The J24 Class NSW Championship 2020 is being planned for the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club on Pittwater, over the 31Oct-01Nov weekend. NOR released!!!
Please note, all organisation for this event is based on the expectation of a relaxation to the current COVID-19 rules, restricting competitors from different regions being together. Expected announcement date 07Oct.
We are asking entries to start rolling in for planning purposes. Entries are open through the RPAYC Regatta page. Payment option will commence 07Oct.
This year’s NSW States offered something for everyone, or in reality everything for everyone. From almost no wind in race 4 on Sunday morning to around 60knots in Saturday arvo’s thunderstorm, along with lightning, thunder and rain … a good decision by the race committee to close the show down after race 3.
Saturday always looked like being windy, jib weather from way back – although there were a couple of genoas being stretched on the course, the comment was that they weren’t really any advantage though. Looks like there were a couple of people taking a swim too, Sean lost Big Tim and one of the girls over the side when the lifeline let go. The default question was why the other two weren’t hiking hard enough to go in with them …. mmm questions being asked ! I heard Jeanette also had a swimmer but don’t have the details. Tricky sailing with really shifty westerlies and a start line deep in Rose bay to a top mark to the north of Shark Is. Race two and a course change saw us and a couple of others head out to the left only to find that the top mark hadn’t moved more than a boat length, so we had a reach in around the island back to the top mark …. so much for thinking I had picked a winner there !
We were having our own little problems on Code, the boat hadn’t been raced for a couple of years and we had a few boat issues, new crew (Trimmer Pete is used to steering a bigger boat and our training prior was in everything under 5knots and how to use a motor to get back home) and of course the weather and the bloke on the helm – no wonder we won the handicap prize. But seriously we improved with every race untill the last two and I have to thank my crew for the huge effort in getting up from Melbourne and racing the boat, as usual we had fun and when you aren’t winning, that is what sailing is all about.
Race 2 gave us all a chance to go downwind in a big breeze (for a change) and many boats took the no kite option … Terry, next time I am risking the national debt with the kite and you are coasting along without one at the same speed next to me, could you just please move away so it isn’t so obvious ! Jeanette Syme sailing Brett Hudson’s Wildfire (with Brett in the crew said, “it was a bit hair raising on Saturday, especially squalls on the downwind, I was surprised to see my battered and bruised team turn up on Sunday – but their moral usually lifts after a good flogging! And poor Elena slipped in after a big westerley lift dropped into a knock and we fell over to windward with 6 and came up with 5. She was such a trooper smiling all the way!”
But of course the front of the fleet is sailing away from us at light speed and as usual the bloody Black Prince is up there and will ask ‘where was I’ later, but this time he’s not getting it all his own way. Steve Girdis has gone cycling on pain of death from someone and Robbie Brewer is out of retirement and driving Convicts and driving well, with two to one on Dave in Kaotic, he is the day winner. In fact we are all winners when most of us get home before the next storm cell hits. So glad we are not racing in that. Not without some drama at the club and round the corner for the boats going back to the CYC though. It’s as black as … and then white, as the 60knot front of the thunderstorm lifts the top 2 feet of water into the air around the boats in pleasant little Felix Bay. Some of us got ashore … and some didn’t. Vortex went ashore too, well done Sean in the crew tender turned rescue boat dragging Vortex off in the height of the storm. Sean, yes that’s the Commodore, organiser, tender driver, boat rescuer, crew rescuer and the guy that also comes 3rd – makes me feel very humble !
This year we have 4 boats from Cronulla, the fast developing fleet down in the ‘Shire’. One might say a mixed bag of boats and sailors like anywhere, but a great group of guys and girls that love a good time and some hard racing. It’s been a process to get them to the harbour but 3 have sailed up and Dave Mackay has trailed. Dave is the guy that won the big one in the Moths some … well quite some years ago. Known affectionately as “Magoo” and with a sense of humour that instantly puts you at ease and laughing, he is no slug on the race course and comes home 4th overall in Stockcar. Welcome to our world Dave, hope you come and play more often. And that goes for all our new friends at Cronulla, Barry Ryan in Pinot, Clinton Hood in CJ Constructions and Mick Reynolds in Slippery Fish who has worked so hard to get the Cronulla Js into class racing with us. Lets get more of you to come and play.
