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26 April 2016 John Curnow

Top 40 at the NSW States, Lake Macquarie

"Top 40 at the NSW States, Lake Macquarie"

Photo by:
Kylie Wilson,

Kylie and I thank you for letting us get great shots, video and interviews. They are watched and read by many more than just the Etchells family, so we can assure you, it is way more than worthwhile. Your likes, views and click-throughs are wonderful and it must be everyone’s mum opening the stories at least a million times that are getting us the kind of stats we are enjoying. Seriously though, thanks. Your engagement of the media function means we reach sailors and enthusiasts the world over – cool!

It was truly wonderful to see so many boats show up this season, especially for the NSW State Championship. Well done to local legend, Peter McNeill, David Gleadhill and John Boyd for taking it out. Peter Merrington, Geoff Bonouvrie and Ian McKillop nearly got there to erase some of the pain of the Nationals and Goblets. Tango and Land Rat took fourth and fifth place respectively. How long before Chris Hampton, with Ian Walker and Sam Haines or John Warlow, lately with Ben Lamb and Curtis Skinner claim a major?

Congratulations to Triad (John Bertrand, Billy Browne and Jake Newman) for their win in Victorian State Championship. We hope that sets ‘em up for Cowes and another title for JB. Reigning Australian Champions, Graeme Taylor, James Mayo and Richie Allanson were in second place, with Land Rat turning the tables on Tango immediately after Magpie. The Jukes of Hazzard nailed fifth and then in sixth place was a boat not seen for a while. Back then they sure could sail and Damien King dragged Barry out with Ben Morrison-Jack and Simon Cunnington on board. Look out for them…

Also, nice one Michael Manford, Dean McAullay and Nicholas Gray for their win over in WA. Heart Starter and 1382 round out the podium. In seventh was Chilly Bin with Dirk Van Der Struyf, Gordon Blaaum and Sean Gregory on board. But for the ninth and tenth in their score sheet it would have looked different, but in that fleet there was more than consistency at the pointy end.

Also good to see Bruce Steel still getting Dragon Lady around the track. This fleet have the Nationals in a while and won’t they love it! Hot sun, arvo sea breezes and cold beer back at the quay. Winning combination right there.

The Brisbane Fleet Championship is just a heart beat away, both in terms of racing and road trip, so if you want some great sailing, RQ and the super-hospitable Brisbane fleet is the place to be this Winter. Many are using it as a final hit-out prior to Mooloolaba.

At the end of the year we’re off to Pittwater for firstly the NSW State Championship (25-27 November, 2016) and then in the New Year we have the Nationals 12-15 January, 2017). Club Alfred’s will turn it on. I met with the on-water team recently and they are fired up for us. All of which means – get there. Buy, borrow or steal a road trailer and make it happen at this former World’s course, or go the big tow from the Harbour…

If you cannot wait that long, there is also a One Design and Sports Boat Regatta at RPAYC on 21-22 May, 2016. More information is at

Rock on,

John Curnow

The Croc at the WA States

"The Croc at the WA States"

Photo by:
Swan River Fleet


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