Sydney Harbour Regatta 5 & 6 March 2016

Sydney Harbour Regatta, hosted by Middle Harbour Yacht Club on  5 & 6 March 2016, will have a J24 division.

 MHYC have a dedicated J24 trophy that they hope to present this year but in order to run the division they need your entry.

This is always a fun and well run regatta and if anyone can turn on great entertainment, it’s MHYC!

imageFor more information, and to enter, visit:

Second hand sails wanted

A couple of owners have been asking my about buying used sails:- main, jib and genoas, so if anyone has any sails for sale, please email me the details and I can pass the information on, and hopefully help you make a sale!

Sportsnap – Awesome close up Nationals photography


When Doug MacGregor asked Luis Ferreiro to come along and try his hand at yachting photography, he couldn’t have known what a star he was unleashing on us. Luis’ on water photography is superb. Alan Cousins drove the boat all week and got Luis close to the action, in fact I think due to the enormous lens Luis used I believe he had to back away at times.

Luis has captured the action, the excitement, the struggle and the colour of each day in stunning clarity and focus. The shots are brilliant !

Go now to and find your boat and marvel at the images. Guys and girls I also urge you to consider purchasing a shot or two to help make Luis’ week long effort worth his while – when you see the images you will know we want him back next time.

Go to

2016 Nationals final day

Spectacular pictures from Luis Ferreiro coming soon
Spectacular pictures from Luis Ferreiro coming soon


The Black Prince of Sandringham has been returned to his throne.

The final day was a series of ups and downs. Steve Girdis sailing Convicts Revenge came up from 3rd to claim second and Jet went down to 3rd. With the first race sailed in lighter airs Jet had the edge on speed and moved closer to the top with another win, Dave was getting worried, but as Brendan reminds us all that Simon hadn’t had his bad race yet and he did in the 3rd race of the day – our new drop !

With the breeze building throughout the day Pacemaker reeled off a string of firsts and Convicts a string of seconds – game over.

Brendan and Hugo came in with consistent 3rds and 4ths to cement their overall 4th and 5th positions.
Kirsty steering Robyn Coombs’ Hyperactive took out 6th even with an apparently spectacular Chinese on one of the runs. Ron Thomson won the Thommo Cup but Janette did a great job sailing in the rough conditions to record a very consistent result mid fleet.
The Handicap result mirrored the One Design except that Hugo took out 3rd overall from Jet in 4th.

Final results are here

The committee and club excelled at a memorable presentation dinner, with the usual ‘short Scottish’ speech from President Doug MacGregor and MC for the raffle and other comments from the classes funniest resident wit John Neville. The Victorian committee did a great job with the whole organisation of the regatta, it’s a huge job and the team brought it together very well, the club’s race management volunteers lead by Graeme Watt and Craig Wiley also excelled on and off the track, a big thank you on behalf of all the competitors.

Thanks also to our long time sponsor MonJohn Security for once again supporting the regatta, also to John Neville’s Data Agility and Iguana Design for contributing to the success of the event. Remember if you have a need for security, IT and graphic design, please support our sponsors where you can.

Doug MacGregor organised Luis Ferreiro to come and take pictures both on and off the water and the results are spectacular (well done all those who waved at the right time or put their boats in spectacular positions for the camera). Louie’s pics will be available on   this is a new site and should have most of the pics loaded by Friday 15 January, (there are over 500 pics I believe) home page pics are there already. I strongly suggest you have a look and support Luis by buying pics of your boat, I think he will be a great and valuable addition to our class and the marine picture business in the future.

Nationals Day Three

A tough day on the water today with Southerly winds of 22-28 knots and big seas – hard work up wind but great surfing downwind.
Only two races were sailed with the third being canned when in the starting sequence, I think many were quite glad to be going back to the marina.
Dave Suda, ‘The Black Prince of Sandringham’ showed his mettle again today with two wins from Simon Grain and Steve Girdis in a tie for second in the first race and from Simon Grain and then Steve Girdis in the second race. Brendan Lee was 4th in both races. Brendan and Dave were both very fast upwind today with Jet picking up the places downwind.
‘Mr J24’ Hugo Ottaway in Bruschetta VI, Robyn Coombs in Hyperactive, Ron Thomson the new National President in Kicking and Dave McKay in Stockcar are the bunch fighting out the placings from 5th to 8th, all pretty close on points and it’s anyone’s final placing in this group.
Of particular note is John Neville in Vice Versa currently lying in 9th and sailing very well, consistent placings have given John his best Nationals position so far – well done John.
Up to yesterday the Thommo Cup was alive and well with equal numbers of wins to both Janette and Ron, but today’s stronger conditions have seen Ron take two wins off Janette, tomorrow’s forecast lighter conditions may suite Janette more. This is the first Nationals the two have battled it out in their own boats, so tomorrow will be an eagerly anticipated climax to this battle.
There are the usual hard luck stories on windy days and Peter Lee’s day came to an abrupt end with the kite and Fitzy’s head being trashed. Fitzy is getting stitches in the Sandy Hospital but is basically ok it appears – hard head !
There are a few skippers licking their unexpected placings at the back end of the fleet. Just remember guys you are in a classy even if smaller fleet than we would like and the boats further up the food chain are not going to give anything away. It’s tough and getting tougher.
A belated welcome to Zibo Madej from CYCSA in Adelaide with a crew of Chinese from Shanghai, not everyone speaks English on the boat, so it is a vertical learning curve for the crew and in today’s conditions it must have been hard work. Well done Zibo and thanks for coming to the regatta, with more practice and time I hope we will see you again and further up the fleet.
The handicap placings are very similar with Dave Suda leading from Simon Grain, Steve Girdis, Brendan Lee and Hugo Ottaway. Not quite sure why that is but the details on both One Design and Handicap are to be found here
If you have regatta stories that we can publish on the website as part of the Nationals coverage please talk to me – we all like to read different points of view.

