the eager response from the engine. Travelling to the city and parking on the footpath outside the selected shop is a smug joy. Over 80, not so much fun, it’s noisy (even $700 helmets require ear-plugs) and the wind makes long trips tiring. Pillion seats on modern sporting bikes are uninhabitable for the over 18’s, so you always travel solo. Leathers feel great, but you cook on the hot days. And while I’ve some great bikie mates, collectively, the average bikie is … dumb.
And so to the thrills of sailing. Sailing into the wind in a Pacer is aptly named a “beat”. In a Javelin you never “beat”, you skim across the surface. At speed with a good wind the Javelin is a joy. The surge as the spinnaker fills, the stability of the hull and the responsiveness to the tiller. The downsides; while the crew enjoys himself on the trapeze, the skipper cops all the water thrown off the bow, and when a gybe is required the sail area often overwhelms my limited skill. One Sunday afternoon I think we fell over twelve times. My excuse was that a doctor diagnosed shingles the next day. A spinnaker reach in a Pacer with a good wind is equally exhilarating although it feels more skittish, lacking the stability of the larger Javelin hull. The most exhilarating fun? Sailing a Javelin, followed by a Pacer, with a good crew and a fair wind. Plus, you don’t get hurt for your mistakes. My fellow sailors? A most intelligent, interesting and entertaining bunch!
Photo courtesy of Shane Baker Photography www.shanebaker.net
IVE DECADES ago a man had an idea. That man was John Spencer and his idea was for a new class of 14ft skiff called the Javelin. That man was also a Kiwi but we can forgive him for that.
THE 1960’s (When paisley was “in” and aluminium was cutting edge...) Born in Australia, raised in New Zealand, John Spencer (1931-1996) was responsible for three of the most enduring skiff designs in the South Pacific; the Flying Ant, the Cherub and the Javelin. Spencer designed the Javelin in 1957-1958 as a class for those who had outgrown Cherubs which were fast gaining a reputation as a competitive, challenging boat for light, teenage crews. The original Javelin design was a mixture of the then-current Mk II Cherub and International 14. The first boats were built in 1960-1961. However, due to a lack of Association they were not registered until 1962. The Javelin Class comprised mainly the top Cherub sailors and administrators, essentially a who’s who of the Cherub class. Javelins grew strongly in New Zealand on the back of large-scale promotion in the popular sailing magazine Sea Spray. This was despite the stance of the New Zealand sailing authorities, primarily the Auckland Yacht and Motor Boat Association, that there should be no new centreboard classes allowed in order to retain the focus on the preferred national classes, the P, Z, IA and X classes. Had it not been for the ongoing support of Sea Spray the Cherubs and the Javelins may have faded into history with little trace at that time.
During the early 80’s the Javelin began to look dated so in 1986 the Victorian Javelin Association formed a subcommittee tasked with developing an updated rig design. Bill Williams Jr and Wayne Jelly devised a new set of rules which would produce a very efficient, highaspect rig. A suit of sails conforming to the experimental rules was purchased by the Association for testing at Chelsea Yacht Club at the end of 1986. The sails were trialled on a number of Victorian boats prior to being sent over to Western Australia to be evaluated by the Perth fleets. The new measurement rules were voted in at a general meeting of the Australian and New Zealand members during the 1990-91 Australian and South Pacific Championships at Chelsea Yacht Club. Unfortunately the late eighties saw the decline of the Javelin fleet in New South Wales. The final Australian Championships to be held in New South Wales was hosted by Toronto Amateur Sailing Club on Lake Macquarie over Christmas-New Year 1987-88 with only a very small number of local boats competing. The drop in Javelin numbers in New South Wales was mainly as a result of many Javelin sailors moving into the International 505, a class that was attracting highly successful sailors and was supported by a local boat builder. The 1992 victory of Lake Macquarie locals Chris and Darren Nicholson in the 505 World Championships virtually sealed the fate of the Javelin in New South Wales. During the 80’s not many new boats were built. Aside from a couple of one-offs and a pair of sister boats built from a mould by Phil Cameron (Mojo – now named Firefly and Houdini, now named Shake, Rattle and Roll, both of which are still sailing) Javelins were an ageing fleet.
