Etchells Nationals: Notice of Race available, online entry open

Zhik Etchells Nationals, expected 80 boat fleet to battle for title on offshore course - Zhik Etchells 2012 Australian Championship
Damian Devine
The Notice of Race and online entry system for the Zhik Etchells 2012 Australian Championship, to be held from 9th to 14th February at Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club, is now available on the event website.

With the Etchells World Championship in Sydney immediately following the national championship, Regatta Director David Ritchard expects over 80 international and Australian entries in the Australian Championship.


'We expect many of the chaps that competed in the November NSW States will be back again for the Nationals. John Bertrand, Cameron Miles, Jud Smith, Tom King and more will be there along with some of the fellows that weren’t able to make it here in November.

'The welcome mat will also be out for all Australian fleet members so hopefully many of them, even if they don’t qualify for the Worlds, will still compete in the Nationals,' Ritchard said.

Registration for the Australian Championship will be on Thursday ninth and Friday 10th February.

Ritchard advised World Championship pre-measurement will also be conducted from Monday sixth to Thursday ninth. 'The pre-measurement will involve measuring the physical attributes of the boats; it is weighed and then it’s compliance certificate checked along with bulkheads and safety equipment. We may also measure mast bury, but we will not be measuring sails.

'The plan is to do as many boats as possible before the sailing commences for the Nationals so that it takes the load off when the boats go down to Sydney,' Ritchard said.

Zhik Etchells Nationals, expected large fleet to battle for title on offshore course - Zhik Etchells 2012 Australian Championship
Damian Devine

The championship program is four race days straight on the offshore Palm Beach Circle course with two races each day from 11th to 14th February. This makes a total of eight races, three constituting a series and only one drop allowed.

To the delight of many Etchells sailors, there will be no mid-regatta weigh-in. 'The IGC has granted exemption,' Ritchard said.

Ritchard also advised that competitors should be fully aware of the PFD requirements for this event. 'The PFD requirement for the Nationals will be identical to that as prescribed for the Worlds. All competitors while on water must wear a PFD type 1 or AS4758 PFD (minimum level 100) or equivalent overseas standard. The snug jackets which rate 50N are not acceptable'.

Zhik Etchells 2012 Australian Championship
Damian Devine
Following the nationals all boats entered in the World Championship will be moved to Sydney Harbour. 'Some will go by road and for those that choose to sail down, we will probably provide a shepherding service for them,' Ritchard said.

For more information on the Zhik Etchells 2012 Australian Championship, go http://www.rpayc.com.au/championship/int-etchells-class-australian-championship

Details of the pre-Nationals RPAYC hardstand storage arrangement are available from David Ritchard on davidtrim(at)bigpond.com

The Etchells 2012 Australian Championship is sponsored by Zhik, North Sails, Pacesetter Yachts, Protector Yachts and Wetton Signage Group.