16 Mitala Street, Newport NSW 2106   Tel: 61 2 9998 3700

     

16 Mitala Street, Newport NSW 2106
Tel: 61 2 9998 3700

Checkmate Launches Aussie Assault at Pittwater to Paradise Regatta

Owner, Ray Roberts and crew of the iconic US-built Peterson 50, Checkmate are looking forward to launching the vessel’s Australian racing career in the 2018 Club Marine Pittwater to Paradise Regatta, which starts Tuesday 2 January.

Inclement conditions during delivery to Sydney from the Gold Coast resulted in damage that put the yacht, renamed Checkmate of Hollywood, out of this year’s Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race.

As Michael Spies, seasoned sailor and long-time friend of owner Ray Roberts, explained: “We were pretty devastated not to make the Sydney Hobart, but with the adverse weather during delivery, we just weren’t prepared in time.”

Instead, they prepped and sailed Ray’s FARR 55, Hollywood Boulevard, which finished 10th, and are now flying back from Hobart in time for New Year’s Eve on Sydney Harbour, then a quick scoot to Pittwater for the Race start on Tuesday.

Checkmate is a sensational dual-purpose boat,” continued ‘Spiesy’. “She’s a proper yacht – nothing like the disposable boats we’ve been sailing for 30 or so years. We’ll watch the NYE fireworks on Sydney Harbour then get ready for the P2P.”

With her eye-catching gleaming timber hull, 50-foot Checkmate of Hollywood, with a sail number well-known to TV addicts of a certain age: 90210 (the Hollywood post code), is a 40-year-old IOR Doug Peterson design, built of Brazilian mahogany in San Diego by the illustrious Carl Eichenlaub, and updated in 2000 to make her a fast, competitive racing yacht.

In October 2017, Ray “Hollywood” Roberts bought the boat from the Orange County School of Sailing and Seamanship where she had given great service following her donation by the previous owner.

Rising Tide of Talent - Club Marine Pittwater to Paradise nurtures sailing young guns

The 2018 Club Marine Pittwater to Paradise Regatta, commencing Tuesday 2 January, has its share of under-30s sailing talent in its ranks this year. Some are newcomers to sailing and others are seasoned sailors who have hundreds of nautical miles under their collective belts. All of them are primed and ready for the 2018 P2P, motivated by equal parts camaraderie and competitive spirit.

Seven yachts in this year’s Race have sailors in their 20s onboard, among them, Dreki Sunnan, formerly Victoire, the Beneteau First 45 bought in mid-2017 by Ken Holmes. With its Norse name meaning ‘Dragon of the South’, Dreki Sunnan will welcome onboard three under-30s, lured to the challenge by Ken’s initiative to support and train the next generation of sailors.

Named in honour of Ken’s father’s conviction that the family came from Viking stock, Dreki Sunnan has an enviable pedigree and crew that is half extremely experienced and the other half new to sailing.

“The majority of our foredeck crew are undertaking their first season of offshore sailing,” said Ken. “It’s part of the training program we have put together to get young people interested in sailing, and in particular, bluewater racing, and then train them up to a standard where they’re confident to take on the greatest challenge of all, the Sydney Hobart.

“We’re hoping to be reasonably competitive,” continues Ken. “The boat can certainly do it, if we can push it and get decent wind behind us. The yacht does well in heavy conditions – 25 knots and above. 

"We are looking forward to mentoring the younger chaps, both for their enjoyment of the sport and passing on the baton for the future of the sport.”

This year, Ken, an environmental scientist, will complete the race, “enjoy a few beers at SYC” then fly back to Sydney without taking part in Southport Yacht Club's Bartercard Sail Paradise Series. 

“Regrettably, I have business commitments and have to go back to reality! The crew will take the boat back and I will fly back.” A proud Blues supporter, Ken and crew will be flying the flag for NSW in this year’s inaugural State of Origin Trophy, hoping to contribute points to claiming it for NSW. 

“We’ll say it’s a bit of fun, but there will be a serious side to it now there’s a trophy up for grabs.”

One of the three young guns onboard Dreki Sunnan is John Lewin, a 26 year-old pilot based in Brisbane, in his first year of sailing and working hard to learn the ropes ahead of the P2P – his first offshore event.

“My mum and dad have been involved in sailing and yacht deliveries for many years, and they will be crewing on Dreki Sunnan this year as well,” he explained, adding that it would have been a “family affair” including his brother, Greg as well, but he had prior commitments and could not make it. 

John’s dad, David, and Ken Holmes have been friends since their Uni days, hence the invitation for the 2018 P2P.

RPAYC Awarded Level 3 & Fish Friendly International Clean Marinas Accreditation

The Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club has been re-accredited by the Marina Industries Association (MiA) as a Level 3 and Fish Friendly International Clean Marina. The Clubs facilities achieved an outstanding score of 96% for Clean marina and 93% for Fish Friendly environment. 

