First blood as Brewin just leads in the Aussie Nats on Day 1

With the first days races under the belt, Brewin just leads Bundy, as Bob Griffits reports.

After the conclusion of the three faces sailed today on Port Phillip Bay, Stevie Brewin narrowly leads the event with 5 points with a 2-1-2 scorecard.
Just behind on 6 points is  his training and development partner, Darren Bundock, with scores of 1-2-3.  Brad Collett is in third place with places 4-5-1 ( 10 points).  Rounding out the top 6 are Adam Beattie 3-4-4 (11), and Stephen Brayshaw 5-3-5 (13 points).

Racing commenced once again under cool overcast skies, with a bit of drizzle, and winds between 15 to 18 knots, with the occasional stronger gusts.
A number the older sailors elected to sit out the series, and live to fight another day. The foilers are a physically more demanding boat to sail well, and capsizing is an energy sapping process.

There were quite a few swims to be had by competitors, although those at the top of the fleet managed the day without drama. The foiling skills of the mid fleet have improved considerably over the past 12 months,and the fleet racing is more close. After Stevie Brewin's overwhelming dominance in the two practice races yesterday, we might have thought that he would again clear out today, but the first place honours were shared across the three races by Brewin, Bundock , and Collett.

It is early days at this stage, with a further nine races scheduled across the next 4 days.
Winds are forecast to be lighter tomorrow , and will remain in the moderate wind strength spectrum for the remainder of the regatta. The temperatures are forecast to steadily increase from today's 18 degrees C, up to 30 degrees C on Friday. The sun is also scheduled to re-emerge from behind the cloud banks by Wednesday which would be nice.  

Full results here

A few more items to add to the report:
The latest version of the Exploder AD3 has the leading edge of the centreboards 400 mm behind the main beams. With the modern hydrofoil sections, the centreboard cases have come a long way forward from about 900mm aft from the non foiling boards.

The previous orthodoxy was that moving the centreboards forwards should make the boats harder to tack. This is not proving to the be the result, and sailors across the fleet report that the latest boats tack very quickly.  I think that what we are seeing is foil assisted tacking, with the geometry of a catamaran meaning that the leeward centreboard which moves through a greater radius of arc,  speeds up and creates relatively more lift during the turn in relation to the windward foil during the turn.

The other interesting observation is Landy's shorter mast. He is currently sitting in 6th place overall. It is still too early to make accurate observations here. Landy's commitment to the Australian Olympic Team last year meant that he has hardly sailed at all. Secondly his rudder foils are a previous generation of rudder elevators which have less lift. Time will tell.

Photos to follow!