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Yachts take to Jervis Bay for the 2020 Cat Classic

posted Feb 8, 2020, 2:19 AM by David Churchward

On Saturday January 25th the Jervis Bay Cruising Yacht Club ran their annual Cat Classic Regatta around Jervis Bay. The race was run in conjunction with race 3 of the clubs Huskisson Hotel Summer Series and race 3 of the Tahmoor Rural Round the Bay Series. 

Six catamarans swelled the race fleet to 18 yachts on a fine day with light to moderate NE winds forecast. The 12 larger Division 1 yachts circled the bay anti clockwise, from Callala Bay, along a 17 nautical mile course. The 6 smaller Division 2 boats tackled a slightly shorted 15.3 nautical mile course. Six catamarans were included in Division 1, but also simultaneously raced in the Cat Classic Regatta.

With such large fleet racing the starts were staggered into 3 groups. Division 2 got away first with Trevor Smith, skippering Relentless, leaving the rest of the division behind and beating them to the 1st mark. 

Denis Meredith, helming Wotalife, chased Relentless as they ran South down the bay with the wind behind them. The lighter trailable yachts, Sirocco helmed by Pat Grogan and Brian Horley’s Reflections, revelled in the light winds; and racing closely soon passed Wotalife and Relentless.

Sirocco and Reflections would duel for the entire race, with Sirocco crossing the finish line 1st in Division 2 after 3 hours 8 minutes and 40 seconds, just 5 seconds ahead of Reflections. Once handicaps were applied Trevor Smith (Relentless) was awarded 1st place, with Denis Meredith (Wotalife) 2nd and Pat Grogan (Sirocco) 3rd.

In Division 1 the Navy entry, Friendship, skippered by Rod Targa, led the field at the start beating the rest of the division to the 1st mark chased by Into the Blue, helmed by Paul Gooey. 

The catamarans started 5 minutes after the monohull yachts, but Alan Leach in the catamaran Tranquillity soon passed Out of the Blue, just off Callala Beach. Tranquillity then ever took Franklin to led Division 1 as well as the Cat Classic. 

After rounding the Southern end of the bay, the yachts approached Longnose Point and the NE wind picked up gusting over 20 knots at times. Hauling into the wind, Out of the Blue passed Friendship but was then passed by Sas Sea, helmed by John Lawrence, off the Northern end of Long Beach.

Further back in the Cat Classic Regatta Lukim Yu, skippered by Peter Dunn, and Pleiades with Alan Neubear at the helm chased each other. At the final mark both catamarans caught and passed Out of the Blue racing to the finish line. Lukim Yu finishing just 2 seconds ahead of Pleiades.

Alan Leach skippered Tranquillity across the finish line 1st in 2 hours 52 minutes taking Line Honours in Division 1 and the Cat Classic. John Lawrence in Sas Sea crossed the finish line 2nd just over 6 minutes behind Tranquillity.

Once handicaps were applied to the Division 1 John Lawrence (Sas Sea) moved up to 1st place with Alan Leach (Tranquillity)in 2nd and Peter Dunn (Lukim Yu)3rd.

The winner of the Cat Classic Regatta was Alan Leach (Tranquillity)with John Lawrence (Sas Sea) 2nd and Peter Dunn (Lukim Yu) 3rd.

The race was followed by a convivial BBQ at Long Beach, where the days winners were presented with Crooked River wines from the sponsors of the annual club championship. 

Glen Pead (Media Officer)