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Excitement builds ahead of the 6ty SB20 Tasmanian Championship 2021

by Jane Austin 28 Jan 21:36 GMT 30-31 January 2021
Expect some fast and colourful sailing from the SB20 fleet on the Tamar River at Beauty Point © Jane Austin

Excitement is building for the 6ty degrees SB20 Tasmanian Championship which will be held over two days this weekend at Beauty Point on the picturesque Tamar River.

Scott Glanville, President of the SB20 Association of Australia said it's the first time the Port Dalrymple Yacht Club has hosted an SB20 Class event and is testament to the growth of the Class in the north of the state.

"As an association, we are committed to building the Class statewide as well as interstate. We have one of the largest and strongest SB20 fleets in the world based here in Hobart, but we are keen to see the one-design sportsboat sailed on new waters both here and interstate. And to have the support of local business 6ty degrees as naming rights sponsor of the event demonstrates the local interest in the Class," said Glanville.

Victorian Chris Dare, sailing Ambition, will be defending his 2020 title with his son Lachlan and America's Cup tactician Ben Lamb on board. "The forecast is for light winds which favour the lighter crews. We have had very little sailing on the mainland over 2020 and we can never underestimate the talent in the Tasmanian fleet. We expect tough competition to come from current National Champion Will Sargent (Taz Racing Team), one-design expert Nick Rogers (Karabos), and Stephen Catchpool (Rebellion), who is in good form in the summer pennant series, but we can never underestimate the advantage that local knowledge offers," said Dare.

Chloe Fisher, a Youth Worlds bronze medal winner in the 29er skiff class and an experienced match racer, will be helming Short Circuit on her home waters for the first time.

"We are all super-excited about the regatta coming up north and a bit in awe of the teams that we will be competing against," said Fisher. The talented sailor and chemical engineering student has faith in her team's experience and understanding of the local conditions. "Fyn Harding is from the coast and has lots of experience in one-design sailing in the B14s, while Ryan Moreton knows the river intimately and is excellent on the main," said Fisher.

The 13-boat fleet includes five northern entries from the Tamar Yacht Club and PDYC and eight entries from the Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania and the Derwent Sailing Squadron. Crews will compete for the perpetual trophy, and prizes in the Masters, Youth and Women's divisions. There are now nine boats in the north of the state, some privately owned, while other boats are owned by Tamar Yacht Club and leased to members.

The SB20 fleet heads back to Hobart for the Banjos Shoreline Crown Series Bellerive Regatta from the 12th to the 14th of February and this will be followed by the national championship in Hobart over the March long weekend.

Glanville and the Association are keen to make another bid for a world championship for Australia in the near future.

Follow the regatta on @SB20Aus and results will be here.

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