(Big hair, tight pants and the coolest sideburns ever)
(Let’s be honest – did much cool or enduring come out of this decade? I think not)
An early development for the Javelin in the 70’s was the raised foredeck – a feature which became iconic for many years. The main reason for this feature was that the height of the mast used to be measured from the deck rather than the sheer line – so by raising the level of the deck sailors were able to use longer masts and taller rigs. Not only did this have the benefit of accessing the less turbulent air it also provided some muchneeded room inside the cockpit.
In the early 90’s Windrush Yachts entered the scene as the first professional builder producing high-quality boats from a female mould. These boats were reasonably full in the bow as they were designed for a symmetrical parachute spinnaker. The first boat out of the Windrush mould was Emotional Rescue with a self draining cockpit. Subsequent boats were mainly full cockpit design. The Windrush hull is still a highly competitive shape. In 2006 Emotional Rescue was sold and underwent an extensive rebuild by new owners Aaron Hirst and Paul Newman – essentially only retaining the hull shape and cockpit floor. The boat hit the water in the 2006-07 season with a brand new rig, self tacking jib (the first on an Australian Javelin) under the name Warren. Warren went on to win the 2006-07 Australian and South Pacific Championships less than six months after being rebuilt.
Prior to 1976 Javelins were all constructed from ply. This proved to be a relatively inexpensive and easily repaired method of construction that returned a very light, strong boat (when constructed well!). Notable timber boats from the early days were Magic Missile (built by Bill Vaughn) and two time National Champion Blue Spectre (built by Ivan Sutcliffe). The first Association mould was taken from Geoff Bail’s Lindy Lou in 1976. In the early days these association boats were single skin GRP shells with foam stringers which were then finished with ply frames and decks. This being the bad old days before foam sandwich construction became widely used, there were a few issues with these early hulls such as longitudinal “speed bumps” in the hull skin due to differential curing of the fibreglass around the foam stringers.
THE 1980’s (Travolta... What more needs to be said?) In 1980 a male mould was developed at Lake Macquarie in New South Wales. Although this was the first of the true foam sandwich hulls (though still finished with timber frames and decks) only a small number of boats were ever produced from this mould and none are sailing today.
The other hull shape path in the 90’s was Greg Brooks’ Tabasco built in 1992, which began moving down the path of finer bows and flatter undersides – essentially a more “skiff-like” shape. Tabasco lead to the development and 2000 construction of Brett Williams’ Unzipped which was the first boat designed primarily to be used with an asymmetric spinnaker and the high levels of lift an asymmetric provides downwind compared with a symmetric parachute spinnaker. Unzipped developed the Tabasco shape even more by having an even finer entry, very flat undersides with little rocker and a false floor with self draining cockpit. This boat was also built with a very light foredeck which was designed from the beginning to be easy to remove when the rules regarding foredecks inevitably changed. Unzipped’s design paid off. Warren Smith and Brett Williams went on to win the 2003-04 Australian Championships – mainly due to their superior downwind speed.
Marine began developing a new shape that built on the lessons learnt from Tabasco and Unzipped, taking the Unzipped shape, returning some shape to the undersides, making it a bit fuller in the midsections and fining out the entry even more resulting in a very fast shape. Seven boats were produced from this mould including Liquor Box which went on to win the Nationals in both 2008-09 and 2009-10.
In 1997 experiments with asymmetric spinnakers started at Chelsea Yacht Club. Tabasco, then owned by Soren Toft, was converted to use a fixed pole and became the test bed for the new spinnaker design. The original asymmetric spinnaker was a smaller sail set at the original halyard height. It was decided soon after to move the halyard position up the mast to allow use of a bigger, more powerful sail. The new rules regarding asymmetric spinnakers were introduced in the 1998-99 season and asymmetrics were used for the first time at the 1998-99 South Pacific Championships. This was a revolutionary shift for the Javelin – conventional double luff parachute spinnakers were the norm on almost every sailing boat at that time so the move to using a fixed pole with a single luff asymmetric spinnaker required a significant change in thinking regarding downwind race tactics and the quest for speed. No longer were the races comprised of tactical upwind sailing followed by a drag race to the bottom mark. With the introduction of asymmetric spinnakers and apparent wind sailing suddenly huge gains (and losses) were also possible going downwind.
