RPAYC Crew New Match Racing Champs
by Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania
Talented young sailor from Sydney’s Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club, Clare Costanzo and here crew today became the 2016 Australian Women’s Match Racing Champions on Hobart’s River Derwent.
The RPAYC team beat another Sydney crew, Caitlin Tames, from the Cruising Yacht CLub of Australia’s Youth Sailing Academy 2-0 in the Grand Final at the end of hard sailing in a gusty 25 knot nor’wester.
However, the luckless skipper was Costanzo’s club mate, Sarah Parker, who spectacularly crashed out of contention in her semi-final against Tames.
Parker had come through two round-robins with 12 wins, as did Costanzo, and looked near certain to win the semi-final against Tames, taking out the first match and holding a substantial lead in the second as she neared the finish.
Caught by a sharp gust, Parker’s spinnaker got out of control, the boat went into a massive ‘chinese’ gybe and Parker fell overboard, hanging on the transom.
With her crew unable to drop the spinnaker, Parker was being dragged astern in the chilly waters of the Derwent. Eventually, she let go and swam to a nearby official boat as Tames surfed past to make the score 1-all.
Parker and her crew fought valiantly in the third match, but appeared rather shaken up by their ordeal, going down 2-0 in the semi-final.
However Tames was no match for Costanzo in the grand final losing 2-0 while Parker’s regained their composure to win the petit final against Sam Bailey and her crew of Jill Abel, Kirsty Gray and Amelia Catt from the Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania/Athena Sailing, 2-0.
Clare Costanzo and Sarah Parker each scored 12 wins in the two round-robins, Bailey and Tames had seven wins each while Vanessa Dudley (Middle Harbour Amateur Sailing Club) scored six wins.
Light winds featured on the first two days of the championship, but today it blew and blew.
Pictured, women’s match racing champion Clare Contanzo and her crew on the River Derwent.