Seve Jarvin and his crew of Sam Newton, Steve Jarvin and Graeme Sutherland, representing the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia have won the 2009 Australian Match Racing Championship today on Pittwater.
The ISAF Grade 3 event, hosted by the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club in conjunction with Yachting Australia, was a fitting finale for Jarvin (AUS) who last contested this event in 2005 where he finished second to three time winner Michael Dunstan
(AUS). This year, however, the positions were reversed and it was Jarvin who managed to get his hand on the trophy with a resounding victory of 3-1 in the best of five final.
The second match of the petit final saw David Chapman
fired up in the pre-start, he managed to take an early advantage leading off to the left hand side of the course and developed an early lead. At the top mark Chapman had opened up a 20 second lead and managed to stay in phase with the wind to develop a lengthy lead on the final downwind and take a convincing win by more than a minute.
With the scores level, both skippers went into a final match to decide the winner of the petit final. Chapman made an early error by being over at the start. Evan Walker
sailed a consistent and conservative race to keep Chapman from closing in and managed to seal the deal with a 10 second win to take third place with Chapman in fourth place overall.
Walker commented on his third place, "Feeling a little bit indifferent about it. Slightly disappointed, but it's where I expected to finish up. I can't be upset being beaten by those two guys [Jarvin and Dunstan], they're good competitors. It's making me hungrier for next year!"
In the first race of the major final both boats got off to an even start and had an aggressive tacking duel up the first beat. The boats came close again on the final downwind run with Dunstan almost rolling Jarvin after the top mark set. Jarvin managed to pick a good layline coming into the finish to take a half a boat length win.
In the second pre-start, Dunstan managed to get a penalty on Jarvin and also push him over the start line early. However Jarvin showed great speed and managed to pick a good left hand shift to take the first cross on the upwind leg. Towards the top, Jarvin established enough lead to undergo his penalty turn. On the final upwind leg, Jarvin separated from Dunstan and it was Dunstan now who found himself on the favoured side of a left hand wind shift and led around the top mark. He managed to hold his advantage to the finish.
In the third race, it was Jarvin this time who looked confident in the prestart. Jarvin got a penalty on Dunstan right as the gun went and the umpires signaled for Dunstan to undertake the penalty straight away leaving Jarvin to go to the favoured side of the course. Up the second beat, Dunstan managed to pick a few wind shifts to get him back within striking distance. It was yet another close downwind finish with Jarvin taking a two boat length win.
Match four and the pressure was on Dunstan to win this race to stay in with a chance to win the Championship, however he received an early penalty in the prestart for not completing his gybe. It was close at the top mark with Jarvin holding a narrow lead. Again Dunstan fought back but Jarvin sailed well to keep with his competitor and also stay in phase with the wind. On the final downwind run, Jarvin managed to extend his lead to take a comfortable win and thus taking the title of the 2009 Australian Match Racing Champion!
After the race Jarvin commented on his win. "It was a tricky day and it was hard to stay on top of the shifts, but the crew work was good and we managed to stay in phase with the breeze most of the time."
On race two Jarvin added, "We got a bit greedy, we thought the right was going to be good and we let Michael split left. When we tacked we looked good but sailed too much into his breeze".
"We learnt from our mistakes and in the last race managed to keep close with a tight cover over him as he still had a penalty to do. We kept the rest of the race safe and took the win and are stoked to have our name on the Cup" continued an elated Jarvin.
Jarvin who had father Steve (Mothy) on board, won this event 25 years ago and was happy for Seve and the team. "Not bad for an old bloke! It was tough work out there and plenty of yelling and shouting going on but am extremely pleased for Seve who hasn't match raced since this event four years ago."
All in all, a very successful match racing regatta with competitors, Race Officer Ted Anderson and his team of race officers and Chief Umpire Phil Mostyn and his team of umpires all doing a sterling job over a grueling four days of competition on Pittwater.
1. Seve Jarvin
2. Michael Dunstan
3. Evan Walker
4. David Chapman
5. Murray Gordon
6. William Mackenzie
7. Nicky Souter
8. Jason Waterhouse
9. Jordan Reece