You're invited to compete in the Australian Championship to be hosted at the Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron from 9 - 14 January 2021 
Online Entry via RSYS
Notice of Race

In this incredible year that we are all living through, we are very much looking forward to closing our 2020 and welcoming 2021 and hosting you at the Australian Championship to be sailed out of Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron on Sydney Harbour. This will be the first time that the Sydney Fleet has hosted the Nationals since 2005.

The IECAA, Sydney Fleet and RSYS have given significant consideration to the appropriateness of hosting this event and specific preparation that will be required given the ongoing impacts of COVID 19 and likelihood of continuing government and other guidelines and requirements for public events such as large regattas.

We are delighted to issue the NOR and do hope that you can join us and wish to share with you some important information about the regatta.

National Championship status - we are conscious of the prospect of border restrictions and to that end will maintain a watch on this to ensure that a genuine National Championship can occur. In the unfortunate even that a "Nationals" cannot occur, it is the Sydney Fleet’s plan to conduct a regatta during the regatta window in any event however refunds will be provided to those that cannot travel or compete.

COVID Plans - for those sailors that do enter, you will be required to comply with all directives of the Organising Authority and these will be published as appropriate closer to the regatta timing.

Race format - to ensure we deliver a great regatta with maximum value, racing will be conducted on Sydney Harbour and and 11 race program is scheduled. We are also looking at providing a variable scheduled start time each day to optimise the weather window.

Corinthian Coaching - as was successfully introduced for the 2020 nationals, a Corinthian teams will be supported by a coach providing daily briefing and reviews.

Fleet forum - the IECAA will host a Fleet Forum to openly discuss Etchells issues and opportunities to further strengthen our class.

Transport and storage - as you all know RSYS has very limited boat and trailer storage. If you plan to arrive before 9 January please contact the RSYS Waterfront Office (details in the NOR). Furthermore, there may be an option at the end of the regatta for interstate visitors to store their boat at RPAYC given that the NSW State Championship is set for February and you should contact Kylie Brown.

Charter boats - for interstate teams, the Sydney Fleet is working on availability of boats for charter. Please contact Mike Tyquin if you are interested.

You can access regatta information, the NOR and enter via RSYS.

We look forward to seeing you in January.

Good sailing. 

Mark Roberts - President, IECAA
Mike Tyquin - Fleet Captain, Sydney 

Boat owners: looking for crew?

We have new sailors on our database keen to sail Etchells.

Get in touch! This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

David Dunn, skipper of Great White Hunter 1483 writes, "It was a brilliant, sunny Sydney spring day that greeted the Sydney Etchells fleet last Saturday for the first race of the Club Championship. A solid N/NE of 14 knots built to 19/20 knots by late afternoon and an in-coming tide made for a classic race day. Our Race Officer Rob Ridley got the fleet away cleanly for the first beat off Clark Island up to the Western Channel mark.

The 'fight' to Bradleys Head, especially with an incoming tide, is a feature of all Etchells races in a NE breeze, and this one was no exception! The determination of the fleet to avoid the tide as well as take advantage of a northerly shift in the breeze ensured some close tacking, as the fleet worked its way up the Western shore. Great White Hunter led the fleet, closely followed by Michael Morris on Northern Havoc 1119, (with current Etchells World Champion Richie Allanson on board) and Peter Gardiner on Vincero 1343. Newcomer Matt Stenta in Great White 1401 is one of the three new Youth / Intermediate crews and he demonstrated some excellent and close yachting. It was also wonderful to have our past Commodore Richard Chapman at the helm of Synergy 1272 as well as current Vice Commodore Christian Brook on Umami, battling it out in tight racing, typical of the Etchells fleet.

Some challenging and exciting runs were had by all, especially as the breeze freshened to 19-20 knots. The fleet charged down from the Western Channel mark to the Darling Point mark under full spinnaker with numerous gybes to maximize tide effect and the pressure lines running down the Western shore. The final work up into Watsons Bay to the finish was keenly fought. There were many 'races within a race' for our competitors, as they jockeyed for final positions. Racing concluded with Great White Hunter taking the honours from Northern Havoc, and Vincero coming third.

The day finished with many weary crews reliving the day's action in the Squadron bar, as is typical of the fleet camaraderie and bonhomie. It was a wonderful day's racing with Sydney Harbour at its best!"

View results here

Photos by John Jeremy

From the fleet Captain:


Thank you to everyone who participated in Thursday night's AGM, we had a great turnout and productive discussions. 

We discussed dates, and apologies for not having circulated the sailing calendar. 

>> download a PDF of the Etchells calendar here

Please the next article for important dates regarding safety inspections, sling inspections and compulsory skippers briefings.

I look forward to seeing you at our first race on 5 September.
Mike Tyquin

Important dates for your diary:

Skippers Briefing via Zoom
RSYS will conduct online briefings at 1800 hours on Thursday 27 August and Tuesday 1 September 2020.

It is compulsory for the skipper or the person in charge of each boat to attend one of the online briefings. Skippers or persons in charge must register prior to the briefing via one of the links below then log on at 1800 hrs on the night.

RSYS Skippers’ Briefing #1 – Thursday 27 August 2020
Registration Link

RSYS Skippers’ Briefing #2 – Tuesday 1 September 2020
Registration Link

Entries will not be accepted for any race or series conducted by RSYS without satisfactory evidence that a skipper or person in charge of that boat has attended the online briefing.  


