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15 January 2011, 07:03 pm
Alfie Takes Dragon World Championship
2011 Dragon Worlds
Alfie Takes Dragon World Championship

International Dragon World Championship 2011
Melbourne, Australia

Lawrie Smith, Timothy Tavinor and Ossie Stewart won the 2011 Dragon World Championship today on Alfie.
Overnight leader Bunker Queen had a disastrous day finishing 25th in Race 6 and picked up second place with the Danish Corinthian crew on My-Way in third.

With only one race left in the championship racing got underway at 12:05 local time. The gybe set became very popular at the top mark and the Russian entry of Mikhail Mouratov on Murka 12 were the first to the mark followed by My Way and Karabos IX.

Returning to the bottom mark and most of the crews chose the left, with a few making a late decision to go in to the mark under shy spinnakers, making them very quick. There were some spinnaker issues as a result, but nothing of major consequences. First was still Murka 12 with My Way in second and Bunker Prince taking over third place.

My Way came in first for the second time around at the top and had gained a handy lead. Bunker Prince moved into second swapping places with Murka 12 in third. And the positions remained the same with My Way recording their second race win of the championship. Overall winner Alfie finished the race in seventh, well ahead of rival Bunker Queen, who did not have the best day finishing 25th.

My Way, skippered by Frank Berg took the Corinthian trophy for the first all-amateur crew. Frank said, "It's our best result in the Worlds ever." They had a bronze previously. "Our boat is from 1989 and the oldest fibreglass vessel in the fleet. I thought we had good speed in the last three races. We didn't do the Prince Philip Cup last week, but we would like to do the lead-in event in the future to get some improvements.

Taking out the overall win, by the narrowest of margins at around just a few metres, was the British crew aboard Alfie. Olympic medallist, Lawrie Smith, who has not been sailing since his last Volvo Ocean Race campaign in 1999, was happy to get a win in his comeback regatta. He said, "Four young kids took care of sailing for a while. The twins are now 13 years old, so it makes doing something like this possible. It really is such a joyous way to come back. I honestly did not think we would get the win. Then again, I also though it was going to blow 25 knots each day."

Tim Tavinor was also on board Alfie, "I'm exhausted is all I can say. It is my first Dragon Worlds win, too. Also first and second overall were brand new boats delivered directly to the regatta. We had a really great time here and the on-water team were very professional."

And the third member of the team Ossie Stewart added, "Tim's boat is fantastic. We put a few new ideas into it and they really seemed to work."

Follow all the 2011 Dragon World Championship news at: http://www.dragonworlds2011.com.au/

John Curnow (As Amended by ISAF)
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