Oldies and Youth Development Sailors combine on Le Billet

Club Marine Pittwater to Paradise Regatta: oldies and YD combine on Le Billet

Mark Tinworth and Mark Waterhouse, owners of the Pittwater based yacht Le Billet, intend to repeat their successful crew program and give youth sailors the run of their boat for a six- part offshore series that includes the Club Marine Pittwater to Paradise ocean race in early January 2018.

From a pool of 10 current and recent Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club Youth Development graduates, the two Marks and YD coordinator Rachel Bower will pull together enough young sailors for a third crack at the club’s East Coast Bluewater Pointscore Series which runs annually between July and April.

YD sailor Clare Costanzo has raced the Beneteau 44.7 Le Billet to Southport three times, twice in the winter and once in January this year in what was a trial race from Pittwater to Southport in south-east Queensland.

“The fact the two Marks put together a crew that is half young and half experienced makes us all want to be part of it; we know we are going with friends but we have people to learn from at the same time,” Costanzo said.

“Skills are being passed on and you never stop learning when you are at sea. Last year in the Southport, YD sailor and rigger Rachel Bower was able to put her knowledge into practice and set up a jury rig. We all learned from this, and how to think on the spot.”

Costanzo’s offshore highlight came in the same race, “Two days of sending the boat down the waves with the kite up the whole way.”

Bower chimes in: “It’s a pretty amazing opportunity for us; there aren’t many owners who say ‘here’s a boat, bring six of your mates and go sailing’. Everyone on board is hard-working, we’ve proven we are serious and have competed with credible results.

“The two Marks are instrumental in teaching us, plus we have Steve McConaghy and whether it’s a lesson on sea-state or trim, he coaches us from the start line to the finish line. Once Clare and I were on watch with Steve in the middle of the night and asked him questions for three hours – and he was happy to answer all of them. Steve is a huge part of the magic on the boat,” Bower added.

Club Marine East Coast Bluewater Pointscore Series

The Club Marine East Coast Blue Water Pointscore Series (BWPS) is the The Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club’s premier offshore Series, conducted along the east coast of Australia between September and April, which now includes the new Club Marine Pittwater to Paradise Regatta.

The 2017-18 Series begins with a Pittwater to Bird Island return race, which is situated north of Norah Head off the Budgewoi Peninsula and raced under Australian Sailing Category 3 requirements.

The Series format sees a wide range of Bluewater offshore conditions with distances ranging from 18 to 370 nautical miles and a mixture of Category 2 overnight races and Category 3 daylight races.  This diversity means it is a fantastic learning and training tool for any skipper or crew new to offshore racing and enjoyable for seasoned veterans who seek variety in their racing.  Many crews have used the Series to prepare themselves for taking on the diverse conditions of the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race.

“Those who enter this series have the flexibility to do one or all the races and the Club will ensure that each team will have the best support possible to get the most from their racing.” said Brendan Rourke RPAYC Sailing Manager. 

The preparation and training involved with ocean racing is a massive undertaking and skippers are sometimes left scratching their heads in how to go about preparing their team.  Neil Driscoll who runs Above and Beyond Boating can’t speak highly enough of the RPAYC Blue Water Series.

“No one wants to go out go into a big race and sail for four days to come last.  The Blue Water Point Score Series prepares teams to work together to achieve better results.  July is a perfect time to start setting up for Southport.  It allows your team to acquire the certified training for the category upgrades and also prepares the boat and team for the start of the sailing season.” said Driscoll.

Club Marine Pittwater to Paradise Regatta entry now open

The Notice of Race for the new Club Marine Pittwater to Paradise Regatta is now online at http://www.pittwatertoparadise.com.au/race-documents.html and boat owners have until December 1, 2017 to register for Australia’s newest summer series at the best entry fee rate.

Announced back in April, the Pittwater to Paradise Regatta comprises two stages. The opening event is the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club’s 370 nautical mile ocean race starting from Pittwater to the north of Sydney on January 2, 2018 and finishing just off the Queensland Gold Coast at Southport.

The Club Marine Pittwater to Paradise Regatta is confirmed as an exciting long term fixture to feature in Australia’s summer sailing calendar

The Club Marine Pittwater to Paradise Regatta is confirmed as an exciting long term fixture to feature in Australia’s summer sailing calendar.  

 Australia’s east coast offshore sailing scene will take on an exciting new look with the staging of the Club Marine Pittwater to Paradise Regatta to start out of The Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club on January 2, 2018.
 
After negotiations with Southport Yacht Club it was decided that a new era of racing will take place for both well-established clubs with the combination of the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club’s ocean race to Southport and the Southport Yacht Club’s Bartercard Sail Paradise Series to create this exciting new event. 
 
 This decision comes off the back of a very successful Club Marine Pittwater to Southport Race in January 2017. The event drew keen competitors from both NSW and Queensland, and aided by an unseasonal southerly the race was completed in almost record time by Doug Coulter’s Shakti, a 46 footer from Lake Macquarie Yacht Club. “We reached a top speed of around 23 knots but averaged around 18 – 16 knots most of the way up the coast.” Coulter said.
 
