Bandits Hard Earned Hat Trick Day Two of Melges 24 Nationals

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25 January 2013

Teams congregated on the dock drinking coffee on the morning of day two of the Parks Victoria Melges 24 Australian Championship, racing postponed briefly due to the forecast Southerly front.

The front came through Corio Bay from the South as the fleet left the dock at 11:20 am and headed over to course A for three scheduled races. The wind came through at eighteen to twenty knots and then steadily built as the day went on, picking up the chop at the bottom of the course and gusting to the high twenties.  

Racing was hard and physically demanding on all crews as they fought the elements and pushed the boats to the limits. Young Opti sailor James Huon’s endurance and focus through the three races onboard Huey II was admirable.

Race three got under way as a forty degree south easterly shift came across the course, the race committee abandoning the race up the beat to move the boat and restart.  

Warwick Rooklyn’s Bandit seemed to revel in the conditions, his crew’s experience and time in the boat set them up for three wins in extremely testing conditions.  

Chris Links’ Northshore Marine finished the day with two seconds and a forth after jumping the start in race five, now on equal points with Bandit heading into day three.

The Nixon team Accru are in the hunt in third place half way through the regatta, their results improving as the day progressed.  

There were plenty of thrills and spills as the crews landed on the dock at 6:30 pm exhausted with big smiles and big stories about the downhill rides from an epic day of racing. Dale Farrimond’s Vitesse summed up the day, “Melges sailors are a rare breed…we get belted all day in three races are and ready to go out again tomorrow! Great work everyone”