Sunday has dawned sunny and with a dropping westerly breeze, very shifty and getting very light, the Black Prince sailing Arthur Crother’s Kaotic with a mixed crew out of Melbourne bangs in another win to make the tally 2 all with Convicts. We drift around for a little while as the wind tries to make up it’s mind. Finally the wind changes to a south east breeze, settling down and offering great top end genoa racing for the last two …. or was that the last 5 races.
Three practice starts in the last race had the RO threatening the black flag and that was enough to finally get a clean start away. Convicts they might be, but they nailed the last two and it was a done deal. Robbie Brewer and team on Convicts Revenge taking it out from Dave Suda on Kaotic and the Commodore on Sailpac coming in 3rd.
The team on Code Violation won the Zimmer Frame with Barry Ryan in Pinot and Geoff Cowen in Nokomis 2nd and 3rd.
Congratulations to Kate Holmes for being awarded the Women on Water Trophy for many years of attendance and effort with Jeanette on various boats. No Thommo Cup this year as Ron didn’t show, so I guess Jeanette keeps it by default.
Thanks to the team at RPEYC, the NSW Association, the help at the crane at RANSA and the effort from the Cronulla guys to get there, all the Sydney guys and girls that turn up and race and thanks to all the volunteers and friendly smiling faces that made the regatta an event we look forward to.
If you want to add your own comments or pics about the regatta send them to me and I will put them online. Cheers Simon
The Balmain Regatta once again has a J24 Division and we encourage all J24’s to enter this great one day regatta. It’s 3 months away so get your teams organised now and lets support this event. Everyone wants one design racing so heres a great opportunity for you to race solely against other J24s.
Balmain Regatta is one of Sydney’s oldest sporting events, with a long history in our waterways. It was first held in 1849 and continued until 1934, when it was discontinued. It was revived in 1994 by the Wooden Boat Association, and Balmain Sailing Club. Today it is run by Balmain Sailing Club, with the support of other harbour sailing clubs and community organisations, and is a real celebration of Balmain and sailing on the Western Harbour. The Balmain Sailing Club invites sailors, boaties and the general community to join with us for the 2014 Balmain Regatta. It will include a full day of racing and water events, along with a non-stop stream of food, refreshments and activities for everyone. The racing area will generally be west of Sydney Harbour Bridge – although some of the faster classes will venture under the Bridge to Shark Island before returning to finish with all other classes in front of the Balmain Sailing Club.
Mat Short, the rising star in the fast growing fleet of J24s at Cronulla, proved the old maxim – if you want to finish first, first you have to finish – and although he blitzed the racing on Saturday, not sailing on Sunday put an end to his (deserved) potential championship winning result. Instead a short and happy Dave McKay with a huge reputation for success and giving back to the sport, took the honours in a switch around (after a error in the race points was realised) from the prizegiving honours where one of our newest female skippers, Lia Darby was deservedly awarded first place (for a short time). Lia now scores an equally well deserved second place after a huge effort in delivering, preparing and racing hard in the demanding conditions (and then sailing it back to Sydney). Well done Lia !
Held over the weekend of the 6-9 June, the Cronulla Sailing Club in Sydney, ran a very successful J24 short course regatta. Racing was focused on a windward leeward style event with legs at no more than 750 meters to ensure close racing between all. Mick Reynolds, the J24 captain at Cronulla with the great help of Fiona Campbell off COOEE TOO, led a keen group of volunteers in bringing this regatta to a successful conclusion. (Much of this story is also written by Mick and edited by Simon). This event is planned as an annual event and planning is already underway for next year over the Queen’s Birthday Long Weekend 2015.
The Friday saw horizontal rain and weather that we all love in Sydney for this time of year. Boats had already began to gather with STARPAC being delivered the Sunday prior and RIFF RAFF being sailed from AUSSEA Sailing School on Botany Bay on the Thursday. SAILPAC arrived by trailer.
The most spectacular arrival would have to have been Steve O’Rouke who towed his J24, ENDLESS SUMMER from Botany Bay on the Saturday morning in 2 to 3metre Seas ! I didn’t know a J could to 15kts, but anything’s possible behind a super powered twin engine rib!!!
It was interesting to see amongst the crews that when it comes to class racing how many past and present sailing identities, seem to be drawn to an event such as this. The racing therefore was first class!