Apart from the fast-paced downwind race, the 2017 event was complimented by the exceptional hospitality from the Southport Yacht Club. Volunteers and staffed worked tirelessly for 24 hours a day to ensure the safety and enjoyment of all the competitors as they entered the Gold Coast seaway into the Southport marina.
 
The 2017 Club Marine Pittwater to Southport race kicked off the year with an exciting, fast race complete with on-water social media competitions, live starts broadcast on Facebook, a media helicopter hovering over the fleet and a blistering pace to match.  

Downwind racing, torn spinnakers and happy faces wrap up the Club Marine Pittwater to Southport Yacht Race

Consistent strong southerly breezes for the first ever Club Marine Pittwater to Southport Yacht Race hosted by the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club brought in the last boat, Ian Edward’s Firefly, from 18 starters to the finish line at 22:10 EDT on Wednesday January 4, 2017.

Doug Coulter’s Shakti, a Rogers 46 from Lake Macquarie Yacht Club, not only claimed line honours in the Club Marine Pittwater to Southport Yacht Race but also collected the silverware for first place in both IRC and ORCi divisions.High Anxiety pre-start, before tearing their spinnaker High Anxiety pre-start, before tearing their spinnaker

Shakti is the Hindu Goddess of power or force – and there was plenty of power in the boat’s run up the coast riding the south to south-east breeze, leading the fleet from the outset and setting a race record of 36 hours, 46 minutes, 07 seconds. Shakti’s average speed ranged between 16 – 18 knots with a top speed of 23 knots.

The pre-race forecast foretold a fast course time from the 1pm start from Broken Bay with competitors eager for a thrilling downhill run into Southport on Queensland’s south east coast. With gusts reaching 30 knots, the downhill run came at a cost for some owners and sail makers can look forward to a flurry of orders for replacement spinnakers. 

Marcus Grimes, winner of the race’s social media competition for best live update, commented in one of his videos: “It’s been a pretty eventful race for us, we’ve been having a lot of fun but I reckon we’ve gone through every spinnaker in the bag.” Even with the added challenge of spinnaker issues, Grimes’ Elliott 10.5 High Anxiety claimed additional race prizes to go with their social media awards - third  PHS overall and third  PHS Division 2.

First on PHS was Jan Scholten and Stephen Parker’s Panchax, aptly named the “giant killer” by RPAYC Club Coach Tom Spithill due to their performance against the larger fleet. The Stewart 34, one of the smallest boats in the fleet, began the 370 nautical mile race strongly mid-fleet and maintained boat speed all the way up the coast to cross the line in 13th place and take victory in the PHS overall results and also PHS Division 2.

Weather Report - 5 January

 

OUTLOOK FOR RETURN
 
SITUATION
No change in situation.
High pressure close to Tasmania and trough/low pressure system off the central QLD coast – between these 2 weather systems there is an onshore SE flow for the northern half of the NSW coast and stronger SE flow onto the SE-E QLD coast. This pattern will change only slowly the next few days; over the weekend, the high pressure will move to the central Tasman Sea and the ridge from that high pressure will move north along the NSW coast and slowly the SE wind regime will shift to the E-NE. By Monday 9th, that ridge will be close to the far north coast of NSW and SE QLD with NE wind. The next major S change to run up the NSW coast is presently timed to occur on WED 11th.
 
CURRENT 
strong assisting current near the coast around Smoky Cape and Cape Byron; strong adverse current out near the shelf elsewhere.
 
FORECAST
THU 05  SE/12-16 to Smoky Cape; E-NE/12-16 south of there – scattered showers
FRI 06  SE-ESE/12-16 north of Smoky Cape; E-NE/10-15 south of there – scattered showers
SAT 07  SE-ESE/14-18 north of Smoky; E-NE/10-15 south of DC and NE/14-18 south of Seal Rocks – few showers north coast
SUN 08  SE/10-15 north of Byron; NE/10-15 south of Byron and NE/20-25 south of Smoky Cape - dry
MON 09  E-NE/10-15 north Byron; NE/14-18 Byron to Smoky; NE/20-25 Smoky to Pittwater
TUE 10  variable then NE/10-15 north Byron; NE/20-25 most of remainder of NSW coast - dry
WED 11  NW-NE/20-25 much of the NSW coast; S/20-25 reaching Sydney afternoon and Seal Rocks at night
 

Wednesday Weather Forecast

WED 04   6.45am
 
A forecast will be available for any boat returning this week or next week.
 
SITUATION
No significant change from the previous forecast.
High pressure close to Tasmania and trough/low pressure system on the central QLD coast – between these 2 weather systems there is an onshore SE flow for the northern half of the NSW coast and stronger SE flow onto the SE-E QLD coast. This pattern will change only slowly the next few days; over the weekend, the high pressure will move to the central Tasman Sea and the ridge from that high pressure will move north along the NSW coast and slowly the SE wind regime will shift to the E-NE. By Monday 9th, that ridge will be close to the far north coast of NSW and SE QLD with NE wind.
 