Equipment Audits
at RSYS Saturday 22 & 29 August: 0900-1330 hrs

Sling Inspection for hardstand boats
Saturday 22 August (only) 0900-1200 hrs. 

Servicing of Inflatable life jackets
Your equipment audit requires that inflatable life jackets are checked annually by an approved servicing agent. If you choose to use Boatie Afloat (Matt Pyne); place your jackets in a bag with a completed service form.  Select this link to download a form. Leave the bag inside Wudyong House (Sailing Office). Contact Matt Pyne 0418 242 637 and let him know your jackets are ready for service. He will pick them up and drop them back when complete. The process takes approximately 7 days.



Notice of Annual General Meeting

Thursday 13 August 8.00pm via video conference

The Agenda, 2019 AGM Minutes, 2019-2020 Fleet Captain's report and the link to the Zoom meeting have been emailed to Fleet Members. 

Please RSVP or forward any questions to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


The One Design Ice Breaker regatta held by RSYS over the weekend 8 - 9 August attracted a fleet of 17 boats. 

After 6 races over the two days, Matt Crawford on Flirtation (EAUS1026) out of the RPAYC dominated. Congratulations. 

Flirtation (EAUS1026)    Matthew Crawford    RPAYC        
Flying High (EAUS1475)    JC Strong    RSYS
Havoc (EAUS1473)    Iain Murray    RSYS        
Umami (EAUS1250)    Matty Whitnall    RSYS 

View full results here

Exciting news:- Due to COVID-19, the 2020/21 Etchells Worlds which were scheduled for November in Perth have been postponed by 12 months. As a result, the National Association has reorganised the season schedule and the Australian Championship will now take place in Sydney from 10-14 January 2021.

This is the first time the Sydney Fleet and RSYS have hosted the Nationals since 2005.

More details to follow.

At our AGM at the start of the season, we announced that steps had been taken to set up a Sydney Etchells Foundation, registered with the Australian Sports Foundation, to enable a Development program to be established.

The objective of the program is to introduce younger sailors (22-35yrs) to Etchells with a view to creating a pipeline of new owners and crews.

A Foundation to support the program (ie to raise funds and own assets) has been established and is a separate entity from the Incorporated Fleet. You can find documentation attached here regarding the operating approach.

Martin Hill and Rupert Henry have very generously donated boats, and David Dunn and Andrew Howe are in the process of donating their boat. Additionally, Nicole Shrimpton has made a generous cash donation to provide seed funding.

We are now in a position to formally get underway in terms of recruiting teams for the 2020/21 season, and to that end we are hosting a session on 20 May to introduce the program to suitable teams and start the recruitment process.

I do want to recognise Paul Thackray for navigating the various establishment requirements of the ASF and also James Mayo for the energy and focus he has brought in recent months, particularly working with our donors.

Most importantly, as we introduce new people to our fleet, it is important that they are welcomed and supported.

If you have any questions please feel free to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Letter from RSYS Commodore David Ward.

17 March 2020

Coronavirus Precautions – Suspended Activities & Closures

Dear Members and friends in Sailing,
Your General Committee and the Squadron’s Senior Management team have been monitoring on a continuous basis the growing implications of Coronavirus (COVID-19) in our wider community and on our Club’s many activities and operations.

We are being guided by relevant Health Authorities, expert health input, senior management recommendations, as well as Member feedback. Our CEO William Pettigrew is in active dialogue with his counterparts at various major clubs and peak bodies, locally, interstate and overseas, as well as the NSW Department of Health.

We continue to assess the risk in relation to all operations, activities and events at the Club, paying particular attention to threats of transmission and the heightened vulnerability of our demographic membership base. As a consequence of this risk assessment, Members are advised that the following actions are effective immediately:

  1. All organised sailing and training activity for the season has been cancelled. See below for details.
  2. The Dining Room and Main Bar will remain open for lunch and dinner with bookings and table sizes limited to ensure appropriate distances.
  3. The Careening Cove Anchorage (CCA) will open for breakfast and lunch only (seven days), at a reduced capacity to a maximum of 100. No tables or groups larger than 6. Members must book prior to arrival, no “walk-ins” will be admitted in any restaurant.
  4. Forthcoming Squadron events are postponed e.g. Wine tastings, Wine Dinner, Book Club, Cruising Division, Literary Lunch, Friday Twilight Presentation Dinner.
  5. All Bridge activity at the Club has been suspended until further notice. This suspension includes all regular weekly sessions, social play, John Roberts lessons and the Stepping Stone House Bridge Day.
  6. The Club will not be hosting large functions before 1 May.
  7. The Club has cancelled all Clubhouse room accommodation bookings up until 1 May.
  8. Conference rooms are available with revised attendance capacities.
  9. Until further notice, the tender service and the repair service will operate as usual.

The NSW Health Infectious Disease Department has reviewed these measures and agreed that they are appropriate, responsible and well-considered given the current state, though acknowledges that circumstances can change rapidly.

Ultimately, our concern is for the health and wellbeing of everyone associated with our Club and this is the basis for these decisions. Other Squadron activities, events and operations will continue to be assessed, and we will keep you informed of further changes as the situation evolves.

The CEO and his senior management team have already taken a number of initiatives across the Club, particularly in terms of heightened hygiene, cleaning and food preparation.

