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57th Cherub Australian Championship at Darling Point Sailing Squadron Overall

by Andrew Glassock 4 Jan 11:32 GMT 28 December 2019 - 3 January 2020

Thursday 2nd January, recharged and ready for action after a break from racing on New Year's Day, clear skies and 12 - 15 knots of breeze again greeted competitors as they headed out onto Waterloo Bay. Race 7 saw series leader 3183 After Dark Emma Harrison and Brendan Jenkins place 7th and Belmont sailors repeat a 1,2,3 at the front of the fleet with 3181 Schmicky Shmootin - Kris Fay and Matt Hall taking the gun, edging out 3171 Son of Wally - Trevor Fay with Nigel Blatchford in the bow and 3189 Hooligan - Beynon Telford and Morgan York completing the Belmont trifecta.

Race 8 saw 3183 After Dark - Emma Harrison and Brendan Jenkins bounce back to take the win, 3187 Squealer - Jessica Swadling and James Glassock held 2nd spot for most of the race but 3189 Hooligan - Beynon Telford and Morgan York after a tussle around the track managed to past Squealer to claim 2nd spot with Squealer finishing 3rd.

Friday 3rd January, the final race of the Championship saw a repeat of the conditions that had greeted the competitors on the previous race days. The variation being that Race 9 was a long course format race. The 3187 Squealer crew of Jessica Swadling and James Glassock were on the row 1 at the start and jumped to the front to comfortably lead the fleet around the first triangle and back up to the top mark holding out the hard chasing 3183 After Dark. On the run to the bottom mark the After Dark team managed to squeeze past Squealer and go onto a race win, 3187 Squealer a clear second with 3181 Schmicky Shmootin third.

Overall Results: (top three)

1st 3183 - After Dark - Emma Harrison and Brendan Jenkins (DSC) 12pts
2nd 3189 - Hooligan - Beynon Telford and Morgan York (B16SSC) 22pts
3rd 3181 - Schmicky Shmootin - Kris Fay and Matt Hall (B16SSC) 26pts

Full results at sailingresults.com.au.

It has taken 57 years but this championship was the first where female helms outnumbered male 15 out of 29.

The Cadet Champion (helm <18 yrs) was won by Maddie Lavis helming 3179 Between the Sheets (DSC) with Ben Lavis

The Junior Champion (helm >18 <21 yrs) was won by Jessica Swadling helming 3187 Squealer (LC12ftSSC) with James Glassock, this crew also took out the overall Handicap win for the Championship.

The Open Champion and best placed female skipper was Emma Harrison helming 3183 After Dark (DSC) with Brendan Jenkins

Cathy Pagett in 3177 Short Tired Emotional was the best place female crew.

I don't think there is any other open skiff class that is as successful as the Cherub class in gender equality and promoting female participation in sailing with cadet, junior, open and handicap all being won by female helms, with the veterans being the only omission to a female clean sweep of the major trophies (but it is just a matter of time).

Stats on the Championship: (Breaking down the entrants)

  • 4 were Cadets (Helm < 18yrs) - there were two 15 year old skippers
  • 8 were Juniors (Helm >18 <21yrs)
  • 6 were Veterans (Helm and Crew >28yrs average Helm + Crew)
  • 4 all female crews
  • 15 female helms

Looking forward, the 58th Cherub Australian Championship in 2020 - 21 will return to NSW and be held on the waters of Port Stephens from Port Stephens Sailing and Aquatic Club and the 59th Cherub Australian Championship in 2021 - 22 will be sailed in the West on Meliville Waters from Perth Dinghy Sailing Club.

Finally, a big thank you from all the competitors to the committee, race officials and volunteers of Darling Point Sailing Squadron for running the 57th Cherub Australian Championship.

For more information on the Cherub class visit cherub.org.au.

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