Nationals Day Two

It's Jet's day as we extend away from the fleet
It’s Jet’s day as we extend away from the fleet

Perfect sailing weather today (it’s always like this at Sandy!) with a 10 knot SE breeze and flat water. Shirts and shorts sailing so the northern hemisphere overseas visitors are very happy. Three races in today and the big mover is Jet with two bullets and a second to Convicts in race 6. With the drop now in place this brings the leader board to Pacemaker on 9 points from Jet on 13, two back to Convicts and a further five back to By the Lee.
For full results go to the SYC site here

In a great display of sailing our ‘Local Guest’ skipper Peter Lee (Brendan’s father – ‘By the Lee’) sailing one of our youth boats ‘Sidetracked’ in a last minute entry finished 3rd (11 places ahead of the boy racer son) in one of the races and was up there for most of the other two. We’ve always known that Sidetracked (a revitalised Jarkan) was a fast boat and that Pete is a good driver (he taught Brendan all he knows – and plenty he has forgotten). Might be time to think about your own boat Pete !

In other news; After yesterday’s clean racing we have the first protests today so the room will be busy – a certain lady skipper in the middle of it I gather. Bruce Alexander on Gunboat with a new crew did a bit of trawling with the kite but was otherwise in the thick of it. Dave McKay on Stockcar had his drop with an OCS – gotta listen to the radio Dave !

In general the racing is tight with an average of 35 – 40 min per race and the fleet finishing within 4 minutes in each race. Tomorrow is a lay day, so racing resumes on thursday.

Nationals Day One

After an abandoned practice day and with the possibility of Day One being a no-go as well it is great to be able to say we got 3 good races in. The first two races were with most people on genoas in 12 – 15 knot SE breeze and the third race onto jibs with the wind coming in around the 18-20knot mark.
As wind came up the shifts got trickier and swung through a wider arc with the beach side of the course paying dividends more often than not. A little confusion with reading the sailing instructions or not …! saw a number of boats taking the unnecessary scenic route around the hitch mark on the second leg …. uugh! In general the fleet was well behaved and everyone is happily back in the marina showing off their battle flags.
The Black Prince of Sandringham is in the lead with a 1,2,1 from Steve Girdis, Brendan Lee, Ron Thomson and Simon Grain.
For full results go to the SYC site here

Nationals Newsletter No. 9

Hi all

Great to see everyone starting to get into motion today, lots of boat polishing going on, forestay flags being hoisted, and most importantly – eating! After what has been a tough December for many, and a perhaps somewhat less-than-festive festive season, there were plenty of relieved faces peering down at the scales! Well done to all those who lost, maintained or gained weight under some pretty close scrutiny!

But…we are only just beginning. There a few things that we need to nag you about still. First – the presentation night. Apologies in advance for the hassling, but we have a deadline for numbers with the club. On offer is an amazing two course menu – we’ve trawled through their options and selected the absolute best!

Entree is either of the
– duck salad with orange segments, fried noodles, shallots and ponzu vinaigrette (gf)
– scallops with pulled pork and apple sauce

Main is a selection between
– chargrilled eye fillet with mustard cream dauphinoise potato, sautéed kale, Dutch carrot and jus gras (gf)
– sesame crusted salmon fillet with wasabi mash, shiitake mushrooms, Bok Choy and ponzu beurre Blanc sauce (gf)

Combine that with complimentary drink on arrival and the Crawdaddys keeping us addicted to the dance floor and it promises to be a night not to be missed!

We do need everyone’s rsvp and payment tomorrow though, so please don’t delay!

Also, the Helys have generously donated a boat cover for auction, with proceeds to go to our much loved absent sailor – Luke Matthews. Please check it out, and if you fancy keeping those nasty uv rays from damaging your deck, all while earning you some awesome karma, then we’d like to hear some bids!!

Good luck all!