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Flying Fifteen Australian Championships at Mornington Yacht Club - Day 3

by Jonny Fullerton 4 Jan 15:56 GMT 1-6 January 2018
Day 3, downwind – Flying Fifteen Australian Championships at Mornington YC © Sonja Dowdle

The Canberra YC team of Matt Owen and Andrew Reed have moved into a commanding position with two bullets on race day 3 of the Flying Fifteen Australian Championship held at Mornington YC on Port Philip Bay.

Two more races held in perfect Flying Fifteen conditions, the first race of the day, race five of the championship, was started in 12 - 15 knots, building to 15 - 17 knots for race six. A longer course using shorter legs but a triangle, sausage, triangle and work to the finish configuration, provided lots of three sail reaches and exciting downwind sailing.

Andrew Reed, crew on board the winning boat, Cool Change, describes their winning performances:

"In race five we started right down at the pin end, led round the top mark and on the triangle, the boats in front extend, so a couple of good waves and that was it. Some good gybes and fantastic surfing on the runs".

"We started mid line in race six and worked mid left, the boat felt really good. A couple of well timed waves on the first reach and we got away again. We had good boat speed and solid boat handling. It's a good atmosphere out there, everyones in a good space."

John Wilson and Matthew Summers from South of Perth YC are starting to string some consistent results together finishing second and fourth, to move into second place overall but 11 points shy of the leaders.

Sue Thompson and Cameron Taylor from local club, Davey's Bay YC also had a stellar day moving into third overall with a sixth and third today.

"In race five we changed places quite a bit at the front end of the fleet. We lost a few places downwind but gained them back upwind."

"In the second race we gained a lot of places at the bottom gate after the run, when we chose the opposite gate to the lead pack and came out on really good numbers. We stuck with it to pass several boats to move into 3rd. Two boats caught us on the triangle but on the final working leg we were exhausted but found another gear to hold on for 3rd."

Sue's son John Radnell, part of the colourful 'Flying Flamingo' crew, traded places with his mother in both of today's races. Skipper Lewis Davies and John fill in some of the details of their eventful day.

"Race five was eventful, we started second row and tacked for clear air, rounded around 10th, but I went for a bit of a swim, missing the toe straps! But we climbed back to 7th at the finish."

"Race six was glamour, we started at the boat end and took the right side and rounded second and stayed there throughout the race. Lots of good surfing today it was really fun racing."

The local lads move up to 5th overall, two points behind David Swan and Matt Elliot from Esperance Bay YC in WA, who had a sound day with two 5th places.

Two more races are scheduled on the penultimate day of racing to try and catch the flying Canberra team.

Results after six races (top six of 35 boats)

1 AUS4023 Cool Change - Matt Owen/Andrew Reed - (2),1,1,2,1,1 = 6pts
2 AUS3989 FFast - John Wilson/Matthew Summers - (12),6,2,3,2,4 = 17pts
3 AUS4007 FF - Sue Thompson/Cameron Taylor - 3,3,4,(9),6,3 = 19pts
4 AUS4053 Phar Lap - David Swan/Matt Elliot - 6,8,3,(10),5,5 = 27pts
5 AUS3890 The Flying Flamingo - Lewis Davies/John Radnell - 13,2,5,(14),7,2 = 29pts
6 AUS3880 Where the bloody hell - Craig Rainey/Ian Rainey - 9,5,7,(20),4,6 = 31pts