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IOM National Championship at Montrose Bay Yacht Club - Day 1

by Peter Campbell 16 Feb 2018 06:18 GMT 15-18 February 2018
Windy day on the Derwent for IOM radio controlled yachts - 2018 IOM ® National Championships © Robert Gavin

Winds gusting to 40 knots yesterday played havoc with the fleet of International One Metre (IOM) radio controlled yachts on day one of their Australian championship in Hobart.

The skills of their shore-based helms, men and women, enabled their the boats to cope with the difficult conditions.

However, one boat was lost as the strong winds whipped up short waves on Montrose Bay on the upper reaches of the River Derwent.

The most popular class of radio sailing, the IOM Championships have 52 entrants from every Australian State, as well as New Zealand and the United States.

Wind speeds averaged 27 knots and gusted to 40 knots, and as expected, yachts sailed with the smallest rigs available.

They still provided some exciting action as they surfed along downwind at speed on the swell. On upwind reaches many yachts were almost flattened.

After four races the best national skippers are quickly showing they are the ones to beat in the championship which continues through to Sunday.

Greg Torpy (Qld) is in first place on 5 points, followed by Ross Bennet, WA (6) and Paul Jones, NSW (6).

Tasmanian skippers are led by Lisa Blackwood in sixth place (12 points) followed by Rod Jackman, John Cole-Cook and Chris Wood in 14,15 and 16 place.

The internationals are starting to match local skippers with Philip Pryde (NZ) in 7th and Paul Johnson (NZ) in 10th.

"Not much change in the wind pattern is predicted for the next two days, with lighter conditions possible on Sunday, the last day of competition, RBRYC spokesman Robert Gavin said today.

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