The Victorian Moth fleet was asked to sail a short course series at Sandringham as part of the Olympic classes Sail Melbourne series. The fleet included Richard Jackson, Paul Fleming, Andrew McDougall, James Owen-Smith, Kohei, Leigh Dunstan (me) and a guest appearance from New Zealand 49er sailor and moth champ Peter Burling, borrowing Martin boat. Rohan Veal ran the racing and did a fantastic job.
It's hard to paint a picture of how challenging the conditions were, with 18-20 knots blowing across the short slalom course with typical Port Phillip waves of close to 1m. The challenging part was the second and fourth buoys of the course were set 20-30m off a rock wall, to enhance the spectator appeal, with people looking down on the course from a balcony just above the bottom marks. What made things really interesting though was as you came closer to the rock wall the water became much shallower so the waves stood up out of no where and chaos followed at almost all of these mark roundings. These mark rounding also saw some serious near misses, with only inches in it. The course was also set to maximise speed with most downwind legs having to be sailed at much higher angles than Moth are normally expected to sail. I know my top speed was 24 knots, which isn't massive, but you park a rock wall in front of you when your doing that speed and the experience is certainly much more intense than it would normally be.
Read more: Moth Racing - Sail Melbourne