Day three of the 2021 Bollé Australia Match Cup hosted by the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia, Sydney. 26 November 2021. Photo © Drew Malcolm

Sargent steals Bolle Australia Match Cup

Will Sargent, Finn Tapper, Nathan Guliksen, Ryan Ewings & Jess Tavener had to come from behind, not only over the past three-days, but in the Final Series itself and even on the final run to claim the Bollé Australia Match Cup 2021.

The 2 -1 victory over fellow CYCA team of Cole Tapper, Jack Littlechild, Charlie Alexander, Hamish Vass & Evie Haseldine came at the very end after Tapper had topped the round robin qualifying stage, won their semi-finals 2 – 0 then led the Finals after winning Race 1.

With a windy southerly forecast for the day, the Race Committee moved racing forward to 1100hrs and shortened the Finals to a first to 2-point series. 30 + knots was in the forecast and it delivered, with racing taking place in Rushcutters Bay in breeze of 16 – 28 knots.

In the petit-final, Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron’s Jed Cruickshank sailed cleanly over CYCA’s Hugo Stoner to secure the third place on the podium.

As the petit-finals were complete all attention shifted to the Finals. Tapper nailed the opening race. The team lead off the start and at every mark to take a comfortable and confidence building win. Race 2 saw a controversial penalty call go against Tapper in the pre-start, but Sargent lifted his game to win the start and extend around the course to level the series and take it to a decider.

In the strong southerly breeze, the winner-takes-all final race started strongly for Tapper who shut out Sargent at the Committee Boat end. Forced to trail in and beind, Sargent couldn’t get a break up the first beat to trail around Mark 1 by 14 seconds.

Down the run both boats put the Elliotts up on the step, plaining downwind to the gate marker. Tapper kept in control and continued to hold the lead and looked set for victory. However, on the final run, Tapper gybed away early as Sargent once again put the bow up in more pressure to plain downwind.

As the final gybes came in Sargent had drawn level to leeward and towards the favoured Committee Boat end. Tapper could do nothing to now attack Sargent who sailed through the line barely half a length ahead to steal victory from the jaws of defeat.

Both boats sailed well in the Finals with the result going either way. This was Sargent’s second win in a matter of weeks, having taken out the RPAYC Ecostore Match Racing Regatta last weekend.

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