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New WASZP class to excite Sail Melbourne

by Michael Martin 22 Nov 2018 03:35 GMT 12-16 December 2018
Tom Trotman from Sorrento - Sail Melbourne International © WASZP Australia

The WASZP class continues to take off around the world and Sail Melbourne International is no exception. The exciting one-design foiler class will set Port Phillip alight with some great sailing action for both sailors and spectators alike when racing for the WASZPs starts December 14, 2018.

Sail Melbourne will act as the final tune up before the WASZP Games in Perth 22-28 January 2019 and it will be exciting to see the fleet making the most of the competition at Sail Melbourne and the final hit-out opportunity ahead of the Games.

The WASZP is a new addition to this year's Sail Melbourne edition (13-16 December 2018) and has been added to the race program in response to its growing popularity and exciting racing thrills.

The WASZP is a one-design foiler with the competition a true test between the sailors and their skills. The class has been enjoying growing popularity amongst sailors of all age groups and different backgrounds, including Olympic class sailors, and has taken high performance foiling to the masses.

"The Waszp was the perfect class to transition into after moving on from Olympic class sailing. It is definitely the most exciting boat I have sailed and already has a great culture with the perfect mix of top class racing and relaxed social vibes," Tom Klemens (VIC), former ASS member and 470 skipper said, who will be contesting the WASZP at Sail Melbourne International.

"It's great to be back in the same class as a lot of mates I grew up sailing with and also to be part of a class that is growing so fast around the world. I am really delighted that Australian Sailing have shown their support of this exciting class in having it as part of the Sail Melbourne International Regatta. I have no doubt the class will continue to grow in Australia."

With entries still open, some the best WASZP sailors are expected to Sail Melbourne, including 2018 European Champion Tom Trotman from Sorrento as well as the top place getters at this year's Australian Championships.

Foiling is increasingly becoming a part of sailing across multiple classes and with the skills required it is also a class that is used as a cross-training opportunity to improve foiling skills by current Australian Sailing Team and Squad members.

"Sailing the WASZP has been really good for me as 49erFX sailor. It's good to learn how to foil and it is good practice to sail my FX as well", Victorian 49erFX sailor and Australian Sailing Squad member Tess Lloyd said. Lloyd sailed the WASZP at this year's inaugural Australian National Championships and finished 18th in the mixed fleet.

Australian Sailing Team's Matt Wearn, 2018 Laser World Championships silver medallist and Australian Male Sailor of the Year, also recently competed in the class at the WA WASZP State Championships with the class a welcome pathway as well as a valuable cross-train option outside of Olympic class sailing.

"It is exciting to see the WASZP included in the Sail Melbourne program. It is such a versatile product and with two rig sizes it allows youth sailors to gain an entry into the foiling landscape and provide a fantastic cross trainer to their youth campaigns.

"With the larger rig size it provides the same opportunity for sailors on the Olympic circuit to sail regattas around the world on a one-design foiling platform, which allows them to race without the financial strain of other foiling classes," Marc Ablett, WASZP Class Manufacturer Representative said.

"Most importantly though, what drives the WASZP class is the culture provided by the core group of sailors who sail the boat purely for the enjoyment and participation on and off the water. The WASZP is all about having fun and taking sailing to the mainstream through an accessible and affordable package, anyone can do it."

Designed and tested in Melbourne, sailing the WASZP is popular around Australia and specifically in the home of Sail Melbourne, Victoria and there are several clubs with racing programs in place, including amongst others Sail Melbourne's host club Royal Brighton Yacht Club. Sorrento Sailing & Couta Boat Club successfully hosted this year's inaugural Australian National Championships and Sandringham Yacht Club as well as Black Rock Yacht Club also have fleet racing out of their respective clubs.

Safety Beach Sailing Club and Indented Head Yacht Club on the surf coast are also amongst the clubs with growing fleets and with Sail Melbourne kicking off the Australia domestic season, it is looking like a sensational summer of sailing in Victoria.

Entries for Sail Melbourne are still open and you can enter at www.revolutionise.com.au/sailmelbourne/competitors

Sail Melbourne International 2018 offers a full program for Olympic and Invited classes and includes the Australian Parasailing Championships. The event is hosted by Royal

Brighton Yacht Club and will run from 13-16 December 2018 with the WASZP fleet joining the action from 14-16 December.

Entries for Olympic and Invited classes close Wednesday, 12 December 2018.

For more information and the Notice of Race see www.sailmelbourne.com.au

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