THE 2000’s (Carbon fibre usage becomes widespread... Gotta love it!) Carbon fibre has become more and more widely used in skiffs of all types due to its superior strength to weight properties when compared with aluminium and fibreglass. Javelins have been no exception to this. Beginning in the early 00’s as a scattering of black among the aluminium masts, Carbon very quickly became the norm. From there flowed the usual development – carbon booms, spinnaker poles, foils, rudderboxes, hulls, tillers and fittings. After some interesting experimentation, carbon fibre has proved to be a reliable, repairable, reasonably easy and exceedingly strong material to work with. Indeed, there are currently murmurings from across the Tasman Sea about developing carbon fibre stays... As all this development was occurring in Australia, Javelin sailors ‘across the ditch’ were beginning to think about a new hull shape designed specifically for the new asymmetric spinnaker sailplan. In 2000 David Lee was completing his PhD in Engineering at Auckland University. Using his engineering skills and access to the university’s CAD software he wrote a program which analysed the measurements of over eighty different potential Javelin designs and
determined a shape which hypothetically presented the least drag within the class rules. This design which became known as the Lee Mk I. The New Zealand Javelin Association then had female moulds made to the Lee Mk I design which were (and are) available to Javelin sailors to build their own boats or by a professional.
In 2009 Kelly Marine went out of business. The moulds stayed in Melbourne for several months before being bought by Complete Composites in Western Australia. With some minor modifications to the moulds such as an integrated mast gate and an elliptical rear bar, a brand new boat emerged at the 2010-11 Australian and South Pacific Championships at McCrae Yacht Club – Chris “Wedgie” Woodward’s Racing Red. Less than three months after being launched, Russell Hanrahan and Wedgie shot to third in the South Pacifics and second in the Nationals.
The Lee Mk I was a very successful shape in New Zealand however the Australians who ordered boats experienced some quality issues when the boats arrived in Australia. Unfortunately the few cases of poor quality boats tarred the image of the Lee Mk I in Australia leading to a very low purchase rate among Australian sailors. However this did not detract from the performance of the Lee Mk I shape as the current 2010-11 Australian and South Pacific Javelin Champion is Brian Hennessey’s Fat Boys, a Lee Mk I boat.
The Javelins are a strong, competitive class with a relaxed atmosphere providing a great environment for both those sailors at the sharp end of the fleet as well as those who haven’t been sailing for as long as others. There are several competitive used boats on the market going for between $5,000 to $13,000 with brand new complete boats available from Complete Composites for around $20,000. Compare this with even second hand prices of other skiff classes and it is a lot of boat for the money!
In 2003 the rule requiring Javelins to have convex foredecks was removed from the class rules allowing sailors to begin experimenting with different shape and sized foredecks or no foredeck at all. The removal of the convex foredeck requirement made it possible for the first time to actively explore the possibility of fitting self tacking jibs (some experiments had happened in New Zealand with self tackers mounted on convex foredecks however the size restrictions imposed by the track mounted high up on a foredeck resulted in a considerable loss of sail area from the jib).
Australian Javelins sail at Beaumaris Yacht Club, Chelsea Yacht Club, Williamstown Sailing Club, Elwood Sailing Club and Cairn Curran Sailing Club in Victoria, Perth Dinghy Sailing Club, Bunbury Sailing Club and Esperance Sailing Club in Western Australia and Cleveland Yacht Club in Queensland. Javelins sail throughout New Zealand with the main centres for Javelins being Auckland, Tauranga, Napier, Gisborne, Wellington and Otago.
Three years on from the deck rule change the newly rebuilt Warren and several New Zealand boats competed at the 2006-07 Australian and South Pacific Championships at Chelsea Yacht Club using self tacking jibs. Warren went on to win the Championships that year – resulting in many boats emerging at the beginning of the next season with newly-installed self tacking systems. In 2007 there was a new builder in town. Kelly
So if you are in the market for a skiff but don’t want to pay 30-odd thousand for an International 14 or 49er, get lonely sailing by yourself on a Musto or a Moth, feel a bit too big for a Cherub or a 29er then grab a mate, get your hands on a Jav and get ready for some fun! Will Sharp. Thank you to Bill Williams, Peter Sharp and Brett Williams for assisting with this article. CONTACTS: VIC: Colin Williams (President) firstname.lastname@example.org
Paul and Judy Hardie sailing the Pacer Pursuit at the Pacer State Championships at BYC in March 2010. (Old rig pictured)
FTER SAILING Pacers for many years it became obvious to me that the class could do with a bit more sail to make sailing a bit more exciting. A lot of people were leaving Pacers because of this, and the class has taken on a training boat image in some areas. The pacer hull is a really good design; it is really stable and can easily take a lot more sail.
