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Inaugural O'pen Skiff Manly Cup at Manly Yacht Club

by Chris Dudfield 10 Dec 2020 05:57 GMT 5-6 December 2020
Inaugural O'pen Skiff Manly Cup © Marg Fraser-Martin

The inaugural O'pen Skiff Manly Cup, which incorporated the NSW Open Skiff Champs, took place the first weekend of December.

58 kids from all over NSW with visitors from VIC and QLD took to the water from Manly Yacht Club and East Esplanade beach. Different levels of sailing saw 25 in Gold, 23 in Silver and 10 in Green Fleets.

The weekend started with a race on Saturday morning in a light and fluky NNE wind that crept across the cove.

Saturday afternoon saw a steady and reliable 10 knots from the same direction but still with plenty of lifts and knocks making conditions challenging with a top mark that seemed to be beckoning the kids to touch it. With conditions looking very light for Sunday, Race Officer David Tallis managed 4 races in the afternoon to give us 5 in the bag on day one.

On Sunday after a fantastic coaching session with Breanne Wadley, the top sailor of the weekend and previous U13 world champion, and Ryan on sailing in light winds where we all learnt about "banging the corners" the decision was made to take advantage of having some wind by starting the day with a couple of races before an afternoon of fun adventure races.

A 10 knot westerly gradually built and by the time of the first warning signal was touching 15 knots. The first race saw the kids all "banging the corners" as the wind increased again, gusting to 20 knots. The fleets were able to complete one race despite the downward leg causing several boats to capsize. Silver Fleet racing was abandoned.

Gold Fleet started a second race before it too was abandoned as the wind strength continued to increase, gusting to 25 knots. Half an hour of strong gusting wind saw the fleet negotiating the ferry channel and an obstacle course of moorings and moored boats before all kids and boats were retrieved and back safe on the deck or beach.

The weekend finished with everyone, dressed in their Christmas best, 4up on an O'pen Skiff with no sail or centreboard racing around a course off the beach. Almost all 58 were able to squeeze on to the beach pontoon.

That's a wrap on this year's Manly Cup. See you next year!

Check out final results here.

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