Online entry has opened and the Notice of Race is available for the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s annual Land Rover Winter Series, which opens with the Windward Trophy Great Veterans Race and the Jill McLay Ladies Day on Sunday 23 April.
Won last year by Carl Crafoord’s Amon Ra after a battle with Simon Kurts’ Love & War and Nigel Stokes’ Fidelis, a high point of the opening day is the Great Veteran’s Race. It is open to boats that sailed Sydney Hobart Yacht Race’s from the 1940s through to the mid 1980’s. Entrants must be over 30 years old and have competed in a Sydney Hobart to enter.
Names we know and love that have previously graced the start line in the non-spinnaker around the Harbour race include Anitra V, Southerly, Lolita, Stormy Petrel, Suraya, Maris, Mercedes IV, Struen Marie, Archina and Lorita Maria.
The Ladies Day series includes divisions for spinnaker and non-spinnaker competition, as well as a Sydney 38 division. The opening race is named for the late Jill McLay, a loved and longstanding staff member of the CYCA. It closes on 16 July with the Chris Lee Ladies Day.
Chris was a well-known member and Associates Committee member. She became involved in sailing through her father, Frederick ‘Jack’ Palmer, who skippered ‘Even’ in the 1955 Sydney Hobart among others. Chris’ husband, the late Geoff Lee, owned racing yachts named ‘Taurus’ and donated the trophy in her memory.
A mid-Ladies Day race will be held on 11 June, the Queen’s Birthday weekend. The best placed after three races in Spinnaker and Non-Spinnaker categories will be crowned winners.
Between these ‘bookend’ races is the 10-race pointscore series, beginning on 30 April and finishing on 9 July, with the official prize giving taking place on Friday 21 July.
This is the time of year when you never known what weather will be thrown your way. It could be light to nothing under sunny warm skies, or light drizzle, to blowing dogs off chains and bitterly cold and rainy.
Whatever is dished out, it’s a great way to spend a winter’s Sunday, starting with breakfast from the Club’s legendary ‘Breakfast Club’, which would not exist without the volunteers who man the various stations each year.
And who would miss the aftermath? A few drinks, something to eat from the Bistro and a bit of friendly repartee among crews ahead of the divisional placegetters’ announcement, before enjoying the remainder of Sunday.
Weekly prizes are awarded to first, second and third placegetters in each division and include exclusive CYCA Land Rover Winter Series merchandise.
The annual Sunday event attracted around 150 boats divided into 12 Divisions last year.
Entry and NoR online - Click here to view.
By Di Pearson, CYCA Media