Olympic sailors sign up

Tom Slingsby and others to join this weekend's Rolex Trophy One Design Series

Thursday December 11th 2008, Author: Jennifer Crooks, Location: United Kingdom
Three Olympians will add a touch of glamour to this weekend’s Rolex Trophy One Design Series which starts tomorrow when a fleet of six Farr 40s take to the waters off Sydney Heads in what is forecast to be a heavy air regatta.

Within the Rolex Trophy One Design fleet are three Australian Sailing Team members, all of whom competed at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games.

On board the Farr 40 Estate Master are Men's 470 Gold medallist Malcolm Page as trimmer and 49er skipper Nathan Outteridge calling the shots as tactician. It's a busy schedule for Page who, after the Rolex Trophy series finishes on Sunday will drive to Melbourne to line up next Tuesday with new skipper Mat Belcher for the 470 class at Sail Melbourne, the first event of the new World Cup Series.

Double world champion Laser sailor Tom Slingsby is tactician on the Farr 40 Transfusion which is currently leading the Australian Farr 40 pointscore.

“The Rolex Trophy is one of the peak events for our circuit,” said Slingsby today. “We’ve been out training for this event and we are using it as preparation for our 2009 Rolex Farr 40 Worlds campaign in Porto Cervo, Sardinia. We’ve been sailing with the same crew all season and we’ll take this crew to the Worlds next year.

“Our main rivals for the season so far have been Estate Master and Kokomo. Last event it came down to the last race to decide the winner and I’m sure this weekend will be no different.”.

The line-up of Farr 40s includes Chris Way’s Easy Tiger II, Martin & Lisa Hill’s Estate Master, Lang Walker’s Kokomo, Ivan Wheen’s Sputnik, Guido Belgiorno Nettis’ Transfusion and Brett Neill’s White Cloud.

CYCA Commodore Matt Allen will step back into the Farr 40 class for the second time in a month, sailing on Kokomo, a boat he previously owned, for its current owner Lang Walker. Last year Allen was the overall winner of the Farr 40 Rolex Trophy One Design Series.

The Farr 40 fleet will race up to four races each day of the Rolex Trophy One Design Series.

This weekend’s regatta is forecast to be a windy air affair with 15-20 knot northeasterly breezes increasing to 20–30 knots throughout Friday afternoon. Saturday’s forecast is for moderate north nor’westerly breezes in the morning, again increasing to 20-30 knots in the afternoon and Sunday, the final day of competition, will bring no respite with a 25-33 knot west sou’wester which is sure to rattle a few rigs.

A fleet of nine Sydney 38s will line up on Saturday and Sunday with the Farr 40s.

The Sydney 38 one design fleet will begin their competition on Saturday with The SubZero Goat using this weekend to prepare for her journey to Hobart starting on Boxing Day.

Bruce Foye, co-owner of The SubZero Goat will use the Rolex Trophy to ensure all members of the crew are match-fit and that the crew can work together under pressure. “We will be racing competitively and trying to win every race but realistically that’s probably not going to happen,” said Foye. “So we will use the regatta to get match-fit and put the crew through their paces so that when conditions change, we can get the boat adapted quickly. We have put together a mixture of experienced crew who have sailed with the boat for a number of years plus some new crew members. While we have been training for Hobart, we also need to see the crew work together in pressure racing conditions so we know what we need to improve on prior to us reaching the Rolex Sydney Hobart start line.

“The SubZero Goat, under its former owner and name (Martin Hill’s Estate Master), won the Australian and state regatta titles so the boat is definitely good enough. I like challenges, so can a winning ocean racing crew also win a regatta? I’ll let you know on Sunday afternoon.” Foye’s Sydney 38 won its division in last year’s Rolex Sydney Hobart.

Alan Brierty and his crew will step off their new Limit, a Reichel/Pugh 62, tomorrow having just sailed the boat from Mornington to Sydney to prepare for its debut Rolex Sydney Hobart campaign. They will downsize for this weekend’s regatta to what is now commonly known as the ‘baby’ Limit, a Sydney 38 . Other Sydney 38s sailing over the weekend include Geoff Bonus’ Calibre and Gordon Ketelby’s Zen.

Yacht Owner/Skipper
Farr 40 (12-14 Dec)
Easy Tiger II Chris Way
Estate Master Lisa & Martin Hill
Kokomo Lang Walker
Sputnik Ivan Wheen
Transfusion Guido Belgiorno Nettis
White Cloud Brett Neill
Sydney 38 (13-14 Dec)
Yacht Owner/Skipper
Acuity Tony Walls
Calibre Geoff Bonus
Iplex Outlaw Alan & Tom Quick
Limit Alan Brierty / Roger Hickman
Swish Steven Proud
The SubZero Goat Clayton, Gordon & Foye
The Tavern Ian & Shane Guanaria
Uplift Darryl Hodgkinson
Zen Gordon Ketelbey

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