Loch Sport boost

THE catamaran national championships have drawn 40 yachts with 60 sailers from as far as Cairns, Yeppoon and Beachport to Loch Sport, bringing a significant economic boost to the town.

Sailors from the Northern Territory, Queensland, South Australia and Victoria competed over three days last week, with a spare two days set aside for washed out conditions.

Sailors competing in the Arrow (14 foot yacht with one person crew), Arafura Cobra (16 foot yacht with choice of one or two person crew), and Stingray (18 foot yacht with two person crew) classes enjoyed strong breezes for the national titles, which were held from last Saturday through to Friday.

Each sailor competed in nine races across the week, with their best eight results counted towards their score in the Arrow class while two results were eliminated from the Cobra and Stingray classes.

With two race wins, three second places and two third placing, Andrew Short in his yacht Slingshot held on to take out the Arrows title from Adrian Fawcett in Clockwork Orange.

Fawcett proved to be Short’s major challenger, finishing second on four occasions and third twice with the title coming down to Friday’s final race.

Fawcett finished second, with Short following in third, which was enough for Short to hold out Fawcett by a solitary point.

Jono Bateman, sailing his yacht Crazy Diamond 4, took out five races and placed in all nine to finish six points clear of his nearest Cobra Class rival.

Rick Nixon sailed Dreamworx into second after Scott McVey, sailing 2RC 11, struck trouble in the final race.

Brett Lienet, sailing Wild Turkey, took final race honours in the Stingray Mk2 class, but this wasn’t enough to bridge the gap to fellow family member Todd, who took out the title with Crash N Burn.