Commodores Report 2011
And it was – the same as last year. I?d thought of resubmitting a previous report because this year has been just as good as years gone by ? except maybe tweak a few numbers and change a few names. Then I thought I’d do a synopsis as this year’s report and here it is.
This year’s been great fun. Financially sound with an increasing membership. Plenty of good sailing. Well done everyone. That?s it.
Commodore 2010-11 Ar -
But then I thought of all the things that have landed me at this point. Being introduced to sailing by John in 1972. He had a small 13 foot wooden cat at Twofold Bay and we’d sailed on weekends. — For sale 16 ft Hobie, ring John (different John)—taking my 3 children sailing (their combined age 15)—watching the kids sailing off up the river in their Mirror for the first time alone (their combined age now 17)– being asked if I’d like to sail in a race for the first time (ha! that’s no contest; I’ve got the fastest boat on the lake? so how come I came last?) — once and only once overtaking Terry in a saber in winds of 25k, just before losing it —– going so very very very fast with only the wind for propulsion —- the great ‘discussions’ on the beach after a race and realising not one person there had the story correct —-sitting for hours only meters from the finish line in calm weather —-seeing the same course on the same lake and the same clubhouse every Saturday and seeing that it’s never the same —- not having to wheel our boats to the start line anymore —watching the looks of fear and exhilaration, panic and joy on my victims/crews face and thinking “they’ll be back one day”— the pleasure of teaching someone to sail, and the despair when they beat you— watching the average age of the club members go down. So here we all are, at the world’s best sailing club
These are some of my memories and I?m sure every sailor can produce something similar. Sailing is something that you can do for as long as you live and it’s something you never completely master. So Eddy, still a little way to go.
And let’s not just to pick on Ed. We tormented Allen with keeping the minutes, Neil we weighed down with a financial balancing act and Terry we entrusted with calculating the club champions and winners of all those fabulous prizes.
The regatta – so many participants and spread over the 4 different classes. Good wind for Saturday, and if you average the wind for all of Sunday it was all right too. What a great storm we had on Sunday afternoon. So many happy sailors with lots of “we’ll be back next year”. Thanks Roz for all the work in the club house and well done everyone who contributed. Life doesn’t get much better than this.
Our try sailing day — Sorry I couldn’t make it but I believe was a big hit, with a cast of thousands. Well done to all who ran a very successful day. Guna make it this year. Another activity along these lines our club is involved with is the primary schools CAP camp. It’s held in November each year and class 6 children from around the district gather to meet other children and participate in different activities. Sailing is one and for the last 6 or 7 years our club has been involved. So thanks to those members who can donate 3 days of their time to help show our youth the joys of sailing.
Thanks again to all members for a good year of sailing and tall stories, and same again next year.
- ild Helland.
Sailing season ends
The final race of the Wallagoot Lake Boat Club sailing season was held last Saturday. Club members decided to hold one long point score race rather than the usual two as it was late in the season and autumn breezes are notoriously unreliable. Sailors enjoyed a gentle, though variable, easterly breeze for much of the race. Unfortunately the wind dropped out completely as most of the boats headed towards the finish line leaving sailors with a long slow drift to shore. To add to suffering of those stuck on the water, preparations for the 3rd Annual Dragon Boat Regatta to be held at Wallagoot Lake the following day meant that there were dozens of idle paddles sitting around on shore. Luckily all but one of the 14 boats competing made it to shore unassisted in wind gusting up an occasional 1 knot.
The Wallagoot Lake Boat Club presentation day and social gathering will be held next Saturday at the club house starting at 12:30pm when the overall season placings in both the monohull and multihull divisions will be revealed. All club members are encouraged to attend.
Club sailing usually starts again in September and new members are always welcome. So, if you have an old boat hiding away at home consider dragging it out and making it seaworthy over winter in anticipation of a summer of fun with us on Wallagoot Lake.