As the Pursuit was already a class in the 70â€™s (not a very successful boat) I thought it was time to re-visit the concept and modernise it. The single luff asymmetric spinnakers of the modern skiffs are so much better than the old parachute spinnakers, and much easier to handle, and Mylar fully battened working sails were the way to go. I first thought, to make the boat successful I should make it affordable, so I tried to do a rig using the same mast as the Pacer gaining the extra area from a big roach on the main, and the biggest jib I could fit with the same sheeting position. The mast needed spreaders and a different spinnaker set up, but that was all. I drilled a hole in the bow of the boat, and set up the retractable pole the same as most skiffs. The boat worked brilliantly, especially off the wind, and upwind it was just a little faster than a regular Pacer. I then added a trapeze, as everyone when they saw the boat said it had to have one. I
sailed the boat as often as I could and lent it to as many that would try it in an attempt to get as much feedback as I could. After the State Championships in which Paul and Judy Hardie sailed it, I finally came to the conclusion that it needed more sail to use the trapeze effectively and to be significantly faster than the regular Pacer upwind. A longer mast was needed, so I made it 400mm longer, so people who didn`t want to buy a new mast could sleeve their old one. I ordered a new set of sails 400mm longer in the luff and the spinnaker longer in the foot as well to give it a bit more power off the wind. The result is that the boat now is much faster than the regular Pacer upwind and amazingly quick downwind. It is really stable, forgiving, and easy to sail. The Pacer Association has been with me all the way and is keen to have the Pursuit as a separate class, with its own rules. There will be four Pacer Pursuits on the water before Christmas, and many more next year! Jim French. Jim French is a highly regarded boatbuilder in Moorabbin who has been building Pacers since 1997. More information on the Pacer Pursuit can be found at www.pacersailing.org.au.
FEET Overall length of an 18 including fixed spinnaker pole
FEET Height above shear line of the No.1 rig mast on an 18
KILOGRAMS Minimum weight of ready-to-sail 18 with No.1 rig setup
Note: for the purposes of this section the specifications of the “International 18” one-design boat have been used as opposed to the arguably
LUKE CROMIE shares the adventures of Team BYC at the Pacer State Championships over the Labour Day weekend 2011
HE 2011 Victorian Pacer State Champion-
Rock, McCrae, Safety Beach, Altona, Parkdale and of course Beaumaris Yacht Club.
ships were held over the Labour Day weekend at the picturesque Williamstown Sailing Club. There were 34 boats (and 2 Pacer Pursuits) competing over the three days with a strong delegation of 7 boats representing Beaumaris Yacht Club.
Sunday’s racing schedule included two long course races: one in the morning and a second in the afternoon if the forecast cold front didn’t hit with too much force. The morning’s race conditions were perfect, with 10-15 knots of steady breeze from the north.
Saturday morning involved registration and included a few last minute boat repairs to David Merenstein’s newly acquired Pacer, ably assisted by Silke Weber. Following a briefing session after lunch everyone was ready to race provided they could survive the infamous boat launching facilities.
Competition was strong in the first race with many in the hunt for a coveted long course
grip and did a spectacular backflip (in pike position we were later informed) over the side of the boat and was left in the drink as Thomas powered ahead. Thomas quickly returned and collected Martin and they went on in fine form to pick-up a few places and complete the race. With the sense that the weather was about to change for the worse we finished our lunch and headed out for the second long course race on Sunday afternoon. As boats were jostling for position on the start line the wind suddenly swung to the south-west with a vengeance – the Fawkner Beacon later showed winds of about 30 knots with gusts approaching 35 knots. The race was immediately abandoned and the Pacers battled home into a headwind without incident proving their seaworthy design.
The humble four wheel beach trolleys, that all Beaumaris Pacer sailors gleefully drag up the beach each Sunday, were a little out of place at Williamstown where a series of floating pontoons allow for launching into deep water. Fortunately, no one came to grief and we were away for two short course races in perfect sailing conditions of 10-15 knots from the The team from BYC: (L-R) Phillip and Jeanette Connard, Luke Cromie, north.
