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OTB Weekly news and updates

Friday, 29th March 2019

Dear OTB sailors,

What an amazing weekend we just had at SYC OTB, with match racing, fleet racing, JDS and great tropical Autumn weather! It started with more action on the SYC Beneteau fleet on Friday evening and this time our younger members match raced under the fast setting sun. Our keen young sailors started arriving shortly after 5pm and gathered in the OTB area, while Ricky and James got a head start rigging a few of the boats. Once everyone arrived and got changed we gave a brief run down on how match racing works, then we grouped the sailors in to four even teams and paired them with one of our four skippers. 

Thunderstorms threatened towards the city and brought the wind around from 180 degrees to the NW, which made it interesting for the boats that were trying to get out of the harbour. Once the wind had settled at around 300 degrees, Nick Duell set the line and we started the first race in 5 knots and a confused sea state.

The first race had Alex Newman and co versus Harrison Sly’s young team and i think someone forgot to tell Harry that we were Match racing, so Alex took advantage of the start and controlled the race to the finish. The second flight had a pairing of Team Ricky versus James Sly’s young guns and Ricky showed his crew why it is important to stay near the start line in light air as they struggle to get back to the line in time. Ricky entered the box late and despite a favourable shift at the start, they never took their penalty and handed James and co the win. Don’t forget to do your turns!

The breeze frustrated the boats in race 2 and they limped around in 3 to 4 knots, before we decided to abandoned race 3 in favour of a BBQ back on shore. Alex and James’ teams secured another victory against Ricky and Harry respectively to share the honours, although the racing was much closer second time around. 

We were back at the OTB area on Sunday morning for JDS which was held in a balmy 10 knot Northerly and the sailors made the most if it, maximising their time on the water. The breeze steadily built in the afternoon and the first club race got underway in 18 – 20 knots, which definitely tested the fleets skills. Some boats made the wise decision to return to shore early, while the rest battled on around the track as gusts reached up to 22 knots, putting all our race volunteers on high alert.

The second race got underway with a significantly reduced fleet and the breeze stayed at a manageable but gusty 20 – 23 knots as the skiffs, Tasar and Laser fleets got away. Halfway through race 2 the breeze increased to 25+ knots and as the bigger boats were surfing across the finish line, RO Terry George made the very sensible call to abandon racing for Div 4, 5 & 6, as most of these boats were at the top of the course and close to the end of the breakwater. It was a great decision for the safety of the fleet! It was another fantastic day on the water and congratulations to all our sailors for making it back to shore safely.

This weekend we have our final Friday Twilight Fun sailing event and BBQ of the season and the plan is to have our first ever pursuit start, with an OTB stern chaser race. All OTB sailors are welcome and each boat will be awarded a different start time, with the slowest boat starting first and the fastest starting last. It will be a fun night and will finish with a BYO BBQ and drinks in the OTB area. 

We also have racing on the next two Sunday afternoons to finish off the OTB Autumn Aggregate and JDS will be held on both of these mornings.

I look forward to seeing you around the club.


Best Regards,

David Suda
OTB Club Captain



  • Twilight Fun and BBQ


  • Junior Development Squad @ 09:30
  • Autumn Aggregate Racing @ 14:00


SYC are planning a sprint series for OTB supported classes on Saturday 13th April.

The plan is for 6 short races starting from midday and there is a possibility this will be a coached event. Please keep this day free in your calendar and stay tuned for more info.


To keep everyone up to date with all OTB news and information we are going to engage the ENEWs function available for members at the bottom of the home page on the SYC website. Please subscribe for OTB ENEWS there to receive weekly updates like this one.


Guest Speaker – Robert Greenhalgh – Tuesday 9 April at 7:30pm

Robert was already one of the world’s most accomplished skiff dinghy sailors when he joined the ABN AMRO ONE for the 2005-06 Volvo Ocean Race. With no Volvo Ocean Race experience, the transition to ocean racing wasn’t an easy one, but … Read more.

Recreational Boating April Guest Speaker – Mal Hart – Wednesday 10 April at 7:30pm

Mal Hart, a shipwright, has been building and racing high performance racing yachts since 1980. Past builds include Scandia, Ichiban, Ausmaid, Volvo boats and many TP 52’s. When the GFC slowed this work right down, Hart Marine, at Mornington, started building pilot boats … Read more.