East Coast Championship 2024

Report by Optimist Class Representative: Justin Steele

Around 80 optimists attended the East Coast Championships hosted by Georges River 16ft Sailing Club with 36 open fleet entrants, 34 intermediates as well as green fleets, were all out on the water.  Darcy Miles (1822) and Ruben Steel (1879) represented RPAYC at the event in the Opti class and Charlie Snell and Olli Ross in the WASZP class.

ILCA Waszp, 29er and Optis fleets enjoying a cool sunny day on the water

The event attracted a high-quality fleet of optimists including defending East Coast champion Darcy Miles and reigning national champion Murray Duthie travelling over from Perth.  Some sailors using the event as their final shakedown ahead of the upcoming European Championships to be held in Italy at the end of the month.

Two races were held on Friday in light winds, outrunning tide on top of a big rainwater run-off played a significant role in optimum strategy with some interesting mark roundings in the light and shifty winds.  Sailors that could make early course corrections to account for the run-out tide were able to make some big gains, particularly on the downwind legs – a great lesson for the kids to learn about taking transits and sailing the rhumb line.  Tides forced some unlucky sailors into upwind sailing at the wing mark if they didn’t meet their goal on their 1st attempt.    

Racing was abandoned Saturday due to lack of wind, but race management was able to pivot to an early start on Sunday and hold four more races in a 14-16knot southerly to close out the final day. 

Well done to Ruben (1879) who ended up 4th in opens.