Racing commenced at 1200 on the Saturday with a planned 4 races. Race starter Dave McLachlan along with Dennis McClaren, started the fleet of 14 boats in a good solid 15 to 20knt SSW Breeze and a nice sunny day. Racing in the Port Hacking Estuary to a windward mark set off the beautiful shores of the Royal National Park.
Great sailing by young skipper Mat Short and the crew on SHORT FACED, including Mat’s mum, saw them take 4 of the five races conducted to see SHORT FACED in the lead on completion of day one.
Unfortunately due to prior sailing commitments with his sail maker father Ian, Mathew Short was unable to race on the second day.
On Sunday the 3 scheduled races got underway in a solid 20 to 25 knt SSW gusting to 30knt. STARPAC won the first race of the second day in strengthening conditions that with the short 500m leg meant a number of boats elected to run without kites to avoid wipeouts as performed by numerous others. The tough starting conditions also saw local boats, MCKAY MARINE, PINOT, SLIPPERY FISH and CJ CONSTRUCTIONS score OCS, leaving the gate open for The Girls on COOEE TOO to come storming through in 4th – their best race finish – go girls !
SAILPAC won the final two races of the regatta and a very well deserved 3rd place overall for Tim Briggs, the current NSW treasurer and all-round nice guy. Says Tim, “it’s the first time I have helmed the J in a major regatta and I was scared as hell on the Saturday and even more on the Sunday.” Well done Tim. Racing over for the day and the real race, back to the clubhouse and bar began. The Cronulla clubhouse is a great venue, situated right on the water, (with watering deck) and a crane and a small amount of hard stand. Right at the top of Gunnamatta Bay, the view and atmosphere is superb.
Dave McKay, once again proved he’s not just a short man with a pretty face (Dave got hit by the boom and although covered with blood, with his broad grin, quipped that he had ‘finally got into the girls loo’ as Lia and Michelle off STARPAC did the nurse thing for him) and after sailing a very good regatta took out the championship once the drop was finally enacted.
The final result is amended and is as follows:
Only A Journey
Wave Cutter II
M Van Dinther
Mat Short, who I think needs to be encouraged to compete on the National circuit is excited about the prospects of the class and his own boat at Cronulla, “It was really good to see so many boats get out there and such close racing out on the water. Credit should go to Dave McLachlan and his team on the start boat setting a good course conducive to competitive racing in the conditions and for their hard work (as always). I would also like to thank the sponsors for getting onboard with the regatta and hopefully it will continue to grow over the coming years.” (Sail with us Mat – Dave S needs a push along !)
From Mick, “The Race Committee would like to thank all competitors for making the weekend such a success, supporting an event based on participation and racing J24s. Also the sportsmanship shown when penalties and boats may have touched, with penalty turns enacted as to no protests being lodged. The Cronulla Sailing Club is committed to relighting the passion in the owners and crews, to engage and support the upcoming J24 NSW Association Racing Program.”
From Simon.”To those that didn’t know about it – look at the website more often. To those who didn’t come – that’s one you don’t want to miss next year. To Hugo, planned and prepared and ready to come, but took a fall off a ladder at work the week before and is still in hospital. From the fleet at Cronulla and at large, Get well soon Hugo, we missed you.
Thanks also to Phil Rogers for his great photography – you can see a heap of photos here – pics
Did you do the regatta and want to add a story – email it to Mick and we’ll put it online.
Mick Reynolds from Slippery Fish has been doing a great job driving the organisation for a unique Queens Birthday Weekend Regatta at Cronulla. Designed to be a short course regatta, it will feature up to 8 races over the long weekend, in either the wide blue ocean in Bate Bay, or perhaps in more sheltered Bundeena Bay if the weather is inclement.
Entry is just 80 bucks so there is no excuse for not getting your boat to Cronulla for this great regatta. Sail your boat down from Sydney, trail from anywhere, there is a crane to put you in and there is a full social program to keep the conversation going. Mick and the Cronulla YC have done a great job organising this so come along, support the regatta and have a great time.
Here’s the great thing about this weekend – its a J regatta, but there will be no measuring or weighing, in fact if you have a read of the NOR and you will see that this is all deliberately waived – you have to be a J24 but no one is going to check the details – this is a regatta with the emphasis on FUN RACING and FUN ASHORE
We are promoting sailing at the Cronulla and promoting sailing J24s.
