Saturday, 5 March 2011

Aussie 18 Foot Skiffs: Preview of the Winning Appliances JJ Giltinan Championship

Gotta Love It 7 during the 2010 JJ Giltinan Championship. Image copyright Frank Quealey.

by Frank Quealey

A fleet of 29 teams, representing USA, UK and New Zealand, as well as Australian crews from NSW, Western Australia and Queensland will contest the Winning Appliances JJ Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship, which begin tomorrow on Sydney Harbour.

The first event of what is the world’s top 18ft Skiff regatta is the traditional Invitation Race to allow all teams to become acquainted with the harbour conditions.

Races 1 and 2 of the championship will be sailed on Saturday and Sunday before the first of two lay days on Monday.

Pre regatta favourite is likely to be the defending champion Seve Jarvin and his Gotta Love It 7 team of Sam Newton and Scott Babbage, but there will be strong opposition from a number of top class teams.

Current Australian champions Michael Coxon, Aaron Links and Trent Barnabas (all multiple Giltinan winners) on Thurlow Fisher Lawyers have had to overcome some gear problems in recent outings but are sure to push Jarvin, and anyone else, to the limits.

Past champions, Howie Hamlin (USA), who is a two times winner (2002 and 2003) and John Winning (2000) will each be striving for another win.

Both Hamlin (CST Composites) and Winning (Yandoo) have new boats built for the championship and have displayed the type of form in lead up races to make them definite chances.

Another strong team is Smeg, which is skippered by the current Interdominion 12ft Skiff champion Nick Press.

UK’s Andy Budgen (Hyde Sails), WA’s Grant Rollerson (SLAM) and Matt Searle (Red Claw Wines) will also figure strongly in the championship as they all have proven records in previous Giltinan and other international regattas.

New Zealand’s team will be missing three of their regular skippers but Alex Vallings and his CT Sailbattens team are sure to make their presence felt and uphold the Kiwi spirit.

There are several new and young teams contesting the Giltinan Championship for the first time and the 62nd contest should be one of the best since it was first staged in 1938.

List of entries and crews:

jeremy wilmot
paul montague, paul atkins

asko appliances
marcus ashley-jones
stewart wells. aron everett

simon nearn
gerard smith, keegan york

fisher & paykel
andrew chapman
tim baraclough, ewan duckworth

gotta love it 7
seve jarvin
sam newton, scott babbage

evan walker
ted hackney, jeremy roberts

jonathan whitty
greg dixon, james hozak

pure blonde
james francis
brad phillips, Cameron mc donald

rag & famish hotel
jack macartney
tom clout, drewe waller

red claw wines
matthew searle
archie massey, mike mc kenzie

sharks/coldwell banker
david haseldine
andrew wong, ian henderson

nick press
dan phillips, dave ewings

spectrum trimming
luke parkinson
nick daly. tba

tf collect
mark kennedy
tom anderson, ryan houston

the kitchen maker
brett van munster
darren mc kavanagh, tai elliott

thurlow fisher lawyers
michael coxon
aaron links, trent barnabas

john winning
andrew hay, dave gibson


queenslander 1 (q1)
david witt
alan mansfield, barry flannigan


black swan
david gilmour
fang warren, pete hariss

grant rollerson
anthony young, peter nicholson

Panasonic 2
scott glaskin
tba, tba


ct sailbattens
alex vallings
chris kitchen, joshua mc cormack

maersk line
graham catley
hayden whitburn, brett sellers

stunt academy
chris hirst
stu wilson, erwan grossman

david mc diarmid
andrew archibald, murray england


hyde sails
andy budgen
dan wilsdon, matt wark

peters & may
jarrod simpson
ian turnbull, adam ovington


cst composites
howie hamlin
fritz lanzinger, paul allen

kinder caring
skip mc cormack
jody mc cormack, matt mc kinlay

Race dates are:

Race 1 Saturday March 5
Race 2 Sunday March 6
Race 3 Tuesday March 8
Race 4 Wednesday March 9
Race 5 Thursday March 10
Race 6 Saturday March 12
Race 7 Sunday March 13

All races will start at 3pm, with the exceptions of Races 1 and 6, which will start at 4pm.

A spectator ferry will follow each race, leaving Double Bay Wharf 30 minutes before the scheduled race start time.

PS Podium Picking Competition

A unique and fun way to follow your favourite boat(s) in the Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship to be sailed on Sydney Harbour from 5-13 March (see exact race dates below) is to enter the Australian 18 Footers League’s “Pick the Podium” tipping competition.

As the promoters of the competition say: “It’s fun and it’s free to enter”.

All you have to do is go to and click on ‘video’. Register, click on “pick the podium”, read the tipping information and enter your picks.

The race dates are:
Saturday 5 March Race 1
Sunday 6 March Race 2
Tuesday 8 March Race 3
Wednesday 9 March Race 4
Thursday 10 March Race 5
Saturday 12 March Race 6
Sunday 13 March Race 7

Amongst the prizes are bar fridge from, SLAM hats and t-shirts, Red Claw wines, Pure Blonde beer and Barz Optics sunglasses.

Don’t forget: “It’s fun and it’s free to enter”

Aussie 18 Footers League