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29er Nationals : Multiple winners on first day at the Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron

Day one of the 29er Australian Championship at the Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron saw a different winner for each race across the two fleets.  Conditions on Waterloo Bay were unpredictable with 25 degree wind shifts and eight to ten knots from the east, reported by Clarre Murray.


29er World Championship 2011 : day 2 Mar del Plata, Argentina
Photo : Matias Capizzano

Felix Grech and Jack Hubbard of New South Wales on boat Charlie the Pelican are leading the regatta after two races placing third and first in yellow fleet. “The first race we were winning until we were about 20 boat lengths off the finish line and got rolled by two boats and finished third.  We ended up first in the last race with a fair distance.  Good way to finish a day, good way to start a regatta,” crew Hubbard said.

It was tight racing in the yellow fleet with Jacqueline Gurr and Steven Thomas on Turbo coming from behind on the last leg of the first race to catch Grech and Hubbard along with local boat Unwanted skippered by Josh Franklin and crewed by Alex Gough on the line.

First time 29er skipper Gurr and crew Thomas, a member of the Australian Sailing Squad, were black flagged in the second race moving them to the back end of the fleet overall.  “We have no expectations,” Thomas said.  “We’re just going out and taking it race by race and having fun with it. If we get more conditions like today we’ll do pretty well.”  Franklin and Gough were also scratched from the second race for being OCS on a black flag.

In the blue fleet Angus Galloway and Lewis Duncan on Fighissima and Harry Morton and James Walers on Ship Happens won the first and second races each respectively.

“We’re pretty happy considering we’ve never sailed together before and Angus has never sailed a 29er,” Duncan said.  “We’re extremely happy with the first race.  Our communication’s good.  We’ve been mates for a while so that helps.”

Galloway stepped into Fighissima with Duncan just yesterday following a terrible accident at the Australian Youth Championships earlier this week which left Duncan’s skipper Tess Lloyd in an induced coma.  All the competitors are rallying for Tess and her family during this difficult time.
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