Steve won the start, won the race and won the regatta, our new National Champion talks a little about the regatta – wise words indeed ! (Ed)
“All agreed the 2014 J24 Nationals was well run by the very quaint and accommodating Royal Prince Edward Yacht Club . There was much attention to detail and plenty of volunteers and staff to ensure the sailors felt welcome and enjoyed themselves. There was the friendly tender service servicing all the moored Js and the catering staff doling out bacon and egg rolls and cappuccinos for competitors to enjoy while sitting on the grass overlooking one of Sydney Harbour’s most pristine beaches. The presentation dinner was wonderful on the enclosed verandah.
This was some consolation to the Melbourne folk who observed that for most of the regatta it was sunnier and warmer in Melbourne, to which of course the locals responded with the local standard “its not normally like this, you should have been here last week“. In other onshore developments an undeserved twist of fate found the RPEYC Commodore’s (Sean Kirkjan) J24 beached in front of the club one morning mid regatta under mysterious circumstances, suffering considerable keel damage.
It was great having competitors from Singapore, South Australia and Victoria as well as locals.
It certainly was not “the brochure” of steady Sydney summer nor’easters, in fact we only had nor’easters for the invitation race and final day.
Most of the racing happened in fairly shifty and mentally challenging south and south east winds. The upside from this was that there was a lot of “snakes and ladders” on the course, with leaders never being able to relax and those deep able to carry on in hope.
Racing was close, positions changed regularly throughout the whole the fleet, and big winning margins were rare.
The results sheet over 10 races bears this out and shows the variety in heat winners and place getters which made it fun and kept it interesting.
All the competitors would have their own perspective of how it went, but from on board Convicts Revenge this is how it happened …..
From a technical sailing perspective this regatta seemed very much about throwing away the compass and fine tuning guide and just sailing free and fast to the next bit of pressure.
The racing culminated in a friendly “showdown” of sorts for the last 2 races on the final day, where 1 point only separated Pacemaker from Kaotic and Convicts Revenge between 1st, 2nd and 3rd.
Some tough decisions to be made because the bible to Sydney Harbour sailing says “thou shall starboard tack from start, hit Bradley’s head, tack on to port and thou shall to the lay”. However the bible also says “the incoming tides around the celebration of Xmas can be strong so go right on port”.
This theology on top of which boat to cover ! ?
In the first beat of the first race, the 3 boats went, right covering each other, to be collectively somewhat hammered by those who stuck with tradition and hit Bradleys in the left.
In the last race there was (predictably)some match racing action at the start between Convicts and Pacemaker which resulted in Pacemaker doing penalty turns. Convicts came out better on the first beat, in the lead ,working the left with Kaotic going right. Up the last beat Kaotic worked the middle well and caught right up and then it was a tacking dual . . They split, Convicts picking up a pressure advantage in the right which delivered the winning margin…. of one point.”
Somewhere south of Sydney, in a Peter Jackson style plot with ‘goings on down there’, there is a place called ‘The Shire’ – they even made a TV series about it.
A quiet little place of incredible beauty, classically laid out with a long inlet full of boats, a small but friendly club right on the water and ‘tie up space fer yer boat’. It’s protected by a large sand bar but with access to the open ocean. Known more for its Etchells fleet and regattas and larger yachts, there are ……….. ‘Goings On’
It seems there is a growing revolution with an increase in the number of J24s there, apparently the number is now 13 (NSW’s largest J fleet), with 3 new boats in the last month. Now it seems that it is more ‘club members sailing Js rather than Js sailing at the club’, as they keep to themselves alot but maybe that’s because they have a secret they want to keep hidden.
Cronulla is a great place to sail, semi sheltered from raging Southerlies, it enjoys warm weather, good winds, great beaches and plenty of cold club beer and it offers ocean sailing that most of us never get. There’s talk afoot of a Bi Annual winter regatta on Queens Birthday weekend, in fact there has already been one (T’was a little windy)
Hey Australia, J24s are being found and sailed, its a great little boat that is youth and female friendly (current Cronulla J champions are ‘the Girls” sailing Cooee II, although that could change this year) and they are being sailed in some fantastic places in Australia. Cronulla is just one of those places. Check it out next time you are in Sydney, or check out a mid winter regatta ………. sounds like a great idea !