WEATHER  
A few showers, particularly morning and night
 
CURRENT 
strong adverse current near the coast around Smoky Cape and Cape Byron; strong adverse current out near the shelf elsewhere.
 
FORECAST
WED 04  
FORECAST (wind speed in knots is average, gusts will be higher, particularly around passing showers)
30S-27S
WIND  SW-S/10-15 in close to the coast early morning and SE/14-18 offshore and SSE-SE/20-25 north of Byron. SE/14-18 most places in the afternoon but SE/20-25 near the finish with SSE/16-22 near the finish tonight
WAVES  1.5m waves in close and 2m waves offshore and 1.5m SE swell
 

Shakti sets the record for the first ever Club Marine Pittwater to Southport Yacht Race

Doug Coulter’s Shakti from the Lake Macquarie Yacht Club have steamed their way up the New South Wales coast to set the record for the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club’s first ever Club Marine Pittwater to Southport Yacht Race with an official finish time of 0201 EDT on January 4, 2017 gave them an elapsed time of 36hrs, 46mins 07 seconds.

With winds going a little beyond the predicted strength Coulter was very happy with the 46-footer’s performance in the south to southeast breeze reaching top speeds of 23 knots and averaging 18 to 16 knots.

“We reached a top speed of around 23 knots but averaged around 18 – 16 knots most of the way up the coast.” Coulter said.

“The breeze was a little stronger than we expected which got us here pretty quickly” said the skipper early this morning, adding, “in some spots the gusts reached 30 knots.”

Coulter wasn’t too fazed when asked about setting the record but glad that all the preparation paid off with a great team effort and result given it was the boat’s first race to Southport.

Now the wait begins for the team to see if the gap of the rest of the finishing fleet is wide enough for them to maintain their IRC and ORC overall handicap lead. The outcome is one they have no control over as it depends how fast it takes to complete the 370 nautical mile ocean race that began on Monday at 1pm from Broken Bay.

Following in close second for the IRC handicap is the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club’s Le Billet which is currently just south of Tweed Heads. In close second for the ORC handicap is Phil Arnall’s Anger Management from the Newcastle Cruising Yacht Club.

Shakti Leads the Fleet to Southport

Doug Coulter’s Shakti has taken full advantage of the current weather pattern to launch their boat up the NSW coast overnight and maintain the lead in the first ever Club Marine Pittwater to Southport Yacht Race.

Shakti passed Coffs Harbour at around 8:30am this morning with gusts up to 27 knots from the south setting up a cruising speed of 14 knots.

Given the current weather pattern and their boat speed, Coulter is confident the 46-footer from Lake Macquarie will reach the finish line off Southport’s Main Beach by tonight, Tuesday January 3, 2017.

“If the breeze holds and we don’t run into any problems I’d say we’ll be finishing around 8pm or 9pm tonight,” Coulter said.

 “We’ve had around 20 plus knots pretty much all night,” said the skipper this morning, adding, “we had some little issues which slowed us down but we got them fixed.”

Shakti also leads the fleet on IRC and ORCi handicap.

Tuesday Weather report - 3 January

TUE 03 6.45am

A forecast will be available for any boat returning this week or next week.


SITUATION
No significant change from the previous forecast
The S change has cleared NSW coast and the race area; S wind turning SSE-SE today and generally SE direction tomorrow. The SE wind flow onto the NSW coast is between high pressure near Tasmania and low pressure trough on the central QLD coast. That pattern will be slow to change – the wind slowly easing from the south and slowly shifting left in direction from SSE to SE then ESE.

WEATHER
Frequent showers along the far north coast of NSW and SE QLD coast – scattered showers on the remainder of the NSW coast with little change in the pattern for the next 48 hrs.

CURRENT
strong adverse current near the coast around Smoky Cape and Cape Byron; strong adverse current out near the shelf elsewhere.

TUE 03
FORECAST (wind speed in knots is average, gusts will be higher, particularly around passing showers)
32S-30S
WIND SW-S/15-25 inshore and S/20-25 offshore in the morning. SSE-SE/15-20 inshore and offshore in the afternoon.
Easing to SE-S-SW/10-15 at night near the coast; remaining SE/14-18 offshore
WAVES 1.5-2m waves ; 1.5m SSE swell

30S-28S
WIND S-SE/24-28 easing to SE/20-25 at night
WAVES 1.5-2m waves; 1.5m SSE swell

 

 

Pittwater to Southport

 

The Pittwater to Southport Yacht Race will be starting on Sydney's Pittwater,  1 hour drive north from Sydney's CBD on January 2, 2017.

The race offers competitors a strategic challenge as they race between the surfline and the current, past unsurpassed scenic coastlines, prior to arriving in one of Queensland's most popular coastal cities.

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Contacts

 

The Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club
E: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
T: 02 9998 3700
A: 16 Mitala St, Newport 2106 Australia
W: www.rpayc.com.au

Southport Yacht Club
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T: 02 6652 4390
A: 1 Macarthur Pde, Main Beach, Queensland, 4217 
W: www.southportyachtclub.com.au