The Vincentia Sailing Club’s Hobie 14 Training & Development weekend went down in style on Saturday and Sunday. With Gurugama blowing in from the west, the VSC’s Race Officer, John Eastment put on a dozen short, high intensity races a short reach of Plantation Point. Over the course of the weekend, three Hobie 16s hit the water, along with eleven Hobie 14s and a Maricat 4.0.
Bringing down the Lamborghini less than 24 hours since returning from Bali, the Big-Mac made his short and sweet appearance putting Poly in the water. Joining John on Saturday, Pete Raftery manned the flags in the variable nor’ wester.
Hitting the Bay in the late morning, the Butler Boys were joined by local legends Bryn & Adrian, along with Bridgey Raftery on the 14s. Clare & Helen were racing on the 16 against fellow Vincentians Andrew & Jill. Travelling south for the weekend, Rod Waterhouse brought along his daughter, Bridget for her first crack on a Hobie 14. Likewise, Australian Women’s Champion, Emma Rankin took on the challenge of the 14 for the first time, whilst Dave & Ainslie joined them on the Hobie 16.
The three Hobie 16s were producing astounding boat speed in Gurugama’s shifty conditions. Sailing for the first time together, Andrew & Jill weren’t slowing down at all as Clare & Helen continued their journey as a top-tier women’s Hobie 16 team. Rod & MB went tit-for-tat in the Hobie 14s, as Paddy snuck in with one bullet. Northern Beaches locals Emma and Bridget took to the Hobie 14s like a Dobbo to a cuppa tea, getting quicker with each manoeuvre. The VSC’s Bridgey, racing on the new and improved ‘Mouse‘ for the first time, was keeping the boat flat and fast all around the course.
Finishing the day right on time, as a dying Gurugama soon turned the Moona Moona (water’s of Jervis Bay) to glass, the sailors slowly made their way to shore before a debrief session at the local Taproom at the Jervis Bay Brewing Co.
Sunday morning saw lighter conditions across the Moona Moona, with a stronger westerly forecasted for the afternoon. Hitting the water as close to 10am as possible, John was joined by Ainslie as Dave made the transition to the Hobie 14 ‘Fickle Finger‘. Characterised as being playful yet slightly aggressive, Dave had no trouble in his downward transition as he wrangled the beast in the light breeze.
Holding five hotshot races before Gurugama blew in at ludicrous speed, a total of eleven Hobie 14s hit the start line in tricky conditions. Joining the mariners from the previous day, Jeremy and Dobbo replaced Bryn, who we can confirm is still missing in action. Joining Adrian, the boys were frothing being back out on the water, despite their toes turning blue after two hours on the water.
Bridgey, Emma and Bridget were once again developing their skills as the newest NSW talent in the Hobie 14 Class. Bridgey, with her own boat, Bridget on ‘Dhaawarri’, and Emma on Arbi’s ‘Dude Where’s My Car?’, the trio were continually honing their starts, boat handling and manoeuvring as they rent head to head with the well-seasoned old boys on the race track.
There were swims aplenty on the race track. Adrian put it in nose first on an upwind leg. Bridgey was hit by a larger than life gust; Jill came to the rescue. Meanwhile, Paddy put it in twice during the last race when Gurugama came through at 25-30 knots. Taking out the majority of Sunday’s races, Paddy battled against with Rod and MB in the flukey conditions.
We would like to express our thanks to John once again, along with Peter and Ainslie, for volunteering to run the races on the VSC’s Poly on Saturday and Sunday. Thank you to Andrew McKenzie, who despite not sailing and only just arriving back Bali, brought down the Lamborghini. Finally, thank you to Lisa who cooked the BBQ and kept us fed both afternoons. We couldn’t do it without you all!