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Festival of Sails Day 2: Light on for breeze but a good day's sail

by Di Pearson/Festival of Sails 27 Jan 07:51 GMT 26-29 January 2023
Just Chillin - it's all you could do on a light Day 2 at the Festival of Sails © Salty Dingo

Day 2 at the Festival of Sails was one for a light touch on the helm, concentration to the max, weight to leeward and enjoy a beautiful warm day on Corio Bay - blue sky above with not a cloud in sight and flat water sailing - what more could one want?

The Passage Rating Series took on a Long Special Course in the Royal Geelong Yacht Club hosted event, but it was shortened when it became evident the wind gods were on holiday, not giving enough puff to make the full course possible.

Zen, the NSW TP52 owned by Gordon Ketelbey which took line honours in yesterday's Passage Race, won Division 0 in today's race from Andrew Smith's Melges 32, Cockwomble from Tasmania. Sebastian Bohm's TP52, Smuggler, was third.

Zen also took out AMS, which Victorians usually race under, with Robert Date's Scarlet Runner in second and Damian Thomas' PPI third.

Sean Kirkjian, a key member on Zen said, "The course was shortened as the breeze was just 6-8 knots. It bent slowly from 110 degrees to 350 degrees. It was a very nice day's sail though and it's always good to win."

Beneteau First 45s filled the top two places in Division 1, Bruce McCraken's Ikon the victor over yesterday's 180th Passage Race winner, Reverie, owned by Alan Woodward. Billy Barry-Cotter's Maritimo filled out the top three.

Under AMS, Phil Bedlington's BKT JAMHU was the winner from Ikon. Alex Toomey's Ryujin took third place.

Division 2 went to Ari Abrahams Xpresso, an X-Yacht design from Victoria. Xpresso also had the goods under AMS, which Victorians generally race under. Archie (Simon Bell/Jeff Sloan) were second under AMS with Executive Decision (Will Sheers) third.

"We had a good day. It was very light at the start, but we had a clear start and managed to get to the Channel first," Abrahams said.

"It got very light beating through the Channel. We saw a number of boats becalmed and others aground, so we were very careful. From there, the breeze filled in and we had a really nice clean sail around the rest of course, including a finish under spinnaker.

"The crew did well - we have four women on board from a crew of eight and everyone did a good job."

Abrahams ended, "I'm glad they shortened the course, because the wind was light and it was hot out there."

Division 3 is an all-AMS affair. Paul and Sally Nielson's Northshore 33, De Ja Blue, had the goods over Jesse Gerner's Spartan and Chloe Pewtress' Sundowner.

For the full day's results and more at the Festival of Sails, please visit:

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