We ask all Members to continue to practise good hygiene to protect against infections and

require that you not attend the club at all if:

  • you or anyone in your immediate family and work colleagues has COVID-19
  • you or anyone in your immediate family and work colleagues has been in contact with a known COVID-19 patient
  • you or anyone in your immediate family and work colleagues is in voluntary isolation, say as a recent overseas returnee
  • anyone has a cold or cold-like symptoms.

We are grateful to all Members, staff and experts for their guidance and co-operation. As COVID-19 continues to impact the lives of people everywhere, we seek your understanding and know that you share our concerns, given these trying times. We are a Club first and foremost - a Club having at our core the care of our Members, your guests, and our staff. 

We will share additional information as soon as it becomes available. Updates will also be posted to the Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron website, with a link to a regularly updated document providing Members with the latest information and updates about Club activities and the General Committee’s thinking and decisions.

We appreciate your patience as we make every effort to continue to assess the situation and communicate effectively and efficiently.


Warm regards,

David Ward


Sailing to be cancelled:

  • Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday Youth Dinghy Sailing activities
  • PONANT Friday Twilight
  • All Saturday racing (Summer Series, Mini A's, Mini B's, Varuna Trophy race)
  • Sunday Twilight
  • Stepping Stone House Regatta
  • RSYS Annual Cruise
  • All RSYS Sailing Academy courses including: 
    • Sunday Tackers 1, 2 & 3
    • Sunday Keelboat Start Crewing, Start Helming, Start Skippering, Spinnakers
    • Wednesday LOTS Keelboat Start Crewing, Start Helming, Start Skippering, Spinnakers.

A decision on the Combined Clubs Winter Series will be advised closer to the time.

Included in our calendar but not run by RSYS:

  • RPEYC Wednesday afternoon racing
  • SOPS racing on March 21 that is being run by MHYC

Skippers should refer to these clubs regarding details.


Congratulations to Graeme Taylor, James Mayo and Jake Lilley of Magpie who won the NSW State Championship held at Lake Macquarie from 20-23 February.

They dominated and secured the win with a race to spare.

Magpie are on a roll: taking the 2019 Milson Silver Goblets and the 2020 Nationals. Next week they will defend their 2019 VIC States title.

Congratulations also to Iain Murray’s Havoc and JC Strong’s Flying High for winning 2nd and 3rd respectively in the fleet of 25.

View full results here  

Wanted - Spinnaker
"Hi, I've just bought an old but strong Etchells and am trying to get it ready for racing on a low budget. If you have a Spinnaker and a boat cover you are not using anymore, I'm willing to buy or accept any kind donations!"

Please contact Clint MacKinlay 0432 953 411

We have more for sale / wanted notices here. 



NSW State Championship
20 - 23 February 
The Lake Macquarie Etchells fleet is looking forward to welcoming you to sail on the tranquil lake. Registration and weigh-in on Thursday 20th, with three days of racing, Friday to Sunday.
Online Entry Open
Notice of Race

VIC State Championship
6 - 9 March 2020.

Sail on the long weekend in Melbourne at Royal Brighton Yacht Club, hosts for the VIC States.

Information here

The final race on Friday 22 November was abandoned when a storm hit Sydney Harbour. Therefore the final results from the previous day stood: Graeme Taylor with Ben Lamb and James Mayo on Magpie came 1st overall; 2nd Havoc with Iain Murray, Colin Beashel and Richie Allanson; with Jeanne-Claude Strong's Flying High in 3rd in a fleet of 17. 

The Corinthian trophy was won by Matt Whitnall's Synergy. 

Congratulations all!

Place Name Skipper Club 1 2 3 4 5 Points
1 Magpie (EAUS1474) Graeme Taylor RSYS 2 1 (2) 1 ABD 4
2 Havoc (EAUS1473) Iain Murray RSYS 1 3 1 (3) ABD 5
3 Flying High (EAUS1475) JC Strong RSYS 3 2 (6) 2 ABD 7
4 Adam Magpie (EAUS1187) P.Merrington S.Jarvin CYCA 4 4 3 (4) ABD 11
5 Lisa Rose (EAUS1449) Martin Hill RSYS 5 6 (11) 5 ABD 16
6 Lisa (EAUS925) Matthew Stenta RSYS 8 (10) 4 6 ABD 18
7 Synergy (EAUS1362) Matty Whitnall RSYS 7 9 5 (11) ABD 21
8 Great White Hunter (EAUS1401) David Dunn RSYS (12) 5 8 8 ABD 21
9 Wobbegong 2 (EAUS1436) Doug Flynn RSYS 6 (12) 9 7 ABD 22
10 Umami (EAUS1250) Christian Brook RSYS 10 7 7 (14) ABD 24
11 Avalon (EAUS1447) Michael Bellingham RSYS 9 (11) 10 9 ABD 28
12 Carabella IV (EAUS1219) Matthew McCann RSYS 11 8 (13) 10 ABD 29
13 Tranquility Base (EAUS1377) Robert Weir, Mike Tyquin & Paul Thackray RSYS 13 13 12 (18) ABD 38
14 Thelastone (EAUS1392) Steve Billingham RSYS (18) 15 14 14 ABD 43
15 Touch Pause Engage (EAUS1186) Michael Stovin-Bradford RSYS 14 14 15 (18) ABD 43
16 Northern Havoc (EAUS1119) Michael Morris RSYS 18 16 17 (18) ABD 51
17 Tonic (EAUS1125) Peter Alexander RSYS 18 18 16 (18) ABD 52

Sailing has been very tight across the challenging first days of the regatta, with less than 5 minutes between first and last in these hour long races and places often decided by the narrowest of margins. “There are no slouches in this fleet,” quipped one skipper.

