2016 Forward Sailing NSW O’pen Cup, Sydney Harbour
Posted On:  29/11/2016 11:32:10
The 2016 Forward Sailing NSW O'pen Cup, hosted at Manly Yacht Club, took place on Sydney Harbour over the weekend of 12/13 November. The regatta attracted a fleet of 63 boats, a record for BIC State Championships and a first time for the class on the famous harbour. Entrants came from all over NSW as well as Queensland, Victoria, Western Australia and New Zealand.

Saturday opened with a combined Fleet invitational race followed by two Gold Fleet and three Silver Fleet races. Glorious conditions saw the fleet working into a classic Sydney Nor'easter under blue skies which produced tight, technical racing.

The sailors and their families gathered at MYC on Saturday evening for the famous debrief by BIC Sport's Ryan Spring who was joined by four time O'pen BIC World Champion Kristen Wadley from Tinaroo Sailing Club, who shared her invaluable advice with the sailors.

Following dinner and a classic North Harbour sunset, Manly sailing coach Andrew 'Dolly' Divola hosted a presentation with America's Cup Legend Sir Russell Coutts, Aussie hero Tom Burton and local legend Lisa Darmarnin. These super stars of world sailing shared their memories of growing up with boats, their pathway experiences and their inspirational advice to the fleet of young sailors. Although their stories were that to marvel upon they all preached the same theme - "Don’t forget to have FUN" … if they're saying it we should probably listen!

Sunday was a different story with highly changeable conditions in the morning. It made for the perfect opportunity to host the Adventure Race. 30 O'pen BIC's lined the shore as sailors were split into pairs (first with last, second with second to last etc. etc.) and had a short running relay before a Le-man's start and a short sail around two Forward Sailing marks, not forgetting the 10 star jumps that had to be completed on route, before finally high 5'ing Sir Russell Coutts himself to complete the race. Well done to Jack Reid and Billy Gargett for taking the win.

The afternoon saw Race Officer Col Chidgey hunt around North Harbour for a consistent reading with Skipper Dick Holland on board Rahiti and a dedicated support crew working hard to make a dozen position changes. When the Westerly finally set in the fleet fired up and two Gold Fleet races were completed with sailors skillfully handling the challenging conditions to produce spectacular sailing.

The Overall Top Three
First Travis Wadley (Tinaroo SC)
Second Will Drew (Royal Freshwater Bay SC)
Third Burty Meffan (New Zealand)