All up for grabs in changing conditions after Day 1 of the Marinassess Women’s Match Racing Regatta

  • Youth
  • NEWS
  • By Ross Macdonald
  • 10 Sep 2017 09:58:54
Copyright 2012


It was especially tricky on Sydney Harbour for day one of the Marinassess Women’s Match Racing Regatta at the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia. With wind ranging from 7-22 knots coming from anywhere between 100-310 degrees in angle, it was an open slather on the race course.

“Today became extremely shifty on the course, and was difficult because of the two breezes, one out of Rushcutters Bay and one out of Double Bay,” explained Race Committee Denis Thompson. RPAYC’s Clare Costanzo leads the pack after eight flights on seven wins.

Costanzo could have been unbeaten after day one, if it wasn’t for a mainsail halyard problem in flight four in her match against RNZYS Celia Willison which saw her and her team lose their only match of the day.

“We had a good day, it was fun sailing together again after the Youth Worlds in Long Beach, USA, that was probably the best part,” said Clare.

The two RPAYC teams had an intense pre-start with both boats being called over the line at the start signal. Clare put the pedal to the metal after returning behind the line, and extended out to the right hand side of the course to leeward of Parker.

“We had a tight race with Sarah, we rounded first at the top, but we got overtaken on the downwind. The downwinds were incredibly tricky, but we managed to get back to her and regained the lead at the bottom,” Clare recalled.

When asked about the key to starting well today, she commented, “We were just keeping it simple and leading back to the line early a lot of the time to make sure we had options to stay on the right side of the shift. For tomorrow, we want to work on our time on distance, as we feel we can do better than we did today. Jess is not able to come tomorrow, so we’re having a crew mix up with Amy Lee joining us for the day,” she finished.

Celia Willison and her Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron team are the only internationals this year at the Marinassess. After the NZ Women’s Match Racing event was cancelled, their next option was to come across the ditch and compete here.

“It’s great to come here again, we came last year for the event and loved the racing. It’s super shifty here, and we’re not used to sailing somewhere without tide, but it was a lot of fun today,” Celia said.

“We don’t have any women’s regattas at home this year, so we’ve been sailing against the guys instead. There’s a few differences between open and women’s events, mainly that there is less yelling and fewer penalties with women!” she laughed. “We’re looking forward to racing again tomorrow, and seeing what we can improve on.”

University Match Racing World Champion, Sarah Parker came out of the day on equal points with Clare, but sitting in second on countback.

“Our day was good, it took a while to warm up out there, but we started working with each other, and backing each other up after a few races this morning. It was very shifty, but the breeze strength was nice and opened up opportunities. I probably prefer racing in light winds, and looking at the forecast, it’s all on tomorrow,” she ended.

CYCA’s Lauren Gallaway ended her day strongly, dominating RSYS Charlotte Griffin in the final flight of the day. Gallaway locked Griffin into ‘coffin corner’ for the first half of the start, and then really put the hammer in when she locked Griffin above the start boat as the gun went.

Racing continues tomorrow at 9.30am, with the continuation of round robin two, and then semi-finals and finals, as well as the fifth and sixth sail offs. You can follow the results on the CYCA YSA Facebook Page




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