Day 1 featured a strong nor'easterly and was won by current World Champion Iain Murray and his crew from the Worlds on EAUS1473 Havoc. On day 2, in a fading breeze, the race was won by Graeme Taylor on EAUS1474 Magpie. Looking at the pointscore at the conclusion of day 2 Graeme Taylor has a narrow lead of just one point from Iain Murray with Jeanne-Claude Strong on EAUS1475 Flying High placed third.

Goblets continues every night this week, concluding on Friday.

View the latest results here.

Photo by Kylie Wilson

We currently have good fleet entered including our two past World Champions and a few more entries on the way, so as usual great racing expected. Entries are open until Friday and casual entries will also be accepted for individual races to encourage more boats to join the fleet over the week.
>> NOR, SI & Entries here

A few notes in advance of the week:

Entry, Launching and haul out
To encourage more entries we don’t require Class membership - note this is not a sanctioned event - however Class rules regarding weight limits and sail use are required to be complied with as per the NOR and SIs.

Please do note that boats entering for the series are required to be afloat by 1700hrs on Monday 18 November and are not be hauled out during the regatta and be located at RSYS except with written permission of the RC.

Corinthian trophy - Kopsen Trophy
Last year we introduced a Corinthian category and this year Corinthian teams will be racing for the Kopsen Trophy. The Kopsen family has had a long association with the Etchells Fleet with Bill being one of our most prominent members during the 1980s and 90s.

Please note that eligibility is as per World Sailing Sailor Classification Code and to be eligible, all skippers and crews for all races must meet the criteria as a Group 1 competitor. To nominate as a Corinthian entry, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. We understand that being a mid-week regatta, crew changes can and do happen at short notice, so it is the obligation of the skipper to withdraw their Corinthian entry in the event that any World Sailing Category 3 sailors do sail on a boat during the regatta.

As is the custom, a post-race snack will be provided each day in the CCA bar. On Friday night a short prizegiving will be held post racing with drinks to follow at the Rooftop bar. 

I look forward to seeing you on the water. 

Mike Tyquin


The Sydney Etchells fleet is once again looking forward to hosting one of the marquee events on the annual Australian Etchells racing calendar from 18 to 22 November. On offer will be the historic Milson Silver Goblets.

Hosted by RSYS, the event comprises five twilight races, against the spectacular backdrop of Sydney Harbour. Competitors enjoy exceptional summer sailing conditions and the midweek reduced water traffic. 

The previous regatta was won by David Edwards' Iron Lotus: L to R Greg O'Shea (trim), Rupert Henry (Helm), Dave Edwards (main) Josh Chant.

25 entries are expected with the typical high standard of racing that the Etchells class provides, especially in the Sydney Fleet. The regatta will conclude with a prize giving dinner on Friday evening after racing.

Entries are open and the Notice of Race and Entry Forms are available via the RSYS website here
For more information, please contact the Fleet Captain Mike Tyquin or call 0422 381 151.


The season is off to a good start with mixed conditions and good numbers. We have had a successful development day with about 20 people having their first Etchells experience. Last week’s Club Championship in a fresh westerly was a great day out and pretty interesting.
By now you will have received a Notice of Special General Meeting that has been called to propose changes to sail acquisition process and limits. I encourage you all to review the proposals. 
There are a number of issues that are unclear about this proposal as there was no explanatory note and the voting process is unclear (are proxies allowed?) and I have sought further information.
The proposals themselves, particularly the abolition of sail acquisition limits, are arguably the biggest rule changes that our class has seen in 50 years. The Fleet Committee has considered the proposals and has significant concerns on the basis of increasing cost and complexity - two issues which the Class has managed well and that have made the Class attractive over the years. Having said that, we are open to some reasonable reform to sail acquisition limits.
We are keen to ensure that all views are considered and will hold a short meeting this Saturday 26 October at RSYS on the lower terrace at 1030hrs to discuss. The Fleet Committee will then take the Fleet’s position back to the IGC. I apologise for the short notice; if you cannot make it please do call or email me should you have any questions or comments.

Mike Tyquin
Fleet Captain

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


There is always a sizable fleet  with the Etchells… And this is because since their inception just over 50 years ago there has been a strong conviction by the Corinthians to be a part of the best One Design sailing going around. It is as true today as ever, for there are boat numbers from the 8 and 900s still being campaigned hard, whether as part of their local fleet, or trailered across the land to compete in different waters.

The 2020 Etchells Australian Championship is to be held from January 7 out of the home base for the Melbourne Fleet, the Royal Brighton Yacht Club. As usual, the fleet will showcase some of this country's sailing greats, including current Etchells Australian and World Champions, Iain Murray, Colin Beashel and Richie Allanson. Olympic Gold Medallist, America's Cup sailor, and recently crowned SailGP winner, Tom Slingsby will also be there, as too the ever youthful, multiple Australian and World Champion, John Bertrand AO. 

“However, while the best of the best continue to return to the Etchells for what is so highly regarded as being the best fleet racing in Australia, at the heart of this truly one design class is the Corinthian. For it is in this one simple word that the spirit of the Etchells Class is perhaps best represented, encapsulating notions of camaraderie and mateship in pursuance of the highest standards of amateur sportsmanship”, said International Etchells Class of Australia President, Mark Roberts.

