Sailors perform well at nationals
CAMPAIGNING in separate national championships over the Christmas/new year period, Big River sailors Glenn Williams and Colin Hinwood again proved equal to the challenge served up by their metropolitan and international counterparts.
For Glenn it was a trip down south, where he competed in the OK Dinghy National Championships, this year held as part of the popular Sail Melbourne regatta.
Colin, sailing with Richmond River member Bill Heuchmer, contested the Hartley 16 TS National Championships at Drummoyne.
Coincidently, both Colin and Glenn are residents of Ashby and both managed sixth place in their respective events.
The OK Dinghy is a 50-year-old single-handed design developed as a preparatory boat for the Olympic Finn class.
The initial popularity was affected by the introduction of the Laser in the 1970s, however, in recent years the class has enjoyed resurgence.
The Williams family has a long association with the class and the various state and national titles are the opportunity for Glenn to catch up with his South Australia-based brother, Brent.
For Glenn, this year’s result was much improved on the 15th placing at last year’s championships.
Citing improved fitness and better boat handling as the key reasons for his advance up the results table, Glenn is now looking forward to the upcoming 2010 World Championships in New Zealand.
Colin had a frustrating Hartley 16 Championships. Similar to Glenn’s experience in Melbourne, the variable and generally light conditions plagued much of the event.
Disadvantaged by a lack of local knowledge, Col and Bill struggled in the early part of the regatta but were then able to assert themselves as they became accustomed to the conditions. At one stage sitting mid-fleet, good performances in the final races pulled them to a creditable sixth overall and in the process they managed a heat win over the national champion of the past four years.
Having been in recess over the Christmas period, the Big River Sailing Club returns to its normal program this Saturday.
Sail training is available from 10am and this week is also the first Accessible Sailing day for 2010.
A club championship event will take place in the afternoon.