In the second pointscore race of the BMW Sydney Winter Series, crews were tested in a fresh west sou'wester that gusted over 20 knots at times, and according to CYCA Commodore John MESSENGER, this is what the series is all about.
'I saw some terrific boat handling when the bullets reached the 20 knot plus mark,'
the Commodore said this afternoon. 'These are the perfect conditions for this series because they allow crews to build on their skills for the summer offshore racing program which starts in less than three months.'
Laurence FREEDMAN'S Espresso Forte just pipped the Division A fleet with a 21 second win over David PESCUD'S KAZ and CYCA Rear Commodore Martin JAMES' Infinity III, which finished just four seconds behind KAZ.
The fresh conditions provided for some exciting moments amongst the big boat fleet including Sean LANGMAN'S 66-foot Xena striking some problems during a spinnaker drop on a fast downhill run.
In Division B, Colin WOODS' Pretty Fly II, which finished second in division last week, was this time too strong for Shane KEARNS' new Mumm 36 Komatsu A Few Good Men and Greg NEWTON'S regularly raced Antipodes.
In Division C, the biggest of the nine divisions for today's race, Alan KENDALL'S Talon convincingly relegated Larrikin Sydney 32 (Ross GLASSON & Richard HARPER) to second place and Very Tasty (Christopher Sligar) to third with a six-minute break over these two boats. Andrew STOECKEL'S Integrity sailed well to earn top points in Division D with Neil ROWLAND and Craig ARMOU'S French Bee finishing second and Richard LAVERS' Summersalt finishing third while Division E results saw Greg MAUGHAN'S Syonara post a two minute win over Robert HUNT'S Attitude and Grant POLLOCK'S L'Eau Commotion.
There was no question of Jagged Edge's win in Division F with more than six minutes between this boat, which was skippered by L. Ratner, and the second placed Breakfast (Peter ROBINSON). Keith SHEPPARD and Martin WALKER'S Slack Alice finished in third.
An equally strong performance in Division G saw Peter FALLON'S Gold Dust also finish six minutes ahead of its nearest rival, Vincent MUNRO'S Kirralaa and the third placed Devil's Advocate (Mark DONNELLEY and Andrew BARNES).
In the non-spinnaker Division J, getting around the course was a little easier but the competition was no less fierce with less than one minute separating the top three boats - Phillip DENISON'S Gusto, Peter PELLEGRINI'S Barnacle Bill and Bill MIROW'S Privateer, a veteran of this series.
In the newly formed Sydney 38 Division Team Lexus (Mayo, Henry, Miller) narrowly beat Commodore John MESSENGER and M. DELANEY'S Don't Blink.