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Presidents Report

14 February 2017 David Ritchard

David Ritchard

"David Ritchard"

We certainly have had a jam-packed opening to the southern summer. Good numbers are sailing in Club events, and Regattas have been well attended.

Swan River hosted the Syd Corser, with Michael Manford winning. Chris Hampton took out the NSW States with a new boat (1443), which was completed only days before the event commenced. Jean-Claude Strong took out the Queensland States.

Despite the patient management of Ross Wilson, and the energies of the members of the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club, Mother Nature (in the form of the weather gods) did not co-operate. Ross commented that it was the toughest regatta he has conducted. Non the less, the cream rose to the top and GT did the double. Congratulations to Graeme Taylor, Steve ‘Mothy’ Jarvin and James Mayo with the stand in of Grant Crowle.

As we go to press the Milsons Goblets has just concluded, with 1442 Iron Lotus winning, great to see Julian Plante back on the helm.

In December, the biennial election of Governors was conducted, and I am happy to report that all six of our members who stood for election were successful. As we did not field ten active Fleets we were, as was the USA, only permitted to appoint one governor.

The Australian Governors for the upcoming two years are:

  • Grantham Kitto (Also elected Chairman of the International Governing Committee)
  • Cameron Miles
  • Chris Hampton
  • Phil Smidmore
  • David Clark (Member of the One Design Committee)
  • Richard Hammond
  • David Healey Appointed
  • David Ritchard - I have been co-opted as a Governor and Treasurer.

A long time friend of Australia, Tim Patton of Bermuda, has been elected and is Vice Chairman.

Our Governors, along with the five non-Australian Governors, are there to represent the members. Please address Class concerns to them. There is large body of work facing the Governors in the upcoming period, and we are extremely lucky and privileged that these members have volunteered their time to promote and support the Association. The next two years will be productive and rewarding.

A great sadness tinged with a deep sense of loss occurred when Denis Heywood retired as the Australian Measurer. Denis was also the World Measurer until a couple of years ago. He is a life member of the International body, an honour bestowed on him at the 40th Anniversary of the Australian Association held in 2013. At the recent Nationals, Denis was awarded a pocket for Life Membership. This is a reward he truly deserves. Some highlights of his service include:

  • Class Measurer since 1975, and Principal Hull Measurer since 1980 - measuring some 395 boats. Denis completed duties by measuring the three boats launched in December for the NSW States.
  • 16 years as Chief Measurer - checking some 1304 boats at World Championships.
  • Denis was also on hand to measure sails for members, and over the years only Huey would know how many he measured.

On a personal note, Denis assisted fitting out the first Etchells in Australia in December 1973 (KA1), and has owned and sailed one, KA13, February 1974 now that’s a lucky number.

Denis was always a humble contributor to our class, always a gentleman and ready to pass praise to others. It is a mark of the man that in his letter of resignation he closed by thanking the late Harry Sutton for introducing him to our wonderful class. He has passed measurement stamp No. 1 to Bill Abbott.

We will miss you Denis.

All the best for a great season…

David Ritchard
President IECAA.


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