The Club is committed to caring for the environment through its continuous actions in recycling, water treatment, waste management and modernization of Club facilities. 

All Members can do their part with utilizing recycling bins provided on marina arm access entry points and preventing any spillages or waste from their vessels entering the waterways. 

The International Clean Marina Program is a voluntary, incentive-based education and outreach program. it encourages environmental compliance and the use of best management practices for marinas.
The focus of the program is to assist the marina industry operators in their endeavors to protect inland and coastal waterways by leading them through a voluntary accreditation process. The program provides an easy-to-follow system to develop valuable environmental management practices and rewards accredited operators with real business benefits.
 

Fish Friendly Marinas has been developed to inform marina managers on how to maximise the benefits for fish and recognise those operators actively working to improve fish habitat. Fish Friendly Marinas provides advice and supporting material to help marina operators incorporate beneficial outcomes for native fish into their existing operational plans, such as ensuring their marina is free from marine pests and providing habitat for native fish.

The initiative is attached to MIA’s International Clean Marinas Program and the accreditation is an add-on for marinas with Level 4 and Level 3 Clean Marina accreditation. It requires an independent audit to satisfy criteria.

It is essential marinas continue to set the highest environmental standards. Marinas are the ideal location for many community members to see and learn about native fish and the aquatic environment. Clean Marinas and the Fish Friendly accreditation add-on demonstrate that industry, with support from government, is best able to set the standards that meet and exceed community and government expectations.

The program is supported by NSW Department of Primary Industries; Fisheries NSW, Government of Western Australia Department of Fisheries and Fisheries QLD.

 

Anybody's Race to win!

The 2018 Club Marine Pittwater to Paradise Regatta, commencing Tuesday 2 January, is shaping up to be a race of stamina and tactics for the highly competitive fleet; many of which are of very similar size and performance.

From the Bay of Islands, NZ, Rp42 Rikki and her crew of 11 including owner and skipper Ray Haslar, sailed from their home base of Keri Keri Yacht Club to Newcastle, a 1,000nm journey ahead of the Race.

Ray, who has sailed a few Sydney Hobarts, including aboard Rikki in 2012, and competed in the Sydney to Southport winter race three times, said the voyage was “mostly boring” with barely any wind, until they hit a southerly buster just off Newcastle.

“That woke us up! We said ‘welcome to Australia’ and we changed gear and battled it all the way in.”

The crew has swapped Rikki’s delivery sails to racing wardrobe and will head to Pittwater shortly. “It was a very convenient route for us,” said Ray of the “nice triangle” from Keri Keri to Newcastle, where they cleared Customs, then post-race from Southport Yacht Club Marina, which is now operating as a Customs Clearance Site, back home.

Ray is confident Rikki will prove competitive in this year’s P2P, tipping the race record could even be broken by any one of the performance craft in this year’s line-up.

“We have a very experienced crew. They will fly over on 1 January, leaving the whole town empty! There definitely could be a new race record, it just depends on the wind and the currents. And they’re always against you!”

Returning to Category 2 sailing after a 10-year hiatus is Salvatore Ridulfo, owner of the First 44.7 Galileo. “I have competed in the Sydney to Southport before, but have been mostly cruising and sailing in Sydney Harbour for the past decade.”

Club House Reception & Entrance Refurbishment

Works are scheduled to begin on the Clubhouse reception refurbishment on the 8th January 2018. In order to facilitate the refurbishment, existing reception operations will move to the Regatta office on the Halyards Terrace from the 8th January until Friday 19th January 2018.


There will be NO access into the Club via the main doors, from the 8th January. Security and Sign in facilities for contractors and visitors will revert to the manual books and will be located on Halyards Terrace with reception.

The Whisper Mug

You are invited to enter the 45th Whisper Mug race: an enjoyable social race from McCarr’s Creek to Dangar Island and return followed by Christmas festivities and a prize giving in Halyards. 

The Whisper Mug has been a tradition in Pittwater since 1972 when the first race was organised by Sue and Neville Fielding in their yacht Whisper. Since then the race has prospered with fleets of up to 20 and a reputation for a highly enjoyable day out on the water.

This is a passage race from McCarr’s Creek by Scotland Island with Dangar Island being the only mark of the course. A shorter course is available for non-spinnaker boats to Juno Point. The course is long enough for a decent sail (spinnakers are permitted) but with interesting times as boats work their way round Dangar. Starting at 11am the fleet is normally back for in time for afternoon bite and refreshments in the clubhouse where prizes and a number of perpetual trophies are awarded.


Enter the Race today: ENTER HERE

About RPAYC

The Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club - RPAYC is a yacht racing and sailing club based on Pittwater.

The yacht club offers year round inshore and offshore racing, cruising, centreboard dinghy racing, sail training and courses plus has a large marina accommodating up to 352 vessels.

There is also a modern boatyard with comprehensive marine services to help maintain your vessel.

Membership, including family membership is now available.

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