Thanks to the hardy team of skippers and crew who attended the annual working bee. The club and  infrastructure are now ready for the soon to commence sailing season.









With representatives from all facets of the club (Sabots, Lasers, Saturday and Twilight yachts, committee persons and patron) a wide variety of tasks were completed in a convivial atmosphere on the Deck of Knowledge.








The time has come for all good men (and women) to do their duty.

Assemble on the fabled Deck of All Knowledge from 0900 Hrs to chase away all the winter ills from the clubhouse and signal the approach of the 2018 – 2019 Sailing Season.

Maintenance Mark has come up with his usual array of challenging tasks to make the time spent pass quickly.

The programs for the upcoming sailing season have been added to the relevant sections on the GFS website.

Yacht Divisions (Saturday and Twilight) are on the Yachts – Racing Information page or  here.

Dinghy Classes (Sabots and Lasers) are on the Dinghies page or here. This Dinghy Program is DRAFT only and maybe subject to change.

For Yacht Divisions, Sailing Instructions (full and cockpit versions) and Course Sheets (Saturday and Twilight) are now also on the Yachts – Racing Information page for you to download.

The final WHWS Race is Sunday July 29. Presentations will be held after the race at the refurbished Balmain Sailing Club. Details will follow in the near future.

Well done to the GFS contingent who contested WHWS race 5.

On PHS handicap Passion X were a credible 3rd in Division 1 with Irukandji 5th.  In Division 2 Foxy were 5th and Jester 10th. Division 3 results were dominated by GFS yachts with Gwhizz 2nd, Tana 3rd, Conquista 4th, Hasta La Vista 5th, Seas the Moment 7th, StarElan 9th, Wind Charmer 10th and Aurora 13th. In Division 4 Capriole continued their good run finishing 2nd and Seascape were 6th.

Some great photos on the GFS Facebook page courtesy Mark Palmer.

Next race is Race 6 on Sunday July 15.

Save the date.

The Annual General Meeting will be held at the GFS clubhouse at 7:30 pm on Tuesday July 10.

The Notice of Meeting will be circulated by email and is also here.

Your attendance will be appreciated.

Well done to the GFS contingent who ventured out to contest WHWS Race 4. Overall, they produced some impressive handicap results in the cold and windy conditions.  Well done to Foxy 1st in Division 2, Gwhizz 1st in Division 3 (with Hasta La Vista 4th and Aurora 5th) and Capriole 2nd in Division 4 (with Seascape 4th and Mistress 5th). Irukandji were 4th and Passion X 8th in the wild west Division 1 to round out the GFS results. Full results are here.

     Foxy, Gwhizz and Aurora (click to enlarge).

The start was impressive so much so that the group on the start boat were just about to leap into the water to avoid the collision which looked immanent at the start of the Division 1 fleet. Luckily sense prevailed and boats not entitled to room were allowed to squeak in narrowly missing DSC1. As far as it could be ascertained there was only one minor collision.

Hasta La Vista

Next West Harbour Winter Series race is Race 5 Sunday July 1, hopefully it will be warm and sunny with a fair breeze.

There are now 70 entrants in the 2018 West Harbour Winter Series and with the right forecast we may see the largest fleet of the season.  However, for Race 4 next Sunday June 17, the wind prediction is for a strong Westerly around 25kts and a fine but cold day. If you venture out please keep safety in mind.



Click to enlarge







For Race 3 the race committee decided to send the fleet east, under the Harbour Bridge and back via Goat Island in breezes that fluctuated from 5 to 35 knots, mostly from the SE in what proved to be a ‘Soldiers Course’!

We were sent some great footage from Lloyd at ‘Webcam Sydney’of the fleet sailing under the Harbour Bridge. Check the link:

According to folklore (GFS Facebook Page) the ‘GFS weather Gods’ smiled on WHHS Race 3.


Click to enlarge




The wind remained strong (but manageable) and the rain held off. Warm clothes were exposed all all the floating catwalks contesting the race.



Photo: courtesy to Mark Palmer (see more on the GFS Facebook page)


Well done to the brave souls who ventured out!

Now here is an opportunity not to be missed – join the crew on the DSC1 (the start boat) for an enjoyable day on the water enjoying the race.  Small duties only are required. Please email either the commodore or sailing secretary via Contacts on the GFS website.

Next Winter Race is Sunday June 17.

Race 3 of the WHWS is this Sunday June 3 (Yes it’s finally Winter – weather and season).

Wind prediction looks as though the expected strong winds on Friday and Saturday may abate but may well be still be over 20, and up to 25 knots, and very south – rug up and use caution if you sail.




Click to enlarge







Results are on the BSC Website or here.  A list of entrants for Race 3 usually will appear on the BSC site some time on Friday.

Good luck if you race.

The GFS Annual presentation again proved to be a winner. A great opportunity for on water rivals to chat and review the past sailing season. Well done to the winners. It was good to see a fair percentage of them on the Deck of Knowledge to receive their awards.



