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Wednesday, March 01, 2017

WA Moth State Titles


A small but dedicated band of foiling Moth sailors came down with friends and others to contend the WA States titles racing on the sheltered waters of Geographe Bay last weekend. Two river clubs were represented, Freshy and South Perth with sailors from Dunsborough and Mandurah as well.

Saturday morning was clear and fine with the mornings land breeze blowing across the Busselton Jetty and off to Cape Naturaliste. A late start meant that only one race was able to be put in and from the strong SoPYC contingent, Scott Sharpe sailed well to capture first place followed up by Jon Emonson and Max Pullman from MOFSC. The afternoons sailing, was much better with the seabreeze starting to curl around Cape Naturaliste and although Scott had to RAF on the second race and hand Jon the win, he still had the benefit of getting the moves on the rest of the competitors in the race. The third race was taken out by Max Pullman with Scott 2nd and Phil (Bugs) Smith from MOFSC coming in 3rd.  

Sunday morning dawned with an early start and the determination to put in a series of hard and fast one lap races to bring it to a conclusion. The land breeze was back and the windward - leeward course was sailed in 13 to 15 knots of reasonably steady wind.

Race one went to Luke Parkinson of RFBYC with Scott and Jon in that order. Turning the race around quickly, Race Officer “Crackles” Cracknel, had the next race underway and Jon Emonson nailed the finish, with Phil next and Scott third.

A small break to allow people to catch their breath, and away they went again with the third race taken out by elder statesman John Ilet from SoPYC, who started driving at 5 am from Perth and was ready and rigged by 0900 hrs. Luke and Scott showed their consistency, though Jon was not far behind. The 4th and final race was agreed on out on the water and the start was fast and furious with Kerstin Sommer from SoPYC managing to blow the start and have to return to restart. (A pity, because all regatta, she was the one to beat for starts). A hard fought race ensued with people taking advantage of the breeze lifting off the shore and Scott whisked across the line followed by Luke and Phil with Jon not far behind (again).

Consistency is the name of the game and at presentations, Scott Sharpe SoPYC, took out the states with a nett of 12 points and was awarded the “Silver Moth”. Jon Emonson of MOFSC came second (15 points) and Luke Parkinson from RFBYC was third with 20 points.

Well done all the competitors, and the people who came and competed for the first time on their foiling moths, learnt a lot about the characteristics of their chosen steeds.

A special thanks to GBYC who put me out on the water, to Murray who drove and to the dedicated race team headed by “Crackers” Gwyn Cracknel, that kept the regatta rolling along.


2012 WA Moth Titles



THE RACING WAS CLOSE. THE SPEEDS WERE PHENOMENAL. THE CRASHES WERE SPECTACULAR !!! And it all happened right next to Busselton Jetty, in the lead-up to Geographe Bay Race Week on Saturday and Sunday 18-19 February. The moths utilised a short course race format for maximum excitement, with 7 races scheduled over  the 2 day event.

The International Moth is a fast-paced, open development class that has attracted many elite sailors in recent years. These unique craft utilise hydrofoil technology and space age materials in order to allow sailors to reach unprecedented speeds on these carbon-fibre pocket rockets. With top sailors being able to exceed 60km/h, it is easy to see why Olympic sailors, world champions and professional sailors from numerous other classes are all drawn to mothing.

But it's not all about superstars. The 2011 Moth World Championships had a total of 110 entries, many of whom are just ordinary sailors. The spectacle of 106 boats running off one start line, all pushing 40 km/h upwind was something to behold. Due to being a very narrow and powerful boat, moths can be very tricky to handle at times. However, with a bit of courage, determination and practice, regular sailors can compete against each other in some spectacular racing.

Locally, the WA fleet has doubled in size in the last 12 months. With 13 boats with sailors of all ages, shapes and sizes regularly hitting the water this weekend, and a total fleet of 18 boats spread between Perth and Dunsborough, WA now boasts one of the largest fleets in Australia. This rapid growth has sparked local development of Moths, with modifications, upgrades and new designs appearing on many boats that will be competing this weekend. The local fleet has also recently been bolstered by the arrival of the current World No. 2, Joe Turner, who will be displaying his skills to the rest of us in the 2012 State Titles