Monday arrived and there were many stiff and sore bodies around the Club, but there were still two short course races to decide the championship. In a good 10 knot breeze from the southeast conditions were perfect Warrick Sheppard, Thomas Ruether, Judy and Paul Hardie, Silke We- for a final tilt at Pacer glory. Phil and Jeanette Connard in The competition was very ber, Martin Aubree and David Merenstein. Absent: Ian McHugh strong but Paul and Judie (currently setting Land Speed Record to arrive before the first race...) Wildwood sailed well as did Thomas and Martin in L’O. Ian Hardie in Limelight managed a top 10 finish in the second race, which set victory. In a very classy performance Di An- McHugh with new trainee, Bill Lincoln, was th them up well for the remainder of the week- gus and Harry Jacobs managed a 5 place. I also in the mix. Over the weekend Ian also end. Ian McHugh with new trainee, Paul have no doubt that Warrick Sheppard and I sailed with Paul Virgo, Sarah Lincoln and Virgo, managed 16th place, which was re- would have been right behind Di for a top Meg Cairns and I think his selfless dedication th markable given Ian’s late arrival: I’m sure we five finish (ok, maybe a 25 …) if we didn’t in getting the trainees out for a taste of racall saw Buttercup on its trailer flying across need to alter course to avoid a rather large ing should be applauded. Hopefully there the Westgate Bridge as the starter’s siren ship refuelling barge that decided to traverse are a few Pacer champions on the way up. went - not sure how you made it in time Ian, our course heading for the bottom mark. After a BBQ and a few war stories on Monbut well done! The breeze became gusty towards the end of day afternoon there was a presentation to Saturday night involved a big gathering of the first long course race creating challeng- the 2011 Victorian Pacer Champions: Simon Pacer diehards and their families for pizza ing conditions as Thomas Ruether and Mar- Merritt and Jessica Vincent of McCrae Yacht and some tales of past adventures and a tin Aubree could attest. As they were ap- Club. A great weekend was had by all in this catch-up on the sailing scene around the proaching the top mark a freak gust heeled well organised and friendly event that bay. In total, seven clubs were represented their Pacer L’O on its ear. With the windward showed the Pacer class is still going strong. over the weekend: Williamstown, Black gunwale about 4ft in the air, Martin lost his
SQUARE FEET Average sail area of an 18 (actual sail area is unrestricted but limited by rules on length of spars)
MINUTES Total elapsed time for 18ft skiff AAMI IV (sailed by Peter Louden, Peter Warner and Julian Bethwaite) to sail the Sydney No.1 “Around the Islands” course (15.4nm buoy to buoy) in 1991 with an average speed of 18.5kts (closer to 22kts when considering the true distance sailed) in 20-22kts of wind. 20 years later the record still stands.
faster and more advanced development B18 design which tend to have slightly more sail area and speed and are regarded as the pinnacle of skiff sailing.
STEPHEN WHITESIDE on the trials, tribulations and extensive and continuous maintenance involved in sailing skiffs...
T KEEPS you on your toes sailing a Javelin, I tell you! Thomas and I were rigging the boat recently, and the mast track started to crack and split as we were threading the mainsail through. This was the third time. The first two splits had been at the top and the bottom of the mast. They had been patched. This was in the middle, though. Looked like we were heading for a new track. Thomas taped the whole thing up as best he could, and we decided to press on. It was a good breeze, and we didn’t want to miss it.
