Home » Dinghy » Hobie Cat Nationals: champions crowned

Hobie Cat Nationals: champions crowned

Racing in the 2013 Australian Hobie Cat Nationals in Adelaide. (Credit 2013 Australian Hobie Cat Nationals)

Racing in the 2013 Australian Hobie Cat Nationals in Adelaide. (Credit  Australian Hobie Cat Nationals)

After a week of weather that ranged to the extremes, the Australian Hobie Champions have been crowned.

Racing was conducted by Adelaide Sailing Club,  29th December 2013 – 3rd January 2014

For many in this fleet, the Adelaide Sailing Club event was “just” a warm up for the BIG event – the 2014 Hobie 16 Worlds at Jervis Bay.

We thank Hobie Cat Australasia and Hogs Breath Cafe for their continued generous support of Hobie racing in Australia. Please support your local Hobie Dealer and of course enjoy a great meal at a Hoggies near you!

Hobie 16 Champions
Cam Owen & Susan Ghent
Mick Butler & Worsty
Fletch & Georgia

Hobie 17 Champions
Glenn Lazzar
John Sims
Ron McDonald

Hobie 18 Champions
Richard & Rachael Quinn
Geoff Fiske & Sarah Newman
Jack Droomer & Lena Gautier

Wildcat Champions
Pete & Bailey Skewes
Bob Schahinger & Ken Hibbert

Youth Champions
Paul Darmanin & Lucy Copeland
Daniel & Nicolaj Bjornholt
Ryan & Annie Wilmot

Womens Champions
Michelle Bursa & Chelsea Haynes
Megan Bursa & Tegan Davies

Fast Old Blokes
Mick Butler & Worsty
Darren Smith & Taylah Woodhead
Andrew & Will McKenzie

Race day 1

The first day of racing in the 2013 Hobie Cat AustralasiaHogs Breath Cafe Hobie Cat nationals. The waters off Adelaide sailing Club greeted the fleet with crystal clear waters, blue sky and a gentle 5 knots from the south west. The breeze built slowly to a beautiful 15 knots with subtle hard to pick wind shifts, and the odd “pot hole” later in the afternoon in race 4.

The hotly contested Hobie 16 fleet has Cam Owen and Suzie Ghent on top after a consistent day, with their worst place a 3rd. Daz Smith and Tayla Woodhead close behind and Mick Butler and Worsty rounding out the top 3. From 4th to 8th place are only separated by 9 points.

The Hobie 17, 18 and Wildcat fleets are starting together, and in the light breeze of race 1, Glen Lazaar had the rest of the fleet how its done. Not only did he lead the fleet around the windward mark, Glen managed to edge out all the H18 fleet with a photo finish. Multiple H17 National champion Ron McDonald finished strong and is on equal points with Glen in the lead at the end of day 1.

In the Hobie 18 fleet, Quinny and Rachael are 1 point ahead of Fiskey and Sarah after some very close racing. Fletcher Warren-Meyers has set up a bit of a challenge for the Wildcat guys. Fletch reckons if an 18 beats a Wildcat around the windward mark, the the 18 fleet are to be shouted rums by the Wildcat sailors. While the 17s were left out of this little arrangement, it is fair to say Glen Lazaar will have plenty of drinks supplied tonight.

In the 2 boat Wildcat Fleet the day ended up with Bob Schahinger and Ken Hibbert on equal points with Pete and Bailey Skewes. Bob however must be thinking the new crew is too strong, with a torn main and a broken daggerboard making it an expensive day.

All sailors are heading to event sponsor Hogs Breath Cafe for dinner tonight. Great food, tall stories and racing reviews will be the order of the night.

Race Day 2 – Tuesday 31st December 2013

Forecast Temperature 37 degrees!!

The wind started to gently blow from the south and appeared to be the start of a reasonable day. The first race of the day was delayed for a short while waiting for the wind to settle in a “constant” direction. The Race Officer had his job cut out to set a fair course. The decision for all the sailors was; which way to go, left or right. The wind strength was about 8 knots with smoothish seas; however it was the first start that required an individual recall signal! Some Hobie 16s were too eager! There was a mixed bag of results but Mick Butler won out.

The second race was started in a bit fresher breeze and steadier in direction. No problem with starting this time. Still the top sailors are showing the way but this time Fletch & Georgia were supreme but closely followed by Mick Butler and Cam Owen.

The Hobie 17s, 18s and Wildcat start had a bit of argy-bargy which caused an individual recall. The stronger breeze suited the Wildcats and were soon clear of all the Hobie 17s & 18s. Some fabulous downwind spinnaker runs were exhilarating.

As is fairly typical of the wind on a very hot day and tending towards the south the wind began to soften but the previous races waves persisted which made for a bit more challenging sailing techniques. For the third straight race there was another different winner in the Hobie 16s, this time it was Paul Darminan with, guess who, Mick butler close on his stern.

As the wind continued to fade the Race Officer’s decision to call it a day was accepted with great relief.

At the end of day 2 the leaders in the Hobie 16 fleet has Cam Owen/Susan Ghent on equal with Mick Butler/Worst News. I can see an interesting battle emerging to be continued on Thursday.

Race Day 3 – Thursday 2nd January 2014

After yesterdays lay day due to New Years Day Partying the sunshine went and the rain came.

A mixed bag for the sailors in the forecast this morning for race day 3. There is a LOT of rain about, and its forecast to hang around. However, after a predominantly light wind series so far, the breeze today is executed to range from 15 to 20 knots, which might mix up the results as the heavier teams revel in the fresher wind.

The wind has not kicked at all. After just 2 legs the committee abandoned the race. A further hour PC hanging around out on the water watching the wind swing through 360 degrees and dropping out to nothing sad enough and the call was made to send the fleet to the beach.

Race Day 4 – Friday 3rd January 2014

The wind is blowing near 20 knots with about one metre waves. A big decision for all sailors but most have opted to give it a go.

Hobie 16s ,Hobie 17s and 18s will start. The  Wildcats have called it a day as the conditions are not good for them.

What a dominating performance by Cam Owen and Susan Ghent! They are well deserved overall Hobie 16 series winners even though they were only one of the few to capsize during the regatta. At this stage it could be a tight fight for the minor places, maybe it’s Fletch/Georgia or Darren/Tayla or Mick/Worsty. All will be revealed at the presentation evening at 7pm South Australian time. Fantastic end to the regatta which provided almost all different wind conditions which was challenging for all including the Race Officers. Well done to all.

Full results, go here.

By 2013 Australian Hobie Cat Nationals