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Combined Clubs Long Race Series – Cleopatra reigns in Channel Race
Wild West and Wings Three lining up for the start of the Channel Race - 2015-16 Combined Clubs Long Race Series© Peter Campbell

Combined Clubs Long Race Series 2015

Combined Clubs Long Race Series 2015-16 – Three weeks ago the Mumm 30, Cleopatra, was declared Cock of the Huon in a lead-up regatta to the summer sailing season and yesterday she reigned again with a convincing victory in the first race, the Channel Race.

Cleopatra, skippered by Bellerive Yacht Club member Matthew Denholm, revelled in the light morning winds and then the freshening sea breeze that gave the fleet a fast spinnaker run back up the river.

In a fine performance, the 30-footer was fourth to finish in the 47 boat fleet ahead of many bigger boats and only 44 minutes astern of line honours winner, Tony Lyall’s powerful TP 52, Cougar II.

Cleopatra won the major AMS category of Group A on corrected time from Invincible (Harold Clark) and Illusion (David Brett) and finished second in the PHS category to Bob Willis’ Hanse 42 cruiser/racer Piong Bokunani, third place going to Illusion.

Cleopatra, skippered by Bellerive Yacht Club member Matthew Denholm, revelled in the light morning winds and then the freshening sea breeze that gave the fleet a fast spinnaker run back up the river.

In a fine performance, the 30-footer was fourth to finish in the 47 boat fleet ahead of many bigger boats and only 44 minutes astern of line honours winner, Tony Lyall’s powerful TP 52, Cougar II.

Combined Clubs Long Race Series – Cleopatra reigns in Channel Race

Ian Stewart’s Tas Paints tacks out of Long Beach, Sandy Bay – 2015-16 Combined Clubs Long Race Series© Peter Campbell

On a misty morning, the big fleet started in a light, seven knot south-easterly breeze which, unfortunately died away off Blackman’s Bay.

By late morning-early afternoon, a south-easterly seabreeze began to fill in, reaching 12 knots as Cougar II powered up the river under her massive white spinnaker with it UTAS emblem, and freshening to 14 knots for the rest of the fleet.

Cougar II crossed the line at 14:22:35, an elapsed time of four hours 22 minutes and 35 seconds for the 21 nautical mile course set by Race Officer Roger Martin because of the forecast light winds for most of the day.

Cleopatra won the major AMS category of Group A on corrected time from Invincible (Harold Clark) and Illusion (David Brett) and finished second in the PHS category to Bob Willis’ Hanse 42 cruiser/racer Piong Bokunani, third place going to Illusion.

Only six yachts currently have an IRC rating, with The Protagonist, skippered by Steward Denny, winning from Don Calvert’s Intrigue and Roger Jackman’s Doctor Who.

Derwent Sailing Club Commodore Steve Chau had the honour of leading the 220 boat fleet in Saturday’s Opening Day sail past and yesterday his Young 88 Young Lion was out in front again in Group B of the Channel Race.

On corrected time Young Lion, owned jointly by Commodore Chau and Scott Brain, won the AMS category of Group B from Silicon Ship (Clark Wyatt) and Footloose (Stewart Geeves).

The Fork in the Road and Cougar II fight for the lead at the start of today's Channel Race on foggy Hobart morning - 2015-16 Combined Clubs Long Race Series© Peter Campbell

The Fork in the Road and Cougar II fight for the lead at the start of today’s Channel Race on foggy Hobart morning – 2015-16 Combined Clubs Long Race Series© Peter Campbell

However, PHS handicap winner of Group B was the trailable yacht Ellusive, recently acquired by two former crew of ocean racer Whistler, David Aplin and David Cromarty. Second place went to Take Five (Ian Gannon), third to Off-Piste (Paul Einoder).

In Group C, PHS results saw a 12 second win on corrected time for Larry Duncan’s Tarremah from Peter Alcock’s Kindred Spirit, third place going to Trick Cyclist (Team Trick).

by  Peter Campbell

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