Well if you had to choose to miss a regatta this year, the 2015 J/22 South African Nationals should not have been your choice! Seventeen highly competitive J/22s on a Durban off shore start line with brilliant conditions, good winds, efficient Race Officer and team, on shore entertainment and great administration all wrapped in glorious weather. What more could you want?
The results are proof as to how close the racing was. After the first day racing, the first four places were just one point apart and the challenge was on. The first day was not only close racing but also a lesson on reading the noticeboard before setting sail. The rounds were changed from three to two so after a general recall that also added some excitement when certain J/22s didn’t watch flags or hear signals sailed to the windward buoy unaware of the new start. Confusion reigned when leading boats headed back to the windward mark for round three, and the middle of the fleet headed for a finish line! The results tell the story that was debated long and hard in the PYC pub that evening.
Wednesday the wind increased and the sea became a washing machine, but the J/22s were all there to the finish. Vulcan Racing sailed by Phillip Baum with a new team combination of Dre Giovannini, Jemima Baum and Ryan Robinson mastered the team work and had a brilliant days racing with great results. Other than his first race disaster, Rob Willcox on Voo Doo with Richard Parker and Greg Outram were always up there with Us’n J, Graham Baker, Shaun and Barry Gurnell. The first three days results show that Amtec Racing – Marcello Marcia, Ullman Argo – Craig Millar, Laugh a Minute – John Bruckman were all in with a chance.
Thursday racing results put Vulcan Racing and Voo Doo in contention for first place; it could not have been closer. Friday, Vulcan Racing with two firsts and a second piped VooDoo to the post with one first and two seconds.
Hearty congratulations to both teams, awesome racing!
1st: Vulcan Racing
2nd: Voo Doo
3rd: Us ‘n J
4th: Amtec Racing
The MSC regatta met the wish list for all sailors, ending with a superb prize giving at PYC. Many thanks to the Bowman Yacht Sails for craning all the J/22s into the water with the help of Rob Samways trailer. Much appreciated. And to Dave Rushton and his team for setting great courses and running slick races. And the shore crew of Rob Pet and Lucy for all the admin and entertainment.