Monohulls: 1st Rob & Sian Morton (MG14), 2nd Rodger Ubrihien (Sabre), 3rd Brian Wright (Caribou)
Multihulls: 1st Tony Hastings (Paper Tiger), 2nd Max Dogger (Paper Tiger).
Sailing winds down at Wallagoot
Racing at Wallagoot Lake Boat Club over the past few weeks was held in light to moderate winds, which was ideal for new boat owners to gain experience. The club was delighted to see the recently acquired catamarans and trailer-sailors take to the water. Support was provided by the club?s rescue boat and by the other sailors. The club?s focus on having fun was evident as leading skippers went out of their way to provide assistance and tuition during the races.
It seems each week the water is colder and there is less wind, so regardless of much enthusiasm we have for sailing, the end of sailing season is inevitable. Over winter the boats may be treated to some repairs and upgrades, ready to return on the last weekend of September.
The final races of the sailing season will be held next Saturday, 30th April. These will be Pointscore races, which count towards the Club Championships. Although the winners of the catamaran and monohull divisions seem secure in their placing, all other results depend on these final races because the 5 worst races may be dropped from the season?s score.
The final results will be announced at a presentation ceremony at the club, on May 7th. This will be held at the clubhouse, and include a social barbeque lunch.
Handicap start provides close racing
Wallagoot Lake Boat Club held two handicap races in a nice southerly breeze last Saturday afternoon, 5th March, 2011. In these races sailors are given different starting times and spend the whole race trying to catch up with the boats ahead of them. Of course the boats heading off first do their best not to be overtaken and, if the handicapper has done his job well, sailors enjoy some very close and exciting finishes. This was certainly the case last Saturday with a number of places in both races being decided right on the line.
“It was also very close at the last windward mark,” explained Tony Hastings, “in order to cross in front of a Sabre and NS14, I touched bottom near the shore as I tacked onto port. Seconds later Alan on his Maricat yelled “starboard”, as he and Ian on the trailer-sailer were on starboard and needed room to round the buoy. I tacked again, then back, and somehow we squeezed between the shore and the buoy 4 abreast.”
Despite the absence of some of our regular sailors – including Terry and Ros Kirby who were busy in the club house completing final preparations for next weekend’s regatta – there were more than 15 boats on the water in each of the two races. This growth in sailing numbers is encouraging, as is the range of ages and genders of sailors and crews participating in the competition this season.
The annual Wallagoot Lake Boat Club Regatta will be held on Saturday 12th and Sunday 13th March. Please contact Allan Holbrook 6493 8446, Terry Kirby 6492 7365 or Arild Helland 6492 2402 for more details if you are interested in joining the fun on the water next weekend. At this stage the Bureau of Meteorology are predicating a high of 26°C for Saturday and that sort of temperature near the coast usually invites a bit of a breeze, so fingers crossed.
Race 1: 1st Alan Holbrook 2nd Terry Ubrihien 3rd Tony Hastings;
Race 2: 1st Tony Hastings 2nd Max Dogger 3rd Alan Holbrook.
Sailing Lessons Lessened
The second day of Wallagoot Lake Boat Club’s sailing school was held on Saturday. After a theoretical lesson, a demonstration of tacking was performed, then each student took to the water with an experienced skipper.
Lack of wind lessened the sailing, as the boats sat idle on a glassy lake. While the students were taught how to control a boat, the weather reminded us that it was ultimately in control of us all. As a low pressure trough passed overhead, we could only wait until it drew wind towards it after it passed.
A Pointscore race was held after the lesson, in very tricky light winds. Although the low pressure trough drew a light westerly wind towards, the heat of the day generated uplift over the land and an opposing sea-breeze. The skipper’s challenge was to avoid “holes” of no wind and keep the boat moving around the course. This was most successfully done by Rob Morton on a Laser, and the Club wishes Rob all the best luck at next weekend’s Australian Masters Championships. Finishing in second place Alan Holbrook’s Mirror Miracle did indeeed mirror off the calm water, and miraculously glided around the course. In 3rd place was Tony Hastings & Rochelle on NS14 “the Power and the Passion”, which Alan quipped “it must be the passion moving you along; there’s no power today!”
