53rd Sabot Australian Championships Conclude
by Peter Campbell
Two straight wins on the final day of competition has clinched the 53rd Sabot Australian championship for 14-year-old Brin Liddell, sailing Speed Demon from Drummoyne Sailing Club on Sydney Upper Harbour.
While New South Wales and Queensland sailors dominated overall results in these eight foot long dinghies, Tasmania’s team had three sailors in the top 11 after 10 races for the 51 boat senior (one-up) fleet.
Sailing his first Sabot nationals, Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania’s 12-year-old Daniel Maree, helming Loose Cannon, finished seventh overall on a net 80 points.
Port Dalrymple Yacht Club sailors Sam Jones (Crude Oil) and Ruby Edmunds (Not Today!) were 10th and 11th overall.
Ruby, the eldest of three Edmunds siblings contesting the championships had two third placings in the regatta in an impressive sailing effort. One brother Taylor (Whisper) placed 23rd and the youngest, Max, came in 28th.
Brin Liddell, a product of Drummoyne Sailing Cluib’s renowned Sabot coaching clinic, was second overall going into the final day of racing on the River Derwent on Sunday.
Talia Bulstrode from Queensland’s Townsville Sailing Club had headed the leaderboard after eight races, but slipped to finish 23rd and 18th as the sea breeze freshened to 18-20 knots with just to 22 knots.
In the end, Liddell won with a net 19 points, a score that included three wins, two seconds and a third. Bulstrode, helming Wobbly Boot, headed the female contingent, finishing second on 41 points. She won four races, but lacked the consistency of Liddell.
Third place overall went to another Queenslander. Luke Richmond (Carbon Copy), representing the Southern Queensland Sabot Association.
The Sabot has been the strongest and most competitive junior sailing class in the Australian eastern states for more than five decades, producing many America’s Cup, Olympic, world champions and ocean racing sailors.
Olympic Laser gold medallist Tom Slingsby began his sailing in a Sabot at Gosford Sailing Club on the Central Coast of NSW.
By Peter Campbell