It was a brisk northerly, in fact. Time was a little against us, and the starting line was a fair way downwind. As we passed over the reef, I jerked the tiller towards me to bear away, forgetting that I was sailing a Javelin, not a Pacer. They’re not so forgiving. We capsized. We hadn’t put the centre board down yet, so had to push it through the casing first before we could pull the boat up. Meanwhile we were being blown closer and closer to the reef. As the boat finally came up again, we discovered to our dismay that the boom had come off the mast at the goose-neck. There was a reason for this. We often need to throw a tack or two after leaving the beach, before crossing the reef. We can’t put the centre board down at this stage, as it interferes with the boom vang, making tacking impossible. So Thomas has rigged a clip to the vang, and doesn’t attach it until we are well past the reef, and able to lower the board. On this occasion, the vang had not yet been attached, and there was nothing to hold the boom onto the mast! We capsized the boat again to put the boom back on. This time, the boat wouldn’t come up again. The hull was in shallow water, on the rocks, but the top of the mast was in deep water, and it had plunged to the bottom. Thomas swam out to the top of the mast to pull
it up, and then had to race quickly back along the mast to prevent the boom coming off again as the boat came up! All well. We finally came up very close to the rocks, and had to throw a quick tack to avoid complete disaster! We missed the start, and started to bumble our way through the first beat. Halfway to the mark, we noticed the mainsail was coming out of the track again. I was keen to head straight back to shore, but Thomas reckoned it was good for one spinnaker run. I deferred to his better judgement (?). We eventually rounded the buoy, put up the spinnaker and had a great ride. During the gibe, however, the tiller extension pulled off the tiller! That was the end of our race. We limped slowly home, capsizing again immediately before crossing the reef, just for good measure. Again, we were nearly blown onto the reef in the time it took to get the boat back up again. During the week, I took the boat down to the boat repairer, who replaced the mainsail track and the tiller extension, although the latter looked a bit long. He also replaced the venturi, which was leaking badly. Two weeks later, we rigged the boat again. The mainsail slipped onto the mast beautifully, but the tiller extension was clearly going to struggle to clear the mainsheet during tacking and gybing, so we moved the mainsheet block further along the boom. Once we were out on the water, all went well. The clip on the boom vang extends it length, though, and causes our leech to sag a bit. We’re going to have to find a way around that. Back on the beach after the race, I removed the mainsail to find the track peeling away from the mast at the top! So this week, it was back to the boat repairer again, for the track to be reattached. I’ll also ask him to take 300 mm off the tiller extension. Sailing a Javelin, it keep you on your toes!
Life aboard the Independent Endeavour in the 2010 Melbourne to Hobart
S TOLD by Peter Banham from aboard the 35 tonne, Independent Endeavour, who competed in the 2010 Boxing Day Dash and then the Eastcoaster race to Hobart. "Already three weeks have passed since we departed Sandringham Yacht Club on the Swan 65 Ketch Independent Endeavour. The idea was to compete in both the Boxing Day Bash, Port Melbourne to Blairgowrie and then the M2HE over the next few days. With plenty of souls onboard for the Dash, we depart at 8.30 to make the 10.30 start adjacent to Station Pier. Dead South winds mean tacking all the way and the 33 knots across the deck in the middle of the Bay is a good test for our gear. 44 nautical miles later, at an average of 6.8 knots, we arrive to great activity and excitement as we berth alongside the pier, behind the start boat, which is the Tall Ship, Enterprize." "A few last minute drop outs are announced and we are now down to just nine crew for the big race. Looks like even the skipper will need to work on this voyage." "Day dawns and there is still much to do, as we learn that our Navigator, arriving on the red eye from Perth, is going to be late. A hearty breakfast and late departure into grey skies and 20 knots of Sou'westerly breeze gets us to the
Portsea start line just in time to show off at the jetty and then manipulate this large, heavy boat amongst the three fleets racing to Tasmania. There’s the Melbourne to Launceston, Melbourne to Hobart East and Melbourne to Hobart West, all in all it's 44 yachts plus the spectators. It’s great to know that some of my fellow Mordialloc Motor Yacht Club members are somewhere amongst the crowd and that Gerry is sailing fast on the 44ft catamaran, Out To Lunch." "The start sounds from the canons on Enterprize and off we go reaching to the turning mark off Shortland Bluff, where we turn SSE and face a 25 knot wind dead on from the Rip. A still ebbing tide gives us the dreaded tide against wind scenario and scarily steep waves. Our biggest challenge is that we will need to tack across the Heads; we can’t get out otherwise. All but the best boats needed to do the same. We’re hammered by the huge, steep seas of about 4 metres in height, with a gap much the same to the next one. The grand old girl struggled to push her 35 tonnes over the top of the wave and maintain enough momentum to do the same immediately with the next." "Somewhere near Corsair Rock we need to tack, there’s no other choice. As we tack a massive wave stops the boat. I know we’ve stopped, as I can see as we winch in
