A cordial invitation is extended to owners of eligible Etchells yachts to enter this event on Saturday 22nd and Sunday 23rd April 2017 on Pittwater. The Regatta will consist of six races conducted by the Avalon Sailing Club (ASC).

An interim presentation for Races 1, 2 & 3 will be held at a catered dinner on the Saturday evening at ASC. Bookings are essential. The Don McLachlan Perpetual Trophies presentation plus presentation for Races 4, 5 & 6 will be held after the race on Sunday 23rd April at the Clubhouse.

According to Richie from Eggshells, ‘It would be fun to sail an Etchells to Pittwater. But I think we would need a few boats to sail together’. Apparently many Etchells have gone up and down the coast without any problems including Foxy.

10th Don McLachlan NOR and SI.

Wet and grey conditions ensured only the hardiest souls ventured out to contest Autumn Race 3. Course 35 added a few challenges with varying wind conditions around the course.


Sincere thanks to Aaron and Josh who have stepped in to effectively manage the start and finish duties over the last two weeks in the absence of the regular crew who will be back next week. Starts will resume from Pegasus.



In Blue Division 1 Irukandji made a brilliant start and established a commanding lead early.  Foxy and Blue Chip (pictured), Forte Forever and Eggshells were tenacious in bridging the gap which narrowed throughout the course of the race. At the finish Irukandji were back ahead of Foxy and Forte. On handicap Foxy pipped Irukandji (pictured below) with Eggshells third.








In Green Division 2 Hasta La Vista said bye bye to the remainder of the fleet leaving them in pursuit for the entire journey. Umzimkulu, Joka, Paca and Speedwell kept close and Gwhizz made every effort to catch Hasta.  At the end Hasta from Gwhizz and Clovelly Pacific.  Tana was lost momentarily in the computer.  On handicap Hasta La Vista, Umzimkulu and Joka were well deserved winners and place getters.

Start from the deck and Course 45. The uncertain prediction of late storms didn’t deter the fleet. With a new start group to replace the ‘normal’ crew and the addition of Harvey’s dulcet tones there was no possibility of getting the timing wrong. It was much appreciated, as was Harvey’s attempt to replace the BOM at the end of the race with a rain arrival time –which proved pretty accurate.

The Mirror fleet from Hunters Hill Sailing club made for a colourful sight on the water and a hazard to navigation

In Blue Division a slow start through Humbug saw Blue Chip establish a commanding lead over the Etchells. They provided a master class in spinnaker handling in the tricky variable conditions to be ahead at the finish. The Etchells group kept close all finishing within a minute. Eggshells grabbed the lead through the computer with Chloe third.

In Green Division the wind at the start resulted in a mixed bag of good and bad fortune as yachts attempted to reach and then pass Onions point. Gwhizz and Flair perhaps had the best exit.  As the race progressed Gwhizz, Umzimkulu, Peachy Teats Velocity (Pictured, courtesy of the James Kearney Twilight collection – see the link above) and Paca had a close tilt for the lead. Speedwell caught up after a slow start to be up with the leaders. Umzimkulu recorded a well-deserved win both on the water and on handicap with Gwhizz back ahead of Speedwell. Minor handicap placings to Paca and Flair.

Please note: Autumn Race 3 will also be a Clubhouse start.

Twilight Fleet Photos  – on 18 January 2017 photos of the fleet were taken by member James Kearney. To view click here.
If you would like a copy of any of the photos they are available for download free of charge. High Resolution images are available upon request, please contact James Kearney at jkearney@selbornechambers.com.au

Heat wave conditions and conflicting wind predictions resulted in selecting a short course (3) for all divisions. The wind avoided what was predicted by either method and resulted in a good NNE breeze which progressively dropped as the day progressed.


Coupled with the wind there was a large outgoing tide. The pontoon at the club and the ramp were reversed at the top of the tide (pictured).


In Blue Division the final result is provisional and may depend on the outcome of a protest.  On the water Flashback then Irukandji and Monkey Business while on handicap Monkey Business, Hasta La Vista and then Tana.


In White Division the fleet was reminiscent of the golden age of GFS Etchells with 4 the only contestants in the race. On the water and handicap results were the same with Forte Forever ahead of Eggshells and then Chloe. Foxy made a good effort without setting a kite on the long run home from Shark Island


In Red Umzimkulu II led the fleet establishing a good margin with Joka making every effort possible to catch up. Paca sailed consistently to be back next. On handicap Umzimkulu from Joka and Flair.