The first of three Wallagoot Lake Boat Club Sailing Lessons was held last Saturday morning, 29th January 2011, in almost perfect conditions. It started as a lovely sunny day with enough wind to have fun but not enough to terrify our new crop of intrepid sailors.
In the afternoon, as the wind strengthened, Robin Foote set a great course for the club point-score race. Eighteen boats took to the water and, while most took to the start line to contest the race, a few others were content to enjoy themselves zipping about the lake.
We were very pleased to welcome two additional boats and their respective crews from Eden ? Chris Malcolm and Grace sailing a Taser, Robyn Malcolm, Brian Chadwick and Neville Cowgill on the beautiful ?Tippy Toes?, as well as the delightful remnants of the Dry River Sailing Club ? Bob Harris, Derek Lewis and Mark Roberts on their Sharpie. The Paper Tigers of Tony Hastings and Max Dogger were away at their State Titles, where they finished 9th and 22nd respectively. Tony also won “B-Grade” division.
A fairly strong north easterly wind made for challenging racing conditions, and Robin Foote and Louise Maloney earned their keep on the duty boat. The Sabre Sailors dominated racing with a clean sweep of places in the monohull division. Five boats were unable to complete the race which makes the achievement of placegetters on the day even more impressive.
Monohulls: 1st Terry Kirby (Sabre) 2nd Neil Fisher (Sabre) 3rd Roger Ubrihien (Sabre);
Multihulls: 1st Arild Helland (Windrush) 2nd Terry Ubrihien (Windrush)
Sabre Series sails circles
The second session of the Wallagoot Lake Boat Club Sabre Series was held last Saturday, 4th December 2010, with three more closely contested races. As these races are all sailed on short courses, with each race taking around 20-25 minutes, there is little room for error. In fact, even the smallest error can cost you a race, as Rob and Roger both discovered last Saturday.
During the first race Roger had a fleeting, but too close, encounter with a buoy and Rob had a fleeting, but too close, encounter with another sailor (it really was close sailing). This put both sailors at the bottom of the score sheet, even though Rob crossed the finishing line first and Roger crossed in third place.
Despite triangles being the dominant sailing shape, complete circles (ie 360s) also have a significant place in sailing competitions (come along to Wallagoot Lake Boat Club on any sailing season Saturdays and we will happily explain).
The excitement and intensity of the Sabre Series exhausts the Sabre sailors and rescue boat crew alike. In view of this, as well as a potential nasty storm which thankfully did not eventuate, the scheduled point score race in the programme became a “sail about and enjoy yourselves as much and as long as possible” session.
Much to the delight of the rescue crew many sailors took advantage of this situation, including Janet Watterson and Nick Standen, Wallagoot Lake Boat Club?s newest sailors on their Nacra 14 – with Arild offering much in the way of decorative adornment and sailing wisdom, and Tony Hastings and Max Dogger in the second most beautiful boat to ever sail on the waters of Wallagoot Lake. Next week sees the final instalment of ?The Sabre Series? for 2010 so stay tuned.
Sabre Series begins
The Annual Wallagoot Lake Boat Club Sabre Series commenced last Saturday, 27th November 2010. This series will run over the next two weekends and the Wallagoot Lake Sabre Champion will ultimately be determined from the results of nine races over three weekends.
The first three short course races were held in a strong and challenging north-northeast breeze that tested the reflexes, balance, and boat-righting skills of the Seven Sabre Sailors (Terry Kirby, Neil Fisher, Rob Morton, Roger Ubrihien, Ian Curtis, Morrie Lynch and Wendy Miller).
