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2021 Harcourts Hobart SB20 Australian Championship at Derwent Sailing Squadron - Day 1

by Jane Austin 6 Mar 15:17 GMT 6-8 March 2021
Honey Badger and Taz Racing Team - the two lead boats in the Youth Division of the Harcourts Hobart SB20 Australian Championship © Jane Austin

Hobart sailor Phil Reid (Mind Games) is leading the 2021 Harcourts Hobart SB20 Championship on day one of the 3-day regatta.

Reid, sailing with Rohan Langford, Amelia Catt and Harry Gregory, started the championship in fine style winning the first race ten seconds ahead of Honey Badger (Oli Burnell) and Wedgewood (David Graney). Race Officer Ian Ross kept the mark boats busy with two course changes in response to the shifty and building breeze and kept the over-eager fleet on its toes by bringing out the U flag and then the black flag to penalise early starters.

Langford, tactician on Mind Games, described a very happy crew. "We are very happy onboard the boat, especially with the first race - it was very light and very fluky, and the westerly was fading; we were towards the pin end and had a good start and managed to port tack the rest of the fleet and go from there," said Langford.

Mind Games was quick out of the blocks again in Race Two leading the fleet to the top mark from Wedgewood and Ambition Sailing (Chris Dare). Most of the fleet took the left-hand side of the course after the course change with Reid again leading at the top mark but Dare picked the shifts well on the last downwind run to score a solid win from Mind Games and Taz Racing Team (Will Sargent).

Race Three started in a consistent 20 knots after a general recall. Most of the boats took the eastern side of the river with Ambition Sailing winning from 2Unlimited (Oli Nicholas) and Imp (Andrew Smith).

Mind Games leads the championship on 11 points, with Ambition Sailing on 12 points and Karabos (Nick Rogers) on 15 points. Karabos leads the Masters' Division, while Brainwave, skippered by Clare Brown, leads the Women's Division and Honey Badger leads the Youth fleet.

Race Officer Ross was impressed with the SB20 sailing on show. "There are a few keen people in the fleet pushing for the black flag and keen to get their name on the trophy that's for sure. We had excellent sailing from Chris [Dare] and his crew from Victoria and Phil Reid and the team from Mind Games, and it was great to see the two boats from the north of the state involved in the championship. They [the SB20s] are such a competitive fleet...I'm looking forward to another great day tomorrow," said Ross.

Sunday's forecast is for variable winds to 10 knots south-easterly, becoming 10 to 15 knots in the early afternoon.

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