Please select your home edition
Trident-UK 2012 May
Product Feature
Helming to Win by Nick Craig
Helming to Win by Nick Craig

Strong fleet set to contend Australian OK Dinghy Nationals in two weeks

by Robert Deaves 13 Dec 2018 22:53 GMT 28 December 2018 - 3 January 2019
Roger Blasse, 10 time Australian OK Dinghy champion - Australian OK Dinghy Nationals © Alex McKinnon Photography

With just two weeks to go before the start of the 57th Australian OK Dinghy Championship, the entry list is looking like a who's who of OK sailing in Australia, with 30 entries so far received. The championship will take place at Black Rock Yacht Club from 28 December 2018 to 3 January 2019.

The entry list includes the four most successful Australian OK Dinghy sailors over the past three decades, all of which are members of the Black Rock Yacht Club (BRYC): Roger Blasse, Mark Jackson, Andre Blasse, and Mike Williams. These four have won all but two national titles since 1995, and in fact BRYC members have won the national championship some 37 times since it first began in 1963.

Roger Blasse has the honour of having won the most titles in Australian OK Dinghy history. Since 1988 he has taken the national title a total of 10 times already and is now looking for an illusive 11th. He is probably the most successful Australian OK Dinghy sailor of all time, having won the world championship twice, in 1998 and 2013, though he hasn't won a national title since 2008.

Having sailed all his life and trained for his two world titles on the Port Phillip waters, he knows them well. Port Phillip is famous for its great sailing conditions, reliable winds and large waves.

"Occasionally we get days on end of sea breezes here, but it's quite rare for that to happen. More than likely you get a bit of everything. If a frontal system comes through then each day can be different."

One of the other favourites to take the title on home waters is Mark Jackson, who won five national titles in a row from 2013 to 2017 before losing to Rob McMillan in 2018. McMillan is unable to defend his title this year.

Jackson said, "We are very fortunate to have such a great stretch of water to race on, right on our doorstep. If the conditions are good, then it is one of the best places in the world to sail. It can also be really challenging, which is also good for us this year as many of us are using the event as final training before the upcoming world championship in New Zealand in February."

Mike Williams is back after a few years absence at the national championship. He won three back-to-back titles from 2010 to 2012. And with four titles under his belt, Roger's elder brother, Andre Blasse, is another favourite at the upcoming championship.

There was some indication of form at the recent Go for Gold Regatta at BRYC, where Jackson put together almost a clean sheet and won with a race to spare from Steve Wilson and Andre Blasse. A healthy fleet of 24 OK Dinghies is also competing this week at Sail Melbourne, sailed from the Royal Brighton Yacht Club, just to the north of BRYC.

The national championship begins with a coaching session on Thursday 27 December before the invitation race and opening ceremony the following day. The National title series consists of 10 races from Sunday 29 December to Thursday 3 January, with a lay day on New Year's Day.

The Notice of Race, Entry Form and current Entry List can be found here:

Related Articles

OK Travellers at POSH 2019
Mixing it up with 16 other classes at the Paignton Open for Single Handers Seven OKs arrived at Torbay on Saturday morning ready to mix it with a fleet of around 16 other classes of singlehanded boats for the first event of the North Sails Super Series 2019. Posted on 21 May
Open letter to World Sailing from OKDIA
OK class expresses dissatisfaction about the Finn decision I am writing in my capacity as President OKDIA, the International OK Dinghy Class Association, to express our dissatisfaction at the process and decisions taken by World Sailing last year to remove the Finn from the 2024 Olympics. Posted on 2 May
OK Dinghy Spring Event Preview
A busy few weeks ahead with a flurry of events to choose from After a quiet start to the season awaiting the return of the boats from the fantastic World Championship in New Zealand, the British OK fleet have a busy few weeks ahead with a flurry of events to choose from. Posted on 30 Apr
Fredrik Lööf is new OK Dinghy World No. 1
Only the seventh sailor to hold the No.1 place in the 14 years of the ranking list Lööf becomes only the seventh sailor to hold the No.1 place in the 14 years of the ranking list and the ninth to accumulate more than 1,000 points. With 1048 points, he also now holds the record as the highest scoring sailor since the list was created. Posted on 9 Apr
OK Sprint Championships at Burghfield
AKA The Burghfield Blaster This being the first open meeting of the year, many were put off by the forecast, whilst many other open meetings were being cancelled it looked like we were going ahead. Posted on 28 Mar
Individualistic choice of OK Dinghy Equipment
One of the overriding concepts from the man who created the class One of the key factors behind the astonishing worldwide growth and development of the OK Dinghy over the past 62 years was the intent that boats could be built by anyone, anywhere. Posted on 21 Mar
National 12s and OKs set for Burghfield
2019 Gul Series and HD Sails Inland Series kick off on Saturday The first event of the 2019 National 12 Gul Series and the OK HD Sails Inland Series will take place at Burghfield Sailing Club on Saturday 16th of March. Posted on 12 Mar
OKs at the Dinghy Show - Join Team 2022 now!
So why should you stop by for a chat? Fresh from the hugely successful World Championship in New Zealand, the resurgent OK Dinghy class will be exhibiting at this weekend's RYA Dinghy Show and invites all sailors to drop by for a chat. Posted on 28 Feb
Everything is OK at Symonite OK Dinghy Worlds
An outstanding success both on and off the water The 2019 Symonite OK Dinghy World Championship, which has just concluded at Wakatere Boating Club in Auckland, New Zealand, was an outstanding success both on and off the water. Posted on 19 Feb
Big Symonite OK Worlds fleet in NZ bodes well
The renaissance in the OK Dinghy looks to be assured after the Symonite OK Worlds in Auckland Three times Olympian, and now a top sailing coach, Dan Slater stepped into the OK Dinghy for the 2019 Symonite World Championships, and never dropped out of the top two places overall during the five-day regatta. Posted on 17 Feb