Friday, 28 January 2011
David Suda and his aptly named Pacemaker in today's final race. Image copyright Teri Dodds.
by Di Pearson
David Suda and his Pacemaker crew proved too good for all the Sandringham Yacht Club entries they faced in the J24 competition at Audi Victoria Week, winning the week of sailing with a score card that included five wins in the nine race series.
With the pressure well and truly off, Suda finished a great week of sailing on Corio Bay with a pair of second places today to win the series from Hugo Ottoway’s Vice Versa by a handy six points.
“I thought on Sunday ‘we’re not going to win this’, but then we turned the corner and got three wins, so that helped us a lot,” an incredibly happy David Suda said on realising he’d won.
Suda told how he and Ottoway could not make it to the J24 Nationals, so both were determined not to miss Audi Victoria Week. “I really wanted to win against him (Ottoway) in Geelong, so it’s pleasing for my crew to do that,” he said.
Suda, who has been at Audi Victoria Week for the past eight years, said today, “we’ll definitely be back and we’ll be encouraging a few more J’s to come.”
Simon Grain (Make My Jay) finished third overall with a win in Race 8, four points behind Ottoway, while Kirsty Harris steered Hyperactive to a win in the final race for fourth overall.
The competition was always going to be rife, but it was not unexpected to find David Suda (Pacemaker) and Hugo Ottoway (Vice Versa) at the top end of the fleet.
Today’s conditions on flat-water Corio Bay emulated those of two days ago; light and shifty 7-9 knot breezes initially from the north, but moving more around to the east throughout the day in the Royal Geelong Yacht Club series.
Beating Suda’s five wins from seven races, with a worst score of third place coming into today’s races, was always going to be a big ask. Suda set a high bar with his well-named Pacemaker, even for Ottoway, who has had to play bridesmaid all week, apart from taking out the opening race.
Audi Victoria Week