Dave Suda retained the NSW State Title for 2013 in a lightning series on Sydney Harbour over the weekend. With Saturday’s racing actually severely curtailed by some of Sydney’s biggest lightning storms, rain and lack of wind and constant direction, only two races were held on Saturday in pretty nice but light conditions in the end. Sunday was a glamour day with a 10 – 16 knot SE breeze and plenty of sunshine, 4 races were held to give a thrilling climax to a close and tough fought weekend.
Sundays racing was close and hard fought from the get go with Sean Kirkjian taking a first on the Saturday and now already fighting for the championship with Dave Suda both on equal points after Saturdays racing, but both behind Ron Thompson who had a 1st and a 3rd going into Sunday.
This year’s fleet was smaller at 12 boats but the depth of the field was strong, with NSW stalwarts John Crawford, Dave West, Chris Lee, and Arthur Crothers all on the water. From Victoria were Dave Suda, Ron Thompson and Simon Grain steering Arthur’s Kaotic. Doug Watson from SA was also there in El Fideldo. Also rounding out the fleet were Starpac, Nokomis and Brett Hudson crewing for Jeanette Thompson on his own boat Wildfire.
A perfect breeze prevailed during the day as we raced across the harbor avoiding each other (most of the time) TP52s, ferries and everyone else on the harbor. Banging corners didn’t seem to work as well this year as there were considerable wind bends and lifts in the middle of the course. Arthur Crothers turned 70 and was presented with a wicked chocolate cake, Nokomis swam a crew member in one race and Kicking Bottom prepared to call starboard on a seaplane being just a few of the usual oddities in regattas.
As the day progressed it became clear that the regatta might just go back to Dave Suda from Victoria and he and Sean had a personal battle in the last race to decide the honours. In the end Dave retained the crown and Sean came second on a count back from an amazing performance from Ron in KB. Ron also taking out the Thommo Cup from Jeanette on Wildfire, although as a consolation she won the handicap section.
Once again the RPEYC venue excelled with sunny skies above the lawn at the waterfont of the club when it counted and lightning shows when it didn’t, friendly staff and capable race management meant we were happy both on and off the water. Commodore Sean once again amazingly ran the club (thanks to all the volunteers and staff), the class team (thanks to Paula and Tim), ran the crew ferry and still came second! What a fantastic place, after years of grumbling, even Herschel loves the place and passed a thought of keeping a summer boat there. Talking about being there, getting there was an event in itself for some with huge storms on the Friday night, Joe Pearson taking nearly 6 hours to get there and making what must be an all time record for Luke Mathews taking 19 hrs to fly to Sydney from Melbourne (via Launceston).
Now is the time to think about a trip to Royal Prince Edwards, as the 2014 Nationals will also be held here in January 4 – 9th. If you want a great place to sail, a great place to relax in between racing, then RPEYC is your summer regatta of choice.
The ‘J24 Stig’ also chips in:
Once again the foreign invaders triumphed in the NSW J24 State Titles held at RPEYC.
The slick crew work on David Suda’s Pacemaker came to the fore when the pressure was on in the final races. After drop calculated for the top 3 boats Pacemaker, Sailpac and Kicking Bottom were equal on 6 points after 4 races, with the ever competitive Chris Lee on Vortex nipping at the stern.
Tom Waterhouse had Suda as early race favourite with the betting wide open for the minors. The performance of the weekend came from evergreen veteran Ron Thompson, who once again prized the Thompson Cup from Janette’s grasp.
Nestled amongst the Blue Ribbon Mansions of Double Bay the RPEYC was the idyllic setting for the Ashes on water between the States. The lone representative from Festival State (SA) and home of Mass murderers “El Fidelo” snuck under the radar and had some great results. Once the trough of bad weather brought up by the Victorians cleared we had some fantastic racing. The TP52 sailors next to our track looked on in envy of the tight, competitive and sometimes aggressive nature of J24 racing made their regatta look like a contiki tour.
Once the spray had settled the committee from NSW’s had to accept they would once again be invoiced for trophy engraving by David Suda. A worthy champion with a great crew; however the admiration will soon disappear and sledging begin with the Nationals around the corner.