Please be aware of the heat wave conditions predicted to continue for Sydney with temperatures approaching 40 degrees.

Ensure that there is plenty of fresh water on board your yacht.

Avoid dehydration, use and re-apply sunscreen and wear a hat.

Again a delayed start and a short course 13A due to the uncertainty of the various wind predictions linked to the GFS website. The 10 minute delay proved beneficial as the start saw yachts heading for Goat in a nice breeze. However, the rounding at Goat proved tricky for some in the fickle breeze in the shelter of the island.


In Blue Division 1 Irukandji powered away to lead the fleet and finish ahead of Blue Chip and Chloe. Jester was rewarded for a good sail being first on handicap ahead of Blue Chip and Chloe.


In Green Division 2 the fleet made a good start until the Goat doldrums came in to play which allowed some yachts to escape and others to park for several minutes. Peach Teats Velocity (pictured) established a good lead to finish ahead of Gwhizz and Hasta La Vista. Handicap results to Paca from Hasta and Flaira.


Although we are not sailing for sheep stations it was good to see a yacht exonerate by completing a ‘two turns’ penalty after an on water incident. This was much appreciated and would have avoided any possible protest action.

Australian Sailing has announced the 2017 Australian Sailing Youth Team, who will represent their country at the 2017 Youth Sailing World Championship.

Included  in the team for the Boy’s skiff (29er) are Henry Larking and Miles Davey (representing Woollahra Sailing Club, NSW).

See previous post success-for-an-ex-gfs-sabot-sailor

This just showed how many races you can have at once Summer Race 6, Mick York Race 4, the GFS Saturday Australia Day race and final race of the Summer Series all in one. Thanks to Harvey Porter for stepping in to do the start and finish duties.

To add to the occasion the Sydney Amateurs Fleet were rounding Spectacle and Snapper Islands and the Middle Harbour Fleet were contesting the Bedlam Cup rounding a mark off the previous Gladesville Hospital at Bedlam Bay. Sure would have been interesting to see some of the Sydney Hobart sized yachts negotiate the narrows of the Parramatta River with a substantially falling tide.

Anyway back to the real world sunny conditions a strong NNE wind gave the GFS fleet a good challenging race. The start from the club was interesting and for the first time in my memory a general recall occurred for the Blue fleet.

Blue sailed course 41 and again the Etchells ended up dominant with Forte Forever, Foxy and Eggshells keeping the same order on the water and in the computer.  Series results to Forte from Eggs and Blue Chip.

Green sailed course 39 (same except missing the final rounding of Cockatoo).  Hasta La Vista and Tana made a break under the huge party boat that suddenly materialised just 100m after our start forcing some to go under and others above the obstruction. Gwhizz again were powerful and eventually gained the lead to be back ahead of Tana and Hasta. Tana scored a well deserved win on handicap from Gwhizz and Flair. Series result to Paca and Flair (equal) from StarElan (pictured).

Next race is Autumn Race 1 and handicaps revert to those at the end of the Spring Series.

GFS again participated as a ‘satellite event in the Australia Day Regatta.  2017 marked the 181st regatta which is regarded as the oldest continuing sailing regatta in the world.

The results for our races in order first, second, third were –

Twilight Blue                    Gwhizz, Worlds Apart, French Connection

Twilight Green                 Tana, Out of Africa, Streetfighter

Twilight White                  Paca, Joka, Amateau

Twilight Orange               Barubi, L’Atitude, The Saints

Twilight Gold                    Disko Trooper, Gem, Mind/Matter

Twilight Black                   Soundtrack, Sweet Chariot, Dump Truck

Saturday Blue                  Forte Forever, Foxy, Eggshells

Saturday Green               Tana, Gwhizz, Flair

Sunday Laser                   Max Effort, Break Wind, Orinoco

 Sabot   1 Up                     Wildside

 Sabot  2 Up                      Sabotage

Medallions were awarded after the various races for second and third places. If you didn’t collect yours they will be in the GFS Sailing Office.

The winners will be invited to attend a presentation at Sydney Town Hall on March 28 to collect their medallions.

The wind prediction from earlier in the week did not eventuate, although the wind was from the south and south east. Course 19 provided a challenge especially with spinnaker runs and the bit back to the finish through Humbug. The 17 Endeavour yachts sailing their State and National titles also made for a bit of a challenge as one of their race finishes coincided with our start with both lines in close proximity.