ther 55nm ahead. At this time and just as I was going for a rest, a high water bilge alarm sounds and a mad scramble lifting floor boards proves that, yes indeed there is much water in the bilge (still doing 9 knots though), yes the automatic bilge pumps aren’t automatic, no they won’t turn on manually either … and yes, no rest. It’s on to the manual pumps for about an hour. The leak is tracked back to the anchor well, where water is washing down the pipe and finding its way into the bilge. So on we go." "175nm later at 6.00am we are at Deal Island, having achieved a very respectable average of 9.7 knots, but now the wind is fading fast and many of the lighter boats we passed overnight are now making ground on us. Time to add the Mizzen Staysail to the wardrobe, which increase our now 5 knots to a healthier 5.6knots or thereabouts." "Another 40nm and we are at the North end of Flinders Island, where we make a tactical blunder and cut to close to Outer Sister Island. The current is running against us at 5 knots and slows our sped to 1.8 knots for 30 minutes, which costs us some ground. Once clear and the wind now kindly taking a Northerly aspect, it’s time to hoist the No.2 spinnaker. What a merry sight we must have made and we increased our speed from 5 to 7 knots. The sun came out and we enjoyed our first happy hour to celebrate our 170nm covered in the first 24 hours, at an overall average of 7 knots. Pushed hard, the boat is capable of 200nm in 24 hours. We continued with the spinnaker for the entire night. We sailed slowly down Finders Island and Cape Barren Island coasts, with daylight dawning and Tasmania alongside."
Photo courtesy of Steb Fisher Photography www.steb.com.au
'The spinnaker comes down sometime around midday, as the wind starts to move back to the South, the predicted cold front arrives. By nightfall, we are half way down the coast and the wind is now back to 25 -30 knots on the nose, but our angle and distance from shore,
plus a bit if east in the wind, means we don’t need to tack during the night. It’s a rough ride and down below it feels like going out of Mordialloc Creek in a 25 knot sea breeze. Finally, whilst in my bunk, there is a need to tack, causing me much discomfort, as I had previously been on the comfortable tack." "We chase the Tasman Island Light, which sits miles high on the big rock and at dawn we our rounding the corner with a deceptively long 20nm still left to Storm Bay. The Tasman Sea has some big waves to throw at us and enough wind for us to put some furls in the big No 1 headsail we had been carrying since early on day two. Nevertheless, there is some excitement as our goal of finishing the race inside three days is now a possibility." "At the entrance to Storm Bay the wind slows, slows and slows. Our 1.5 knot speed is not helping us reach our target, but there is nothing to do but get the as much out of the boat as is possible. The Spinnaker helps and so three days, three and half hours after the start, having covered 510nm at an average of 6.8 knots, we cross the line - spinnaker up and doing 10 knots in a massive gust, just to show-off!" "Well. That’s the story. Much celebration was had and some of the crew looked a lot worse next morning than at any a stage of the voyage. This is called „land sickness'. I wasn’t „landsick’, as a jet plane was waiting to take me back home to Melbourne, pick up Gerry and Moondancer and make our way for the next adventure on the Gippsland Lakes." "Next for Indy – Melbourne to King Island on the Labour Day weekend from March 12, 2011."
Thanks to Peter Lesic for supplying this article , Peter Banham for allowing us to publish it and Steb Fisher for supplying the main photograph.
hard on the headsail, that there’s no water passing by us. With the wind blowing hard, but otherwise total silence from held breathes, Independent Endeavour slowly, but powerfully, picks up speed and we pound our way out to sea with the tactic of getting a lot of water between us and the beach; then on to a reach to Wilsons Promintory. That will suit us well." "A turn to the East, ease the sheets on the No2, Main, then Mizzen and we settle back to a delightful reach, where the steep seas have been exchanged with long rollers. Indy dips her bow and lifts sheets of water in the air to blow back over her decks. Mercifully the decks are so long, the water rarely reaches the crew: very civilised. Our official duty watches start; a rolling watch, where crew is exchanged two people at a time every four hours." "110nm later, Wilsons Prom is ahead, its midnight and we are averaging 9.2 knots. We spot the light on Rodondo Island, where we will change course a few degrees further East and keep reaching for Deal Island, which is a fur-
Offshore sailors.... Just got to be a little bit crazy! (who’s that bloke 5th from the left...?)
