SKUD 18s have been racing at the Sail Sydney 2012 Regatta
The 2012 Sail Sydney Regatta was held from December 13-16. Over 460 boats entered in more than 20 classes.
A three boat fleet of SKUD 18s included Jovin Tan & Desiree Lim (SIN), Alan Merry & Ron Montague (AUS-NSW) along with Neil Patterson & David Staley (AUS-VIC). The Singapore team showed their experience from day one, winning all but one heat during the ten race series.
Sydney Harbour’s weather over the four days of SKUD racing was excellent with 10-15 knots on the Thursday, 20-25 knots on the Friday and 7-12 knots on the final two days, all from the northeast.
While the other crews were enjoying the excitement of the second day breezes, the local team of Merry & Montague were dealt a blow when a shroud parted and their MkI mast collapsed. As the rig could not be repaired or replaced in time, the other boat was shared by the Australian crews over the final two days. With just two boats on the course, some good match racing resulted.
The Liberty and Access 303 were invited for the first time in 2012 and sailed a two-day weekend regatta. Only two Liberties competed – Hui Beng Hong from Singapore and Barry Coates from Queensland’s Gold Coast. Coates, a past Australian champion, dominated in each race.
Belinda Hill and Sonja Gilmour, also from Queensland, claimed the Access 303 division prize on a tie-break from Tish Enniss and Lindsay Mason (NSW). Third overall were Neil Patterson and David Staley (VIC), who entered the 303 division on the day their SKUD was being sailed by the Rushcutters Bay crew. With three wins from four starts, Patterson & Staley were able sneak ahead of the other NSW crew of Lachlan and Tony Clear.
It is hoped that there will be stronger representation from the Access Classes in 2013.