The Sabres were accompanied around their course by the spectator fleet of Chris Malcolm and Sarah Morton in a Taser, Gote Vikstrom sailing his Laser, and Brian Wright and Glyn Miller cruising aboard ?Dear One?. Arild Helland provided beautiful back ground colour, flitting about Wallagoot Lake in his Windrush, while Abby and Molly practised closer to shore in the club Pacer.
There was some very close racing, with the order frequently changing during all three races. Terry Kirby sailed very well to win Race 1 and Race 3. Terry?s finish in the Race 3 was particularly exciting as he cleverly edged the nose of ?Frodo? over the line at speed to win just ahead of Rob Morton in ?Red?s Legend?, before skilfully turning back onto the course to avoid a collision with the duty boat. Neil Fisher began well in ?Windsong? with a second place in Race 1 and a first place in Race 2, before capsizing due to equipment failure while he was in a good position close to the finish of the third race. Stage two of the series will be held on Saturday 4th December, followed by a club point-score race.
Race 1: 1st Terry Kirby 2nd Neil Fisher 3rd Rob Morton;
Race 2: 1st Neil Fisher 2nd Rob Morton 3rd Roger Ubrihien;
Race 3: 1st Terry Kirby 2nd Rob Morton 3rd Roger Ubrihien
Wallagoot Lake Boat Club rises to the challenge
The weather was perfect for sailing at Wallagoot Lake on Saturday 13th November. Two handicap start races were held, in which the slower boats were given a head start. In Race 1 there was a gentle and steady 5 ? 10 knot wind, while in Race 2 it increased to 10 ? 15 knots and was more gusty. This made sailing as easy as possible at first, then becoming both more difficult and more exciting.
14 boats contested the races, with classes including the Sabre, Pacer, Miracle, Cherub, Leader, Tasar, Caribou, Laser, Windrush and Paper Tiger. The variety of boats and skipper?s abilities tested the day?s Race Officer, Arild Helland, but he did well to adjust the handicaps and see a lot of close racing.
The Wallagoot Lake Boat Club welcomed new sailors, boats, and new configurations of skippers on boats. The Club also held a meeting, to discuss maintenance of the various aging infrastructure. We keenly anticipate installation of a new hot water system to provide showers, a task made difficult by the lack of mains power, mains water, and funds. Just as they do while sailing, the club is adjusting the rig, planning for changing weather, and looking forward to finishing with a great result.
Trying Sailing Day
Almost 60 people had their first experience sailing, at the annual “Try Sailing Day”, on Sunday November 7th, 2010. Strong gusty winds caused a few capsizes and some gear breakage, but also provided many high speed thrills. Alan Holbrook provided legendary sailing expertise, with entire families aboard his Maricat as he shot across the lake. Thanks to all the skippers who offered their boats to take people sailing.
“The day was a great success”, said Wallagoot Lake Boat Club’s Try Sailing Day Coordinator, Tony Hastings. “We’re delighted with the turn out, and encourage people to take the next step and attend our Sailing School in January”.
Weekend of Firsts at Wallagoot
“That’s the first time I’ve ever won a race!” Max Dogger proudly said, after winning the catamaran division in the first race at Wallagoot Lake on Saturday, 6th November 2010. In the light winds, cats and monohulls were evenly matched, making for close racing throughout the fleet. In both divisions the win was claimed by mere seconds.
In race two, Rob Whymark scored his first win on his new Impulse “Bunyip”. Again the race was very close, with stronger winds and varied course helping him edge in front of Rob Morton’s Laser.
The two races were set on courses tried for the first time at Wallagoot; a gate mark course for race 1, and an extended triangle course for the cats in race 2. The courses were set by Tony Hastings, in his first time as Race Officer for the day. Special thanks to Terry Kirby for expert tuition and help on the Committee Boat.