WANTED USED PACER AND MINNOW SAILS FOR THE BYC TRAINING FLEET. PAM SHARP and MIKE KENYON reflect on the season past ND SO another sailing season draws to a close. Up in the Tower, after the summer-that-wasn’t, a new talent has emerged. Now semi clairvoyant, the eyes in the sky can almost predict fleets. Simple, really. Our sailors come out in force with the sun but on grey days seem swayed by the sloth within who whispers of warmth and dry feet. Then they miss hot new go-fast tips gleaned while rigging, the latest confidential gossip, good conversation at lunch, and the post-race wrap-up of the day over dim-sims. Not to mention the opportunity to amass points towards some of the silverware soon to be distributed. Next season, can we please look forward to more of your company?
play soccer in the winter and sail in summer.
As for Pacers, a few years ago the fleet was much depleted when Javelins made their comeback. Now their numbers are increasing again and it is not unusual to have ten racing on a Sunday afternoon. Who knows how many there will be by the end of next season, when hopefully more of our new sailors have taken that leap into their own boats? David Merenstein is the latest to do so and there was a little quiver of excitement in the tower when Gotcha was seen arriving on the beach and it was realized that she was not just visiting but had come to stay. And will we acquire any new wooden Pacers? The Association has given We also have a new way of appreciating its blessing to plans, Jim French has drawn them up – says the building is much easier wind strength than it used to be without techno- and they are logical assistance. available from When the sailApril. boarders come out in force beThe scuba divers fore lunch – as are still around happened one on Sunday mornexceedingly brisk ings, still without morning – no flags and still do sensible sailor of not seem to una conventional derstand the boat is likely to reason for our want to put to reef markers. sea. Perhaps some sixth sense tells One of the best sights to be seen from the tower is two them when to get out of the way, espeRescue Boats parked near water’s edge cially when the training boats return to ready for launching. Thanks to volunteers shore. Their playground of choice extends who responded to our Commodore’s invi- from the reef point south of the Club along tation in the local paper some weeks ago to and between the markers so if you are this has been possible on a number of oc- retiring solo, please keep watch. And on casions. Welcome to the Club, all of you. the subject of the markers, all season we We hope you will have a long and happy have been hoping Parks Victoria would rein association with us. A warm welcome too, in their floaters – which we are not permitto new sailing members and trainees who ted to touch – so no mistake could possibly have joined us since the last issue of The be made as to the reef passage. Apparently they have been waiting for good Reef. weather. Perhaps next season? Speaking of trainees, congratulations to the three Minnow skippers who sailed so well 1 May is the last day of sailing at BYC for on their first outing beyond the reef. Con- the 2010-2011 season, but that doesn’t ditions could not have been better and it mean you can all then look forward to five months of hibernation. It’s sandpaper, was a pleasure to watch you. paint and varnish time, with presentation On to trainees of the future. Not only has and the Annual General Meeting and PresRuben Sharp been introduced to a Javelin, entation on July 24 to look forward to, just a week or so later Ethan Molina and working bees and displays to help with and Jack Lesic were seen vying for positions in a before you know it you’ll be back, looking Pacer. Now they have been for their very for the sign-on sheet! Enjoy those first sail – inside the reef – and their fasnatched idle moments while you can! thers’ report a good time was had by all. Word has it that in time to come they will Pam and Mike.
MAINSAILS, JIBS AND SPINNAKERS. ALL ENQUIRIES CONTACT PAUL HARDIE 9583 3363
FOR SALE JAVELIN 385 SILLY MOO Windrush hull - carbon layup Windrush carbon mast with spare tip and 49er sail track CST carbon boom Two jibs - one is only one season old (Thompson) Two Thompson spinnakers One Halsey Lidgard main Fully adjustable rig Aluminium beach trolley $8,000 ONO Contact Peter Sharp 9878 1997
FOR SALE JAVELIN 375 FOR BETTER OR WORSE Current Victorian Champ, 3rd in 2010-2011 Nationals Completely rebuilt by Paul Newman with latest deck layout, self tacker, false floor & carbon components Foam sandwich with kevlar layup Minimum weight Jason King foils CST boom, 2 CST masts, one only 2 years old with dyform rigging Almost new mainsail Beach trolley and trailer $13,000 Contact Peter Kemp 0409 805 446