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START LINE ERROR COSTLY FOR PEGASUS.

by Ian Grant on 17 Dec 2000
San Francisco Farr 40 skipper Philippe Kahn and his high performance Pegasus crew were the star performers in the Telstra Cup Australian championship sailed of Sydney but failed to win the trophy.

The brilliant race strategy provided by Olympic Star Class Gold Medallist Mark Reynolds and the precision crew technique and sail trimming skills was clearly evident on the deck of Pegasus and proved on the race course where she claimed five wins from eight races only to finish second in the series.

There only blemish in a series which was highlighted by a perfect display of tactical racing in a fleet of 'clone' designed yachts was a 7th place in race five where Pegasus was judged to have broken the start and was recalled.

This coupled with the fail to finish in race three with a terminated mast ultimately proved the difference between Pegasus winning the title or accepting the second place prize.

Ironically skipper Kahn and the Pegasus crew produced an unmatched speed sailing performance over the final five races scoring a 1-7-1-1-1 with a borrowed mast loaned by eventual title winner Southern Star 2 skippered by World champion John Calvert-Jones.

Calvert-Jones and his two tacticians Colin Beashel and Grant Simmer failed to win a race however they relied on being consistent with a 5-8-2-2-2-3-4 to win the title by five points over Pegasus 6-1-17-1-7-1-1 with the Simon Whiston and Gordon Maguire combination third in Smile, scoring 2-9-8-4-1-8-2-8.

Today's final two races contested in a slow building 5-12 knot seabreeze produced the usual incidents expected in One-Design racing including traffic jams at mark rounding's, far from polite requests for sea room a collision and protests.

But above all the fleet match racing on the course was of a very high standard and exceptionally exciting.

However skipper Kahn and his Pegasus crew were an outstanding combination showing the skills which stood them in a class of their own winning both of today's final races by more than a minute over an exceptionally high standard fleet.

FINAL RESULTS (Provisional Subject to protests) : Southern Star 2 (John Calvert-Jones,Vic ) 30pts 1, Pegasus (Philippe Kahn,USA) 35pts 2, Smile (Simon Whiston,NSW) 42pts 3, Buon Giorno (Stephen Ellis, NSW) 43pts 4, Corinthian Doors (Richard Perini,NSW) 53pts 5, Fruit Machine (Neill Whiston,NSW) 54pts 6, Emotional Hooligan (Marcus Blackmore,NSW) 55pts 7, Syntegra Rapscallion (Dick Voordehake,NSW) 63pts 8, Leroy Brown (Warren Weickmann,NSW) 75pts 9, Brighton Star (David Gotze,Vic) 10.

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