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12 March 2004, 01:22 pm
Southern Star II Leads With Two Bullets
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Farr 40 Australian National Championship
Pittwater

After a one hour delay, sailing finally got underway today. Sailing in the Barrenjoey Circle off Palm Beach at Pittwater the fluky 10 knot Nor-Nor 'East breeze definitely had the 10 boat fleet on their toes.
Race one had Richard PERINI, winner of last weeks Joico regatta, start at the boat end while defending National Champion, Marcus BLACKMORE and Rob SKINNER took the pin end option. These two boats managed to lock Matt ALLEN, steering Southern Star II for John CALVERT-JONES, out at the pin end forcing Allen to tack across the back of the fleet and to the right side of the course.

This start line incident ended up working to Southern Star's advantage when they rounded the top mark in first place head of Skinner and Steve O'ROURKE on Panther. Allen sailed well to maintain the lead and finish over the line in first, with Skinner over in second and Perini four seconds later in third. Skinner kept the pressure on Allen all the way around the track and never lost his second position.

The second race had the breeze swinging to the North and building in pressure. Skinner was a little early on the start and had an individual recall while Allen and Lang WALKER went for the pin end of the start line. Neville CRICHTON on Shockwave and Perini started mid line and Crichton took the left hand side of the course for the first upwind leg. Crichton rounded the first mark in front of the fleet with Allen and Perini on his heals. This trio stayed in this sequence as they rounded the first bottom mark.

On the second upwind leg Steve ELLIS on Buon Giorno went right and this side paid the dividends when Ellis rounded in front with Dennis MCDONALD on One Step Ahead two seconds behind him followed by Skinner. Perini and Allen had a close call at the top mark, which shifted Allen back to sixth but the Southern Star II crew sailed well to regain the lead on the last downwind leg to take a second gun for the day closely followed by Ellis on Buon Giorno.

Shifty breezes had the race committee alter the course and race three was underway. Perini came out the blocks with pace at the boat end of the line. Crichton worked his way to the front to round ahead of Perini and these two sailed to the bottom mark to round in the same places.

On the second upwind leg Perini pulled Crichton back and Blackmore manoeuvred into second position at the second top mark. Perini took out race three with Crichton finishing in second and Allen a close third. The third, fourth and fifth boats all finished in one-second intervals, typical of the close one design racing finish.

Racing continues for the next two days with the Farr 40 National Champion and Australian Circuit point score winner being decided this weekend.

Results

Pos Boat R1 R2 R3 Total
1 Southern Star II (J.Calvert-Jones - RPAYC) 1 1 3 5
2 Corinthian Doors (R.Perini -RSYS) 3 5 1 9
3 Emotional Hooligan (M.Blackmore - RPAYC) 4 6 4 14
4 Team Shockwave (N.Crichton -CYCA) 10 3 2 15
5 Weapon (R.Skinner - CYCA) 2 7 6 15
6 MMA One Step Ahead (D. McDonald - CYCA) 7 4 7 18
7 Buon Giorno (S.Ellis -RPAYC) 8 2 10 20
8 Panther (S.O'Rourke - CYCA) 5 8 9 22
9 Kokomo (L.Walker - CYCA) 9 9 5 23
10 Rapscallion (D.Voorderhake - CYCA) 6 10 8 24
Sam Crichton (As Amended By ISAF News Editor)
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