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by Ian Grant on 24 Aug 2000
Andrew Leggett
American World title winning Farr 40 skipper James Richardson piloted his sloop Barking Mad to an overall lead in the International Hahn Premium Race Week championship off Hamilton Island today.

Richardson certainly had his equally competitive Australian rivals ‘Barking Mad’ when his mixed an element of luck with his proven sailing skills on a course which was littered with hidden challenges.

This was a race decided on a high degree of luck and being in the path to accept several dramatic wind changes which drifted off the edge of the lazy 3-6 knot land breeze.

Victorian skipper David Gotze played on the advantage line of the numerous wind changes in Brighton Star to come from what appeared to be a hopeless position to sail around the edge of the fleet to eventually score a deserved win.

Richardson and his Barking Mad crew chased all the tricky wind signs on the water to cleverly hold second place finishing just ahead of the defending Race Week champion Marcus Blackmore of Sydney in Emotional Hooligan while Stephen Ellis and his Buon Giorno crew placed their title in damage control with a last place finish.

The gifted Richardson noted for his skill in the art form of one design yacht racing has now wrestled the championship lead from his Australian rivals.

Barking Mad enters tomorrows testing 30 n/ml Baynham Island race holding a two point lead over Buon Giorno (Stephen Ellis,NSW) with Emotional Hooligan (Marcus Blackmore) another point away third.

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