Commodore David thanked the people who assisted throughout the season – both the twilight and Saturday starters, the committee especially the retiring members, sponsors especially Joe Walsh for his generous donation of services to winners of the Down Harbour Series and participants in all club races. On a sombre note he paid respect to club members and associates who have passed on during this season – Bill Wilson, Geoff Ottewill, Ross Springer and Jeanette York (wife of trophy donor Mick).





Harvey Porter ably stepped in to represent sponsor Joe Walsh in presenting prizes for Saturday racing. Andrew Limmer presented the Twilight recipients with their awards.






GFS is a club managed by a volunteer committee. Each committee member takes responsibility for a specific area of the club’s operations. Roles include finance, membership, twilight organisation, secretarial, social, racing, safety, junior sailing and handicapping.

If you would like to be involved please make contact through the club website – several of the committee are taking leave and new members are required to fill their positions.


Yep! The annual prize presentation function.

Go and check the Series Race Results just in case you placed in a Series. However, there are some ‘secret’ awards for those who have done really well.

Nevertheless it’s an opportunity to light up the discussion on the DOK to another level.

Be there or be talked about (badly)!

Saturday May 26, warning signal 1500hrs

*DOK = Deck of Knowledge (What else!)

It is with much sadness that we note the passing of Jeannette York on May 3.

Jeannette  crewed on the Etchells ‘Rob Roy’ at GFS in Twilight racing with her husband Mick until recently and regularly came back to the club for dinner following the race.

In yachting circles she was renowned for her commitment and her knowledge.

The York family is part of the fabric of the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s history. Jeanette joined the CYCA in 1952, serving 43 years on the Associates Committee, filling the role of President for six years. She became the first woman to be given Life Membership of the CYCA in 2002. Jeannette was awarded her Order of Australia Medal in 2015 ‘for service to the community of Drummoyne and to local government’.

Michael York OAM is the longest standing member of the CYCA, having joined in 1945. He competed in 14 Sydney Hobart yacht races and has represented Australia at the highest level, including the America’s Cup, Admiral’s Cup and Olympic Games, as well as many other international regattas.

A committal service for Jeannette was held at Macquarie Park Crematorium (Ryde), Camellia Chapel on Monday, 14th May 2018 at 11:30 AM.

Race 2 is this Sunday May 20 – Updated Divisions and Entries can be found here.

Race 1 saw boats out on the water on a beautiful Autumn day which finally saw the race commence when the breeze filled in after a delayed start. The course yesterday was shortened at the start for all divisions and further shortened during the race. It should be noted that when a course is shortened during a WHWS race, the committee boat will fly an ORANGE pennant and code flag S Flag and be positioned adjacent to a rounding mark. A black and white checked flag waved from the committee boat will signify that you have finished.


Yesterday’s course was shortened for all divisions at the Manns’ Point Mark. Race 1 results can be found on the Balmain Sailing Club website or hereStandout GFS performance in Race 1 was Hasta La Vista – first on handicap in Black Division.

Sailing Instructions and 2018 Course Maps are available from the BSC’s website. If you are a current member of GFS, PRSC or DSC and have paid your annual race fees you do not need to pay to enter and you can still enter using the Top Yacht Entry System by clicking here.

Please do not assume that you are in the same division as you were last year. Several boats have been moved to even out the number of boats competing in each division and to create closer racing.


All remaining Winter Series dates are as per the GFS Sailing program –


Race 2     May 20

Race 3     June 3

Race 4     June 17

Race 5     July 1

Race 6     July 15

Race 7     July 29

One of our long-standing GFS members was delighted with a fine, cool day to go and work on his yacht engine. He set off from home, unloaded his dinghy from the dinghy rack, dragged it as usual down to the edge of the pontoon, locked the clubhouse, hopped into the dinghy and with his hand pushed the dinghy away from the pontoon.

An unseen fish hook at the end of a fishing line caught in the side of his little finger. As the dinghy moved sideways from the pontoon the hook became embedded further into his finger.  With one oar and one hand he managed to move back closer to the ramp and the only way he had to free his hand was to chew his way through the nylon fishing line.  How he managed to drag the dinghy out of the water on to the concrete ramp, up the deck into the clubhouse and lift it end-on into the dinghy rack is beyond comprehension!

Back home with a length of line hanging from his finger and an embedded hook at the end of the line he was taken to the GP who didn’t want to touch it as the finger’s nerve was comprised. GP wrote a referral to RNS where he spent the day, X-rays then a number of local injections prior to surgical removal of the hook. He has a return visit to RNS next week.

I would like to suggest that GFS members look carefully as errant casts from fisher-persons on Bay Street Wharf often land and snag on our ramp and pontoon.

GFS Facebook Group

Upcoming Events

  • 23/01/2019Twilight Summer Series Race 6 Aus Day Race
  • 26/01/2019Australia Day - no race at GFS
  • 30/01/2019Twilight Summer Series Race 7
  • 02/02/2019Saturday Summer Series Race 6 - GFS Aus Day Race
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