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9 January 2003, 03:04 pm
American's Gain Second Victory as top Three Finish Within One Second
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© Peter Danby

JJ Giltnan 18 Foot Skiff Trophy
Sydney

Defending champion Howie Hamlin (USA) became the first Skipper to win two heats when he steered General Electric across the line today, by the narrowest of margins in Heat 5, the Computer Associates day.
In what must be the most memorable result in the 65 year history of the championship, General Electric took victory by just 1 sec from dead-heaters RMW Marine (Rob Greenhalgh, GBR) and Omega Smeg (Trevor Barnabas, AUS)

Fourth placing went to the early race leader Casio Seapathfinder (Michael Coxon, AUS) with Total Recall (Tony Hannan, AUS) fifth & Computer Associates (Anthony Young, AUS) sixth.

The race was sailed in a south wind and over the first lap of the course, Casio Seapathfinder showed the way around the first four rounding buoys.

Omega Smeg took the lead after the third windward leg and maintained a narrow advantage over General Electric on the spinnaker run down harbour.

The two skiffs were just seconds apart over the final two legs of the course while RMW Marine took advantage of the leaders battle to gain rapidly on the final windward leg to the finish.

The spectator ferry patrons were yelling encouragement as the 3 skiffs crossed the line together and opinion was divided as to the placings.

Total Recall's performance was just as amazing as the finish for the major placings. The skiff capsized at the start and was hopelessly out of contention. To finish fifth and only 1.20 secs behind the winner was a wonderful effort by the crew.

These results leave the ever consistant Greenhalgh at the top of the leaderboard, with the chasing pack led by Howie Hamlin, poised to leap on any mistake by the British team. A top six finish in either of the final two heats will see Rob take the title.


Top Ten Results (After 5 Races)

Position Boat Helm Nation Total Points
1 RMW Marine Robert Greenhalgh GBR 22
2 General Electric Howie Hamlin USA 34.7
3 Omega Smeg Trevor Barnabus AUS 36.7
4 Total Recall Tony Hannan AUS 39.4
5 Express Post Hugh Stoddart AUS 50
6 Aristocrat Gary Phillips AUS 59
7 Yandoo John Winning AUS 64
8 Computer Associates Anthony Young AUS 65.1
9 Casio Seapathfinder Mike Coxon AUS 79.7
10 ASKO Appliances David Lumb AUS 86
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