Winners are Grinners for the Vincentia Sailing Club at the NSW & Victorian Hobie State Championships

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NSW State Championships Round 2 – Wangi Wangi, Lake Macquarie

It’s been a successful last couple of months for the Vincentia Sailing Club, with champions rising in all shapes and sizes over the last few regattas. In particular, the NSW Hobie Cat State Championships, along with the Victorian Hobie Cat State Championships.

The first week in February saw eight Hobie 14 helms, along with Jake & Alannah on the Hobie 18, Clare & Helen on the Hobie 16, Jimmy with Wangi local, Paul as a Hobie 16 Youth team and Bridget who teamed up with Queenslander Carmen as a Hobie 16 Women’s team.

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Taking place at the Wangi Wangi RSL Amateur Sailing Club, the weekend saw a mix of conditions with a honking westerly on Saturday, followed by a blissful south-easterly filling in gradually on Sunday. Over the two days of racing, the Wang Wangi race committee, joined by VSC’s very own John & Glenn, put away nine quality heats on the flat waters of Lake Macquarie.

Backing up a win at the Australian Championships, Jake & Alannah solidified yet another State Championship on the Hobie 18. Jimmy & Paul (who was sailing on a Hobie 16 for the first time) finished third in the Youth Division (under 21), with Carmen & Bridget taking out their first Youth Championship as a Hobie 16 team, whilst finishing third in the Women’s division. Claiming second in the Women’s Championship, along with Women’s Masters Champions, Clare & Helen continued with their hot-streak after a dominant performance at the Australian Championships.

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With some of the greatest Hobie 14 sailors in Australia hailing from Jervis Bay, there was always a chance the VSC would be seated at the pointy end of the table. Adrian Mills from Revolution Sails narrowly snuck in front of local construction icon, Andrew Spinelli. Meanwhile, Spinelli’s apprentice, Gavin Luxton, slipped into the top-10, placing behind the father & son battlers Will (seventh) and Andrew McKenzie (6th).

Mick Butler finished in fifth, narrowly beating Andrew on count-back (equal points, coming down to the best result). Current National Champion, Bryn Robinson-Mills retained his title as NSW Youth Champion; however, placed second overall. Paddy Butler took out the title, finishing six points ahead of Bryn, with two firsts on the last day of racing.

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2023 NSW Hobie States hosted by Wangi Amateur Sailing Clun, Lake Macquarie (4-5 Feb 2023). Photo by Beau Outteridge

Victorian State Championships – Port Melbourne Yacht Club

Over the Victorian Labour Day long-weekend, the VSC’s youth division led the charge down in Port Melbourne for the Victorian Hobie State Championships. Vincentia High School’s Bridget Raftery & Charlotte Ellis were teaming up for the first time on a Hobie Dragoon, whilst their younger counterparts Zoe Ellis & Jill Raftery, were taking them on. Additionally, the young-fellas, Jimmy Winchester & Brody Watt, were back on the tools as the only Hobie 16 team representing NSW.

The Hobie 14s saw the Butler Boys, Paddy & Mick head down south once again, both chasing their third Victorian championship on the Hobie 14, whilst Bryn Robinson-Mills was looking to secure his third consecutive Youth Championship. Finally, Carmen Andrews competed in her first event on the Hobie 14, chasing the title of Women’s Champion.

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Three days of racing saw a variety of conditions, with lighter winds from the south-west in the morning, tending to the south-east and building exponentially in the afternoons. With weary sailors across the fleet, Monday came around where our seafarers were presented with light winds, along with a short-period, residual wind-chop left over from Sunday afternoon.

Jimmy & Brody cracked the top-10 in the Hobie 16 Championship, whilst claiming their first Youth Title as a Hobie 16 team. Bridget & Charlotte claimed bragging rights over their younger sisters, finishing second by a single point behind local lads Tom & Harry. On the other hand, Zoe & Jill finished off their regatta with two first place finishes on the last day of racing.

Carmen finished her first regatta on a Hobie 14 taking home the Women’s Title, whilst Bryn claimed his third consecutive Youth Title and placed fourth overall. Mick finished the regatta as Grand Masters Champion; however, finished second to Paddy who won the regatta by convincing seven points.

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What’s to come?

First on the agenda is the Combined High Schools Sailing Championship, which will be taking place at Belmont 16s on Lake Macquarie. A historically successful regatta for the Vincentia Sailing Club, our grom squad will be in force competing over the four day regatta during the first week of the school holidays. We encourage all families with children in high school to consider to taking part in this awesome event.

Also on the cards will be the Queensland State Championships. Held at the end of April, a bunch of sailors will be making the trip up to Manly, Brisbane to compete out of the Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron on Moreton Bay. Any sailor or supporter looking to tag along with the team, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

In the time being, we hope to see you out on Jervis Bay very, very soon!