2012 Melges 24 South Australian State Titles Day 1

11 February 2012

Hosting the Melges 24 South Australia State Titles is the world class sailing facility, Adelaide Sailing Club, home to the newest fleet of Melges 24’s in Australia.  The three day event kicked off yesterday with twilight racing in the  St Vincent  Gulf, a large inlet in South Australia bordered by the Yorke Peninsula to its west and the Fleurieu Peninsula on its east side.

Teams made the sixteen hour drive from the East Coast, some collecting boats they had stored after Geelong on route to join the local fleet. Sponsors of the event include the local Riviera agent, supplying the media boat, Copyworld and Adelaide Shores Accommodation.  The warm welcome provide by Adelaide Sailing Club has been great.

The 20-22 knot South West breeze was blowing consistently when racing started at 5pm.  Boats left the protection of the break wall through breaking surf to get to the course, which was set up within viewing distance of the club.  The lumpy conditions provided fantastic downwind rides, everyone racked down the back. Local boat Foxtrot, Dave Alexander at the helm led into the top mark before a spinnaker halyard jam allowed Jason Ward Arriba Arriba to surf past him taking victory in heat one.

The Nixon brother racing together on Accru clashed heads in a tack, retiring from the race with blood on the deck and concussion. Hometown crew Gary Shanks Outrage Us were also forced to retire with rudder damage.

Second place was Foxtrot and in third place Anthony Passmore Planit from Botany Bay Yacht Club. Big day of racing ahead on day two with three races scheduled and more consistent breeze forecast.