“And I will tell you what, there are not too many classes where you are able to enjoy the benefits of being truly Corinthian while at the same time mixing it up against the professionals in the same patch of water. And there is nothing better than beating them!”

“In recognition of the importance of the Corinthian division, and growing their presence within the Etchells class, the Australian Association has determined to implement a few changes. Notably and importantly, the Corinthian fleet is going to be offered to join in with additional coaching, and the trophy itself will be given even more importance as part of the whole equation, before, during, and especially after the racing is done.”

“Maintaining the focus on the Corinthian element is of critical importance in our current and future plans for the Etchells class. This echoes the attitude not only here in Australia, but also internationally. We are currently enjoying tremendous growth on the back of the Brisbane World Championship. With the Perth Worlds in November 2020, and the Worlds also returning to Melbourne in 2023, the growth of the class is only expected to increase significantly. At a grass roots level this by virtue of the interest and drive of the amateurs within our fleets."

So what is about being a Corinthian?

Arguably the best place to start is with the new Melbourne Fleet Captain, James Bacon, who in a lot ways epitomises the newer type of Etchells sailor – in love with it, competing hard and as often as they can, and also rising up to the challenge of taking on an office inside the Fleets and Executive.

Bacon commented, “We’re definitely pretty excited about it. There is a good energy around the place, especially now that we have secured the 2023 World Championship. We are aiming for 40 boats at the Australian Championship next January, and it would be great to crack 50 boats. We are really wanting to see some of the fleets closer to Melbourne, like Geelong and Metung, get totally behind this title, and we could well do 50 boats if that occurs.”

“We know there are boats form Adelaide, Sydney, and Brisbane too that are keen, and we will make anyone from Perth very welcome. Just make contact with us”, added Bacon.

Buying into the fleet in 2011, Bacon upgraded to his newer boat, Vendetta, in 2016, and with a young family, including children aged three and five, he juggles all of that and a new company he started. He’s also quick to point out that his wife makes it all possible. “We’ll be sailing each week from now on.” 

Having also taken on the role of Fleet Captain, he is keen to see participation continue to rise. Looking to his own pathway, Bacon commented, “There is a large proportion of Etchells that are affordable. You can find a competitive vessel for $20k-30, and be in the mix when you attend regattas. It is a great point from which to build a team. You do have to be in it for a few years to get the rewards, but they are significant and well worth the effort. This is exactly why I have stuck with it myself, for there are always new goals on offer.”

“You know where you are straight away in Etchells, and get your rewards on the track virtually instantaneously. You can get started with an older boat, sail more often as you require lower crew numbers, and then when you have more time and budget, you can opt for new sails and so forth and get even more competitive. I love the class because you are switched on the whole time, which is different to sitting on the rail as part of a large crew on a big boat.”

“I was 30 years of age when I first bought in, so it is possible, and mates can always chip in together to get racing sooner. Owning is a pleasure, you do make your own decisions, which is really a big thing in the scheme of it, and this is genuinely something attainable in your 30s and 40s.”

“It really is all about the close racing and good friendships. We have approachable people inside the fleet and we have crews like Damien King’s, Barry, Kirwan Robb’s, Triad, and Ian ‘Biggles’ Johnson driving John Collingwood’s, Dawn Raid. There is plenty of quality sailing to be had…”, said Bacon in closing.

Jason Hawkins from the Brisbane Fleet is a bit like James Bacon. Younger than some, and also recently elevated to Fleet Captain, Hawkins said, “I am intending on attending. We’ll take our boat, Knot Easy (AUS876) down to Melbourne. It is David Clark’s old boat (current Vice President IECCA). Sailing Etchells is a bit like golf. You have one or two shots in a round that are just glorious, and it is enough to keep you coming back! It is a brutal game, but when it all works there is nothing better.”

“At the 2018 World Championship we were right in there at a mark rounding, and had to gybe back to find a hole, and went from 15th to 70th - that’s Etchells.”
“I was crewing on bigger boats for five or six years, doing offshore race including a Hobart, as well as club racing on a Sydney 38. I just did not like not really knowing how good you were as a yachtsman. On my way to sailing I would drive past the Etchells and I always wanted to do it. The opportunity came to buy, so we went in boots and all…”

“Looking for the brutal honest truth was tough, and the learning curve was steep - two to three seasons, as the competition is strong all the way through the fleet. Equally, the camaraderie of the fleet is really strong, with loads of encouragement always on offer. It is brilliant to race against the likes of Matt Chew, and we crossed in front of them once, to which they said over the water, ‘That’ll never happen again’.  The competitiveness and humour go hand in hand.”

“It is our sixth season coming up now. Jim Snow was the other purchaser and we have Chris Nezmah on board too. He had never sailed before Etchelling, and we gave him the pointy end. He’s now Treasurer of the fleet.”

“I was heavily involved in the Worlds, saw how it was run, and saw the input of Noel Paterson and David Healey amongst others. Now was a good time to inject new life and eyes, as well as a fresh approach too, so I put the hand up, and walked into the challenge.”

Hawkins concluded by saying, “Etchells is always seen as the competitors class, and this too is what brings the pros along, as it is the benchmark class that others would like to get to. However, for me it is about grass roots, and this is why we encourage it and look to the community aspects, just has much as the competition. My M.O is to get people turning up regularly, especially from our female and youth sector.”

