Challenging winds on opening day of SA Youths

by Harry FIsher - Down Under Sail

The Open Bic fleet saw 20 entries, the highest for any individual fleet at the regatta
The Open Bic fleet saw 20 entries, the highest for any individual fleet at the regatta

Challenging conditions greeted sailors on the first day of the SA Youth Championships, which was hosted by the Largs Bay Sailing Club.

The day began with a fickle west to southwesterly breeze as sailors began arriving and it looked like it was going to be a tough day on the water, however the breeze improved slightly just before the midday start time and racing got underway with no hassles.
 
There were some signs of a building sea breeze however the Bureau's forecast proved correct with the south to southwesterly afternoon breeze not reaching more than 10 knots.
 
420
 
In the 420 class, Matt Meaney and Sam Magarey in Mocean continued their good form from the SA Summer of Sail and lead the fleet with three wins from the first three races.
 
They are closely followed by Alex Magarey and Josh Gomez in Yahoo in second while Alex Higgins and Joel Mackenzie in Gill are third.
 
Lachlan Nairn and Matt Van Riel in Question Mark are fourth and are tied up in some close racing with the remainder of the eight-boat fleet.
 
International Cadet
 
With several local International Cadet sailors aging out of the class over the summer, the fleet numbers are slightly down on what they were pre-nationals, however the standard is still very high.
 
Luke Allison and Zoe Hinks in Hypknotic lead the way after a good start to the regatta, however Australian Cadet Team representatives Brooke Gaffney and Darcy Conry in Endless Summer are only a point behind the lead.
 
The pair have been crossing tacks all day and it should create a really intriguing battle as the racing continues tomorrow.
 
Emily Ward and Anika Faber in Elliot are sitting in third place while up-and-comers Jack Kretschmer and Bethany Clough in Tacktical are fifth.
 
Laser
 
A strong fleet of Lasers here this weekend have followed on from a successful summer at the Adelaide Sailing Club, which saw the class national championships and Australian Youth Championships hosted by the club.
 
Both the Laser 4.7 and Laser Radial fleets have four entries and the racing is close and exciting.
 
In the 4.7s, Tom Chambers from Goolwa leads the way, however he is only one point ahead of Benjamin Newman with Darcy Fewings and Sarah Dredge a little further behind that.
 
In the Radial fleet Josh Hinks has taken a strong lead with the first three race wins however a ding-dong battle has ensued for the minor placings with Alexander Newman and Angus Bubner only separated by a point, while Sarah Short is just behind them in fourth.
 
Open Bics
 
It was a great sight today with the Open Bics, which was the strongest fleet for any individual division, including 20 boats, two of which came from interstate.
 
Hamish Cowell from Blairgowrie in Victoria leads the way after winning the first three races, while Harry Mitton is in second on eight points just ahead of Nicholas Ebourne in third.
 
The fleet comprises of a number of sailors from a range of different clubs with the strongest Bic fleets coming out of Christies and Adelaide with a few more out of Henley and Goolwa.
 
Optimist Open/Intermediate
 
Between the Open and Intermediate Optimist fleet there's a total of 23 boats this weekend, many of whom have stepped up a fleet since last year.
 
In the Open fleet, Quinn Auricht leads the way by a solid margin, closely followed by Harry Higgins in second and Ben Hinks in third.
 
Myles Wilson and Taran Sanderson are sailing great so far and sit in fourth and fifth respectively.
 
In the Intermediate fleet, Connor O'Brien is in the lead and takes a slender two-point lead into the final day, while Murphy Cowen, fresh off an upgrade from the Green Fleet, sits just behind him in second place.
 
Finlay Bunt is in third with Charlie Piro and Ian Irwin in fourth and fifth respectively.
 
Optimist Green 
 
The Optimist Green Fleet was busy today with four quick races to start the day and all sailors showing great sportsmanship and enjoyment.
 
Fraser Baker from the Largs Bay Sailing Club leads the way by a considerable margin after a great summer, and with the improvement he's shown over the last couple years looks set to jump up onto the bigger course and turn some heads.
 
Dante Schnaars sits in second just ahead of Darcy Higgins, while a number of other boats have also shown solid improvement.
 
Results
 
For full results of the racing so far and to keep up to date with the racing tomorrow, head to http://bit.ly/SAYouthsResults

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