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Adelaide: We have a saying...

1 December 2009 Wayne Knill

Adelaide Etchells fleet

"Adelaide Etchells fleet"

We used to have a saying that if you ever wanted it to rain in Adelaide all we had to do was host a Grand Prix. We would go all the way through winter with just the odd shower and then on the day of the race the heavens open and a month's rain would fall in a day. I'm starting to think of another saying along those lines: if you ever want a storm in Adelaide, just stage an Etchells State Championship.

For years we have conducted our State Championships on the Australia Day January long weekend. Unfortunately, a few years ago, the first couple of days were blown out and in a desperate effort to get a result we ran five races back to back in very strong conditions. Not an ideal situation. So, after that it was decided to not put all our eggs in one basket and to stage the series over two weekends.

Of course that's fine in theory. But, the past few years we have had a run of great sailing weather; except on the weekend of the States heats ! And our first weekend of the State titles this season has been no exception.

We eyed the approaching cold front on the weather charts during the week with growing apprehension; the biggest one in months. Right on cue, Friday night the front hit and by Saturday the wind was due west, howling at 40 plus knots. No chance of even using the crane let alone hoisting a sail. We did manage to squeeze one race in on Sunday before the breeze picked up again and sent the fleet scurrying back into the harbor.

Any bets on what the weather will be like next time? (the second weekend is scheduled for 30 and 31 January 2010).


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