Thank you everyone who made the huge effort of bringing your boats to the regatta and we hope to see you all in January for the Nationals. Unfortunately we will not be using Paula’s scales from home at the Nationals so make sure your crew weights are correct.
More from Ronnie Green …
SYDNEY Harbour on a weekend – expect the unusual and you will still be surprised
The J24s had a great weekend of racing on Sydney Harbour which lived up to its reputation as a venue which tests your heart beat to the maximum. Great location, spectacular sights and even more unusual things to plan and look out for on the water.
On Saturday we all sat at the magnificent Royal Prince Edward Yacht Club (RPEYC) drinking our Pimms, watching the stream of thunderstorms cross the harbour. Some played pool while others started watching that sledging game on TV. We were calmly interrupted every 46 minutes by an announcement from Sean that a decision on sailing is imminent, don’t go away and just wait for the next 30 minutes. The wind kept blowing from the north, no … south east, no … north east, no … east, changing every 5 minutes from 6 knots to nothing. After about our 10th bottle of Pimms, suddenly there was a gap in the thunderstorms and guess what, we are all on the water sailing out to the start line. Only the wind died again, sails dropped and engines came out again. Decision to sail to be made at 3pm and at 2:55pm KB was seen circling the committee boat desperate to get back to watching that sledging game and the 11th bottle of Pimms. No … the wind arrived from the North and low and behold we are off.
RPEYC has unique rounding marks being the colour red, which is fantastic as every other mark laid on the Harbour is yellow. You can imagine the mess as there are a few races being sailed at the same time. The top mark was laid 0.6 km upwind (important fact to remember). The fleet took off and everyone went left eyes searching the harbour for something red. Yes I see two red marks near South Head amongst the 20 other yellow marks and KB tacked as they appear to be near the east side of the harbour. That’s the longest 0.6km I have seen was yelled from the back of the boat, there must be others. Yes was the answer and there is another red mark but only one. Well find the other one was the answer. Suddenly a fishing boat moved and the second red mark was found right in front of our position. Don’t point!!! Just keep quiet as Ace and us are the only ones who know. I call it brilliant tacking – my sister called it something else starting with a……
Next lap we were out in front rounded the top mark put up the kite brilliantly and found ourselves right under a 50ft yawl with a mast head spinnaker. Had to quickly gybe away and our competitor quietly went to windward. Who was supposed to looking out for this was the yell again from the back of the boat. Answer – YOU. Kept quiet then. We had to do some deft manoeuvres to stay in front.
Sunday was a fun day as all the fleets came out including the TP52s who started next to us and sailed across our course. Lovely. I remember completing a tack to lay the top mark when the bow sprit of a TP52 just passed behind us travelling at 10 times our speed.
Race number four the top marks were laid just south of Shark Island. We were flying chasing Sean and the breeze was a bit tricky near the rounding mark. Suddenly there was a call watch out for the plane so I cast my eyes skywards thinking there was a low flying sea plane about to land. Silly me, no the plane was right in front of us about to take off. You have to learn to expect the unexpected on Sydney Harbour. Fortunately it moved so no harm done except to the heart.
On one downwind leg there were four boats charging to the port rounding mark to go south on starboard so we went to the starboard mark to head up the middle on port. Suddenly there was a call for a ferry rounding Bradley’s head. A quick look up checking our VMG against the speed of the Manly Ferry (about 20 knots) indicated if we don’t look and keep our eyes closed we should make it across. What a fantastic feeling as we tacked to starboard to see us windward of the ferry and the rest of the fleet behind it. I thought this was brilliant sailing but my sister said a…. again. Her vocabulary is not very good. The excitement only was short lived as that bloke Sean came from behind the ferry and crossed us and then I said a….
The race committee decided we should go for a picnic on Shark Island, as they laid the top mark close enough to visit. One time we tacked to lay the mark easily. Learnt lessons from the past, when suddenly the genoa backed as the wind changed 90 degrees on us. We tacked only to see Nokomis coming at us on starboard. A bit of yelling and screaming but thanks to a great effort from the crew we made it around without putting more green paint on the opposition boats.
Overall on behalf of the crew of KB, thank you to the officials and management of RPEYC for a great regatta, brilliant venue and magnificent support crews taking us to and from our mooring, one even gave us a tourist lecture of the houses in the Bay. I look forward to January when the Harbour will be clear and at its best.