November 24 - 30, 2019: Issue 430
Spring Becomes Summer In Pittwater
Save Grevillea Caleyi With PNHA's Baha'i Bushcare This Monday: November 25th
First Christmas Beetle Spotted At Elanora Heights/ Ingleside
Please Keep Your Bird Baths Topped Up Or Put Out Dishes Of Water For Local Fauna On Hot Days
RPAYC Hosts The 27th Harken International Youth Match Racing Championship On Pittwater
An international cast has taken to the race course on Pittwater for the 27th Harken International Youth Match Racing Championship, to be hosted by the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club (RPAYC) from 20-24 November, 2019.
An even split of Australian and international teams will be in line for a cash price of $1200 to the winning team, $800 for the runner-up, while $500 will go to the most improved.
A Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron team, skippered by Jordon Stevenson, took the trophy home last year. Be warned, the home of the America’s Cup is back to compete with two teams whose skippers are Robert McCutcheon and Alastair Gifford.
However, the top ranked crew is that of Wales’ Penarth Yacht Club. Matthew Whitfield’s team is 20th in the official World Sailing Match Racing Rankings, followed by an Australian team from the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia, skippered by Hugo Stoner, ranked 103rd.
Other clubs represented include two from the host, RPAYC, to be skippered by Juliet Costanzo and Alistair Reed respectively, with one each from Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron (Jed Cruickshank) and Darwin Sailing Club (Finn Niemeier).
The internationals line-up is completed by a team each from Royal Port Nicholson Yacht Club in New Zealand (Jonathon Barnett) and Ireland’s Royal Irish Yacht Club (Niall Malone).
The star-studded line-up of 10 youth (under 23) teams from both local and international clubs came together to socialise, meet each other and members of the club at the pre regatta official welcome function before the competition started.
Commodore Michael Lockley welcomed competitors, members and guests to the event before handing over to Harken's National Sales and Technical Manager Callum Cecil who reiterated Harken's support of the event and Harken's ongoing commitment to sailing from the youth and dinghy level all the way through to the Grand Prix and Americas Cup.
The highlight of the evening was special guests from Australian SailGP Team, skipper Tom Slingsby and Trimmer Ky Hurst; who brought along their newest piece of silverware to add to their ‘poolroom’, the magnificent ‘Sail Grand Prix Championship Trophy (Sail GP).
Slingsby and his Australian SailGP crew, including Hurst, won the inaugural SailGP this year and the pair is looked up to by sailors around the world for their various sporting achievements.
The event highlights where this current group of youth sailors can end up down the track. It also supports the importance of encouraging youths to continue on with competitive sailing and to dream big, as did previous competitors who have gone on to carve a name for themselves. The winner of the 2017 Harken, Leonard Takahashi subsequently went on to sail for the Japanese SailGP team.
SailGP Australia's Tom Slingsby and Ky Hurst with RAPYC's Tom Spithill - RPAYC photo