Smooth sailing leads to $250 cash prize | Goolwa Regatta Week

By Cass Schlimbach

Cooper's team on Wind in the Willows enjoyed the lifestyle. Photos: Chris Caffin

Geoff Perry’s Anoqua managed a hard-fought yardstick victory tonight amongst a small but competitive fleet for Goolwa Regatta Week’s ‘Tune-Up’ Race – he also took home the coveted $250 cash prize.

In the lead up to Saturday’s big Milang-Goolwa Freshwater Classic, today was all about speed with two sprint races consisting of a windward-leeward course of only one and a half laps.

With boats ranging from Farr 7500s, Sonatas and RL28s, their class handicaps also came into play.

The first race was the qualifying round and the last three boats would be knocked out, which would leave the top six boats to fight it out in the final for the $250 winner-takes-all cash prize.

The first race was quite calm, with most boats keeping their own lane and space on the course and at the marks.

No spinnakers were allowed in tonight's tune-up race. Photos: Chris Caffin
No spinnakers were allowed in tonight’s tune-up race. Photos: Chris Caffin

The final race however was the complete opposite with stronger and puffier winds and a much tighter start line – this meant some boats played it tactical and held others away from the line until the latest possible moment.

As the breeze picked up, the race did as well as the sailors’ eyes lit up in the hope of winning the cash.

It was extremely close and in the last lap the fleet split at the bottom mark and came back together just before the top.

Bacchus looks up the course chasing the fleet. Photos: Chris Caffin
Bacchus looks up the course chasing the fleet. Photos: Chris Caffin

Harry Cooper, skippering Wind in the Willows, was first to the final top mark and led the fleet all the way to the finish, gaining a large lead by the line.

However unfortunately Trevor Baldock in Ellen and Louise Edwards in Elanora, who were second and third respectively, had an issue at the top mark with Elanora believing she had mark room – she was however pushed out and the boats touched and a few choice words were exchanged.

Ellen recovered nicely, however Elanora then stalled the boat trying to do her turns and headed back upwind to round the mark.

Geoff Perry accepts the cash for winning the tune-up race.
Geoff Perry accepts the cash for winning the tune-up race.

By the time Elanora navigated herself around the mark she was well behind and lost any chance of taking the win.

With the racing once again held right out in front of the Goolwa Regatta Yacht Club, it was great for the spectators to be able to get so close to the action.

After the yardsticks were taken into account the final results were as followed.

  • 1st: Anoqua – Geoff Perry
  • 2nd: Wind in the Willows – Harry Cooper
  • 3rd: Ellen – Trevor Baldock

Congratulations to Geoff who managed to steer clear of all the issues and sail his boat clean and fast to secure the win, taking home $250.

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