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Thursday, March 2, 2017

Asko Dominates Race 5 at JJ Giltinan Championship, Sydney Harbour

18ft Skiffs, 2017 JJ Giltinan Championship, Race 5
Thursday, 2 March 2017, Sydney Harbour
Photo: Frank Quealey/18 Foot Skiff League
The Asko Appliances team totally dominated the international fleet with a brilliant victory in Race 5 of the 2017 JJ Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship on Sydney Harbour today.
Photo: Frank Quealey/18 Foot Skiff League
Sailing a four lap windward-return course in a 5-7 knot Easterly wind, Marcus Ashley-Jones, Seve Jarvin and Jeronimo Harrison grabbed the lead at the second windward mark then raced away to win by three minutes and 11 seconds.
Photo: Frank Quealey/18 Foot Skiff League
Former JJ Giltinan champion Howie Hamlin (USA), Dan Phillips and Skipe McCormack finished second in Harken, with New Zealand’s C-Tech (Alex Vallings, Shayne Young, Scott Barnes) a further two minutes and eight seconds back in third place. Peroni (Nick Daly) was a close fourth, just ahead of Thurlow Fisher Lawyers (Michael Coxon) and Noakes Youth (Ash Rooklyn).
Photo: Frank Quealey/18 Foot Skiff League
In a race which saw some disappointing performances by a few of the top teams, provisional series leader (after discards) is New Zealand’s Yamaha (David McDiarmid) on 9.33 points, followed by Thurlow Fisher Lawyers on 10, Smeg (Lee Knapton) on 16, Asko Appliances 18, C-Tech 19 and Coopers 62-Rag & Famish Hotel (Jack Macartney) on 20.
Photo: Frank Quealey/18 Foot Skiff League
The consistent Coopers-Rag team outworked their opposition and grabbed a 20s lead over Asko at the first windward mark, followed by Noakes Youth, Harken and New Zealand’s Knight Frank (Riley Dean). Coopers-Rag & Famish continued to maintain a clear lead at the bottom mark on the first lap from a tightly bunched group of challengers, led by Asko Appliances.
Photo: Frank Quealey/18 Foot Skiff League
On the second windward beat, Asko’s dominance came to the fore and the skiff opened up a break over the early leader Coopers-Rag & Famish, Noakes Youth, Harken, Smeg, Peroni, Knight Frank and Thurlow Fisher Lawyers.
Photo: Frank Quealey/18 Foot Skiff League
Asko’s lead increased to two minutes at the bottom mark on lap 2, then to a massive three minute 15 seconds at the bottom mark on the following lap. Harken had moved into second place at that point and was a further 2minutes ahead of Peroni, which led the rest of the fleet.
Photo: Frank Quealey/18 Foot Skiff League
Thurlow Fisher, C-Tech and Smeg improved their positions on this lap and the battle for points was going to produce some very tight racing in the pack. When the fleet turned for home, Asko was clear of Harken with Peroni in third place, but the New Zealand team on C-Tech was coming home fast and grabbed Peroni just short of the finishing line.
Photo: Frank Quealey/18 Foot Skiff League
With two more races to be sailed on the weekend, a protest and an appeal of a protest decision to be heard tomorrow (Friday) it is almost certain that the overall result won’t be decided until Sunday.
Frank Quealey

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