Peter Stubbings from, Men’s Shirts (AUS1141) has been around a little longer (some 20 years now), and simply says, “They are great boat, look fabulous, and in the right wind, right waves, with the right trim, they are spectacular.”

Quite jovial, Stubbings added almost immediately, “I’m glad we don’t do Olympic courses anymore. I started in the mid-90s with a second-hand boat some mates and I bought. In 1999 we updated to a new Pacesetter, which has been great. She’s lovingly cared for, and pretty competitive. We have been fortunate to have a permanent roster of crew to sail three-up, consisting of my sister Ann, Ross Melville, and Dick Stephens. We are all good friends, and I think we sail her well, with as few dramas as we can hope for, and are harmonious and quiet.”

As for the racing, Stubbings says, “There is an amazing depth of talent and skill in the fleet. Mugs like me can mix it up, and still be competitive with the superstars. At the big regattas the best of the best may be in front, but not necessarily all the time, and it could well be just a few metres in it. Being in amongst the best in the world is definitely part of the attraction.”

“It is emotional, and then there is the physical art of sailing the boat, so it is a good workout for both the left and right side of the brain. Most of the really good crews share their knowledge, so that the bar rises for everyone, and they are keen to see everyone go faster. You might have to ask, but they will tell.”

“We do like to travel, but Perth has been a bit challenging due to our jobs. A good road trailer, and all the lifting gear have made it so much easier than borrowing or hiring. As a result, a lot of the Eastern seaboard regattas become pretty easy, and can be done inside 24 hours notice”, said Stubbings in closing.

Kirwan Robb commented, “We’re excited about getting back into the Etchells. We’re older and wiser, but still one of the young ones in this fleet. We all have young families now, so it’s always fun trying to juggle that with sailing. We’re still campaigning Ikon, the family Beneteau 45, as well, and recently returned from Hamilton Island where we won our IRC division.” 

“We bought Triad in January a week before the Nationals, and surprised ourselves with how well we went, placing a very credible fourth. It’s very nice to know that you have a boat that is fast. As long as we get the tactics right, we can do well. We love the challenge of this class. Etchells is the best one-design class in Australia and the calibre of sailor it attracts is incomparable, with competitors including Glenn Ashby, Tom Slingsby and John Bertrand.”

“Although we had Darren ‘Twirler’ Jones for the last Nationals, we’re planning to go back to our Corinthian ways and compete with our mates, Rodney Muller and Brett Taylor, and possibly also persuade Hugo Allison, recent Australian Champion in the Cadet, to sail with us again. First up is the Nationals at Brighton, then next year the Worlds in Fremantle. We can’t wait to get out there.”

Of course the competition will be hot as always, whether you’re talking between first and second, or 31st and 32nd. Alas, to make all of that happen you have to book in, and the NOR as well as entry can be found here - - so that means you need to start clicking away now, charter a boat if necessary, or ensure the brakes have been inspected on the road trailer, and get set to play in the clam and flat, or tempestuous and mogul laden waters of Port Phillip. If you’re lucky, you may even get to have it all in just the one day. WooHooooo!

Photo of racing on Port Phillip by

Sails - moderate use

1 x Etchells Norths Main $300
1 x Etchells Norths Jib FLR $250
1 x Etchells Norths Jib DC $200

Contact Marc Wait, 0400 046 372, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

More at

Have you ever wanted to sail the world's best one design keelboat? Well here’s your chance!

The Sydney fleet is holding a development day on Saturday 21 September at RSYS. They have 6 boats available in the morning and will orientate you around the features of the boat and take you out on the water. You will then have an opportunity to join in Club racing in the afternoon and enjoy some real on-water action. 

1030hrs coffee, meeting and briefing
1100-1200hrs Test sail experience
1200-1600hrs Race experience
After racing join us for free drinks and snacks at the Club. 

If study, family and life have taken you away from sailing recently, this is an ideal opportunity to be involved again, either on a casual or regular basis. What are you waiting for?
Register your interest at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The Southport Yacht Club in conjunction with the Gold Coast Fleet will host the 2019 QLD Championship at the Southport Yacht Club Hollywell Squadron and Main Beach from Friday 8th to Sunday 10th of November 2019.

The predictable weather and superb sailing conditions will be a big drawcard and a large, competitive fleet is anticipated. 

>> NOR, SI and entries here

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Friday 8th November
Registration @ SYC Main Beach 0800-1600hrs

Saturday 9th November             
Registration @ SYC Main Beach 0830-930hrs                                                    
Skippers Briefing @ SYC Main Beach 0930hrs
Race 1 Warning 1155hrs
Race 2 ASAP after Race 1
Race 3 ASAP after Race 2

Sunday 10th November
Skippers Briefing @ SYC Main Beach 0800hrs
Race 4 Warning 1055hrs
Race 5 ASAP after Race 4
Race 6 ASAP after Race 5

Presentation of Prizes at SYC Hollywell 1700hrs approx.

Last year I wrote that the fleet, as with the national fleet, has become more oriented around regatta format sailing, and 2018/19 saw a continuation of this trend.

The positive side of this has been the great attendance by, and success of, Sydney Fleet crews at major regattas.

The success of Martin Hill, Julian Plante, Matt Belcher and Sean O’Rourke in a 90+ boat fleet in Brisbane was a wonderful achievement by Martin and his team. To then have Iain Murray win his second World Championship (25 years after his first) with Colin Beashel (his 3rd) and Richie Allanson in Texas in June in a smaller but talent-laden fleet was equally meritorious.