Blue Division 1 was again a good result for the Etchells with Forte Forever ahead of Eggshells at the finish. Blue Chip were third and the results remained in the same order through the computer.


In Green Division 2 the race proved to be a bit of a precession with Gwhizz leading by a good margin from PT Velocity and Flair (pictured). Paca made a strong run towards the finish. Handicap results to Flair from Gwhizz and Paca.


Next race is the GFS Saturday Australia Day Race – winners of both divisions will be expected to attend the presentation function at Sydney Town Hall. Harvey Porter will award the medallions to the second and third place getters at the club after the race.

The 2017 Australian Youth Championships followed on at the Adelaide Sailing Club from the recent open National Championship with the first day of racing January 11 and the final day of racing to close the competition on Saturday 14 January.

Henry Larkings and Miles Davey, representing Woollahra SC, were again successful (see previous) taking out the 29er class by 3 points from current World Champion Tom Crockett from Belmont SC.  44 boats contested the 29er class.

Of the five youth classes there was representation from all Australian states and six additional nations including Germany, France, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand and Ireland.

Additionally, the Australian Youth Championships is the final selection regatta for those youth sailors vying for a spot on the 2017/18 Australian Sailing Youth Team.

Results for the 29er Class are here.

The weather conditions again proved tricky to determine and fortunately the breeze came in just in time for the start. The decision to sail shorter courses was made for a number of reasons specifically the uncertainty of the breeze along with the hot humid conditions with temperatures around 30o and the huge run out tide (a change of 1.7 metres). It was too hot to stand on the clubhouse deck without shoes.


Blue Division had a quick race around the Fort and the other islands with Flashback winning both on the water and handicap from Blue Chip (pictured) both on scratch and handicap and Peach Teats 3rd on scratch and Tana on handicap.


In White Division the Etchells were the dominant force with Forte Forever, Foxy and Eggshells on scratch and handicap after a close race.


In Red Division Paca and Joka gained the ascendency and along with Wind Charmer were within one minute at the end. Joka were first back but were overtaken by Paca in the computer.


Good luck to Mike Wise and crew in Barubi and Richard Wood and crew in Evo for the Endeavour Yacht titles at Drummoyne Sailing Club next Saturday and Sunday.

The RANSA (Royal Australian Naval Sailing Association) Regatta will be held on Sunday 19th February. There is provision for up to six spinnaker divisions, a Gaffer division and two mixed non-spinnaker divisions. Starting time will be from 1100 onwards with each boat allocated a separate handicap starting time.

Sailing Instructions will be available at the RANSA Clubhouse and on the RANSA website at least one week prior to the Regatta.

The Notice of Race is NOR here and Entry Form Entry Form here. These are also available from the RANSA website: www.ransa.yachting.org.au.

All participants are invited back to the Clubhouse for presentation of divisional prizes, awarding of the Admiral’s Trophy to the best-sailed club on the harbour and post racing refreshments with live entertainment.

 For a number of years, Blues Point Yacht Club has added to its racing program by undertaking an annual cruise from Sydney Harbour to Pittwater.  This year is no exception and the Commodore of BPYC, Duncan Veal (who is also a member of GFS), has invited GFS member yachts to join the cruise.

Yachts will begin just inside South Head at 1130hrs on Saturday 4 February and sail to Royal Motor Yacht Club, Pittwater.  Berths will be arranged there for yachts staying overnight.  This gives access to the Club’s facilities, including hot showers.  Informal, pre-dinner drinks are usually held amongst crews on various yachts, followed by dinner at the RMYC Bistro, sometimes followed by informal post-dinner drinks on some yachts (someone once said BPYC is a drinking Club with a sailing problem!).  In other words, the emphasis is on casual fun with friends brought together through a love of sailing.

It’s expected that yachts will make their own way back to Sydney on 5 February.

There’s no yacht entry charge for GFS boats for this event.  Berthing cost at RMYC Pittwater, arranged by BPYC, is $55/night.  All other expenses, including all drinks and food while at RMYC, are at own cost.

For more information, call or SMS Duncan on 0417 942 290, or email duncveal@gmail.com.  If you’re interested, please respond ASAP so sufficient yacht berths can be arranged.  To learn more about BPYC, see www.bpyc.com.au.

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