Race 1: 1st: Rob Morton (Laser), 2nd: Rob Whymark (Impulse), 3rd: Ian & Aimee Curtis (Miracle)
Race 2: 1st: Rob Whymark (Impulse), 2nd: Rob Morton (Laser), 3rd: Brian Wright (Caribou)
Race 1: 1st: Max Dogger (Paper Tiger), 2nd: Arild Helland (Windrush), 3rd: Jeff Hope (Windrush)
Race 2: 1st: Arild Helland (Windrush), 2nd: Max Dogger (Paper Tiger), 3rd: Chris Malcolm (Nacra 5.0)
Photo: The fleet was close in Race 1
Perfect start to the Season
The WLBC season for 2010-11 is now underway. On Saturday 9th October 19 boats took to the water to contest two Pointscore races. The wind increased from a steady light breeze, to a gusty and shifty 10 to 15knots.
There were spectacular moments, such as Eddie and James in full flight on their new Cherub; spinnaker up, out on trapeze, boat literally flying as the gust’s peak lifted them out of the water. They enjoyed the moment so much they kept going way past the wing mark until the shoreline obliged them to drop spinnaker and head back to the course.
The increased boat numbers are very encouraging for WLBC and bode well for exciting racing throughout the season. More boats on the water means more competition for sailors on the start line, as well as encountering boats on the various race legs and while rounding buoys. All these situations will offer WLBC sailors opportunities to improve their understanding of the rules and help develop skills in racing strategy.
New members and intermittent racers are always welcome; we will not be content until the entire lake is covered in sails! Turning up between 11:30 and 12 noon is ideal, as that’s when most people arrive and begin rigging up.
The races included many great battles, such as the Sabres engaged in their typically close race. The catamaran fleet included 2 Paper Tigers, 2 Windrush, 2 Maricats and a Nacra 5.0, with the battle for 2nd place most closely contested. As the wind conditions changed, it was the skipper who tacked to make best use of the wind shifts that won.
However, as Max commented “it’s not just the sailor, it’s the boat too,” referring to the advantage outright winners of both monohull and catamaran races had on their top-spec racing boats, with newer sails, lighter hulls and upgraded fittings.
Race 1: 1st Rob & Sian Morton (MG14), 2nd Neil Fischer (Sabre), 3rd Andrew Foote (Laser).
Race 2: 1st Rob & Sian Morton (MG14), 2nd Andrew Foote (Laser), 3rd Neil Fischer (Sabre).
Race1: 1st Tony Hastings (Paper Tiger), 2nd Arild Helland (Windrush), 3rd Terry Ubrihlien (Maricat).
Race 2: 1st Tony Hastings (Paper Tiger), 2nd Max Dogger (Paper Tiger), 3rd Terry Ubrihlien (Maricat).
Wild Wallagoot Warmup
On 2nd October, the first race of the season was to be a warm-up Handicap start race, where the slowest boat gets a head start. The weather had other ideas. A huge anvil shaped cloud loomed over the western end of the lake, warning of the hammering the boats would soon endure. At the time of the scheduled start, half the boats were upside down so the race was abandoned.
It gave the new boats a solid workout, destroying ”Goodvibes” jib and clarifying steering problems on ”the Mystery Tiger”.
Club sets sail
The Wallagoot Lake Boat Club began it’s sailing season on Saturday 25th Septermber, with a BBQ lunch. Three of the seven boats sailed on Saturday are new to the club, and were bought in the condition which Real Estate developers would call, a “renovator’s delight”. After friends, neighbours and tolerant employers all helped the skippers prepare their boats over winter, the day was spent testing and assembling various parts. Everyone helped each other assemble and engineer components to get the boats working.
We not only welcomed the Cherub “Saint Elmo”, the MG124 “Goodvibes” and the catamaran “the Mystery Tiger”, but also new members to club. Sailing offers a safe, exciting and social sport, with diversity of boats catering to people of all ages and sizes. Members of the public are invited to attend “Try Sailing Day”, on Sunday 7th November.