In addition to these results it should be noted that Sydney Fleet boats currently hold the Australian Championship (Iain, Colin and Richie), NSW Championship (Colin, Richie and Henry Kernot), the Queensland Championship / 2018 Pre-Worlds (Tom King, David Edwards, Ivan Wheen and Greg O’Shea). In addition James Mayo and Richie won the Victorian States with Graeme Taylor.

My sense is that this level of success is unprecedented. Congratulations. The preparation of the top Sydney crews has clearly been a huge part of the success but also has contributed much to the class in the last few years. In particular, Richie Allanson should be recognised for assisting many people in our fleet and reinvigorating the sale of new Australian built Etchells.

Beyond the winners, our fleet has been the most travelled fleet of all in Australia and proven that across our fleet, both home and away, there is great competition to be had.

The travel of our fleet and particularly the timing of the Brisbane Worlds - most of our 16 boats were based in Brisbane leading up to the regatta and understandably had a break after - meant that the start of last season was a bit slow in terms of numbers, however this recovered after Christmas and peaked for the Eaton Cup Mini Regatta on the last day of the season with John Bertrand visiting and besting a 24 boat fleet.

Across our Club racing, Christian Brook took the Club Championship and Mini Regatta pointscores.

Our fleet member numbers were down on the year prior which had benefitted from members being attracted by our hosting of the NSW State Championships.

The Milsons Silver Goblets attracted a usual high quality fleet in good numbers with Rupert Henry stepping in for Tom King on board Iron Lotus with David Edwards, Ivan Wheen and Greg O’Shea for the win.

Over the winter we tested a training weekend format with thanks to JC Strong, GT and James Mayo’s support that was well attended by 11 boats. We have taken some very high quality drone footage that will be converted into a training video for use by the fleet. The format used will be the basis of the training days scheduled for the upcoming season.

Following last year’s AGM, we did address the cost of Etchells sailing with RSYS. At this stage RSYS is not inclined to directly reduce costs however is open to other in kind opportunities which are yet to be assessed by the fleet.


Fleet development and 2019/20 program

Looking at race day numbers in last few seasons and working with RSYS, the Committee has made some changes to the 2019/20 season with the intention to simplify the calendar and drive participation.

The guiding principles have been to:

  • Create a clear calendar of key events
  • Simplify the pointscore model
  • Avoid clashes where possible with other major events (eg CYCA BWS)
  • Manage RSYS calendar events particularly after Christmas that has limited scheduling
  • Have specific dates for training and fleet development baked into the calendar


The key changes are;

  • There are two separate pointscores for the season
    • Club Championship comprising single race days
    • Mini regattas comprising 3 race days
  • Milsons Silver Goblets will be November, Monday to Friday
  • World Championship qualifiers – to be held across February and March 2020
  • Creation of stand alone non-pointscore days that will be used as training / development days – there will still be a 1245 start line but will be a non PS race
  • Creation of specific Corinthian categories for pointscores


Development program

The Committee now has engagement with the RSYS Youth Committee and we hope to be able to more effectively link crews to owners.

Following last year’s call for owners’ interest in supporting the establishment of a development path, we have two owners who have generously indicated that they have boats available for use.

The Committee has also considered acquiring up to two additional boats to provide a total of four boats that would on clear terms be available for use on a full season commitment basis to crews (approx. 20-26 years). One of the key dependencies is

that we would require RSYS to forego hardstand fees and subject to agreement at the AGM, a formal proposal will be finalised to table with RSYS.


Future Regattas

With Perth hosting the 2020 Worlds and Melbourne hosting the 2023 Worlds, it is important that our own fleet has a clear regatta plan. We seem likely to host the NSW state championship in 2022 and based on the State based rotation for the Australian Championship, the 2022 /23 Nationals.

Good sailing and I look forward to seeing you for our new season in a few weeks.


Mike Tyquin

August 2019

Notice of Annual General Meeting, 6pm Thursday 1 August at RSYS.

1. Apologies
2. Minutes of 2018 Meeting
3. President's report
4. Financial report
5. Youth team proposal
6. 2019/20 season programme overview
7. National and International Assoc matters
8. General Business

Cook-your-own-BBQ options
Chicken & Thyme Sausage  250gm   $24
Qld Swordfish Fillet  180gm   $30
Darling Downs Qld Wagyu M 4 Sirloin  250gm   $37
Grainge Eye Fillet  180gm   $35
Pinnacle Rib Eye Cutlet  400gm    $38
All BBQ items are served with jacket potato ready to re-heat on the BBQ, salad and a freshly baked bread roll.
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As part of your 2019/20 equipment audits, the club requires that the lifting slings for RSYS hardstand boats must be inspected and tagged at least annually, by an approved sling servicing agent.

On Saturday 24 August (only) 9am to 12pm, the Sailing Office has organised a representative from ‘All Lifting’ to be onsite to inspect and tag slings as proof of inspection. This service is free of charge.

If you or a representative from your boat, are unable to attend the equipment audit on this day, you have a few options:

- Organise someone else on 24 August to have your slings inspected and tagged on your behalf
- Take your slings to an approved sling inspector and have them inspect and tag your slings. 'Sydney Lifting Equipment' in Brookvale is able to inspect slings. Please note SLE will charge you for this.
- For new slings, auditors will accept a purchase receipt not more than 8 weeks prior to the date of your audit in lieu of a sling inspection. You must present this receipt at the time of the audit.

