Tight racing at Big River Sailing Club Championship

The first of the BRSC Championship heats were held last Saturday in conditions that suited the strong Laser fleet in attendance.

The blustery north winds of the morning gave way to a more consistent sea breeze by race time, which by the end of the second heat had built to a solid 15 knots. The combination of a strengthening north east wind and a run out tide made for short but demanding upwind works, testing downwinds and exhilarating reaches.  

Despite starting the season with a suite of upgrades, perennial club champion Mark Mulligan was this week unable to hold off Joe O’Keefe, who returns to the Laser ranks after a long hiatus. Known in recent times for his achievements on keel boats, Joe was an accomplished Laser youth sailor and his reemergence will no doubt keep his Laser rivals honest.

Nathan Stanton, sailing his Weta trimaran, was the sole multihull and this week had well known yacht sailor Andrew Passmore on board as crew. Andrew was grateful for the full experience, which also included some capsize and recovery practice. The junior fleet was likewise down on numbers, however up and coming windsurfer Jack Hayes comfortably completed both races and looks set to give his father Neil something to chase in the years ahead.

Next week the Club will host the second round of its Handicap series. Race briefing at 1pm with a scheduled start at 1.30pm.


Race 1: Div 1 – N Stanton; Div 2 – W Culph, J O’Keefe, M Mulligan; Div 3 – J Hayes.

Race 2: Div 1 – N Stanton; Div 2 – W Culph, J O’Keefe, N Hayes; Div 3 – E Robertson, J Hayes.

Wayne Culph

Tight racing in the Laser fleet. Image: Contributed by Brian Wright.