Book an equipment audit with Rob Ridley at  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Congratulations Martin Hill on winning the Australian NSW/ACT Male Sailor of the Year.

In handing out the award, Vice-Commodore of the Middle Harbour Yacht Club Alister Copley highlighted that in October 2018 Hill won the Etchells World Championship in Brisbane ahead of a 90 plus boat field that included seven past Etchells world champions, numerous champions from other classes and several Olympians.

View the full list of award winners here

More photos from the presentation night here

Iain Murray, Richie Allanson and Colin Beashel have won the 2019 Etchells World Championships in Corpus Christi, Texas, USA.  The Havoc team were clinical in their sailing all through the event and led the regatta from the end of day one and continued to lead the regatta everyday thereafter to comfortably win the event by two points from their fellow Australians on Magpie: James Mayo, Graeme Taylor and Tom Slingsby.

It was a fantastic regatta for all the competing Sydney Fleet teams who finished in the top half of the 37 strong fleet, drawn from across the globe and featuring previous Etchells world champions, Olympic gold medalists and America's cup sailors. The excellent performances by all of the RSYS Etchells teams at the World Championships highlights the enormous depth of talent amongst our fleet, producing back to back Etchells Worlds champions for two years in a row following on from Martin Hill's win at the 2018 Etchells Worlds in Brisbane. Martin and his crew finished a very respectable 8th in the 2019 event.

Congratulations on great results.

View full results here

Etchells 2019 Australasian Championship
Mooloolaba Yacht Club

Congratulations Top 40: Peter Merrington, Geoff Bonouvrie and Ian McKillop for their 2nd place!

A fantastic performance from Jeanne-Claude Strong, Marcus Burke, Kate Devereaux and Seve Jarvin on AUS1435, coming 8th in the high calibre international fleet of 30.

Well done also to Whenanif, Vincero, AUS1463, Great White Hunter, Thelastone, Northern Havoc.

>> view full results here

Photo Adventures of a Sailor Girl - Nic Douglass

Congratulations Martin on being named RSYS Yachtsman of the Year at Friday night's prize giving event.

The Idris Cup is awarded to a Squadron Member who has achieved outstanding results at local, national or international sailing events. The recipient must also demonstrate the art of good seamanship and a sportsmanlike conduct.

Martin joined the Sydney Etchells Fleet four years ago, before which he had been a world class campaigner in the Farr 40 class. In November he won the Etchells World Championship in Brisbane ahead of a 90 plus boat field that included seven past Etchells world champions, numerous champions from other classes and several Olympians. He commissioned a new boat, assembled an outstanding team and after strong regatta performances leading in to the event, sailed with unmatched consistency. 

Presenting the trophy, RSYS Captain Karyn Gojnich said, 'The Etchells Class remains the pinnacle for one design keelboat sailing in Australia and a leading class on the global stage. Martin's win underlines the strength of his planning, determination and skills to achieve the highest accolade. In addition he demonstrates great humility and generosity as participant in the Class.'


Photo by Darcie Collington Photography

Nev Wittey is co-ordinating a training weekend for JC Strong and Graeme Taylor's crews ahead of the Mid Winter Championship in Mooloolaba and has kindly extended an invitation for Sydney Fleet crews to participate.

It is proposed that sessions will be held on the mornings of

Friday 24, Saturday 25 and Sunday 26 May 

commencing on water at 1030hrs and finishing early afternoon. Short pre sail briefing and post sailing de-briefs will be held.

To assist with planning (RIBs, coaches, possibly a drone etc) please confirm your interest so that the sessions can be well planned and participants can get the most out of the training. 

If you can’t sail but are interested in helping (E.g. RIB driving) please do let us know. 

Please contact Mike Tyquin This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  0422 381 151 or Nev Wittey This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 0412 483 344 to register your interest. 


We regret that the dinner on Friday 29 March has been cancelled as bookings were very low and unlikely to meet the minimum required by RSYS to proceed. We will effect refunds to those that had booked. 

We are however planning an alternative, more casual gathering at the Club after our final sail on Saturday 6 April. Details to follow. 

The Fleet Committee













Rupert Henry has steered Iron Lotus to a convincing win at the 2019 Milson Silver Goblets. Onboard were Dave Edwards (owner, main) Greg O'Shea (trim) Josh Chant 5th on Friday.)

1    Iron Lotus (EAUS1442)    Rupert Henry        9
2    Yandoo XX (EAUS868)    Neville Wittey    11
3    Top 40 (EAUS1332)         Peter Merrington & Geoff Bonouvrie    14
4    Flirtation (EAUS1026)      Matthew Crawford        15
=    Synergy (EAUS1272)      David Chapman        15
=    Havoc (EAUS1461)         Iain Murray        15

>> full results here

Iron Lotus joins an illustrious honour roll >> view all the winners since 1971


The annual Milson Silver Goblets regatta has got off to a fantastic start - 22 boats are contesting the five daily twilight races hosted by RSYS on magnificent Sydney Harbour. 

The leaderboard after three races:

1    Iron Lotus (EAUS1442)    David Edwards    
2    Ciao (EAUS1244)              Douglas Mcgain    
3    Flirtation (EAUS1026)       Matthew Crawford    
4    Vincero (EAUS1343)         Nick Kingsmill    
5    2107 Racing (EAUS1213)  Jason Antill    
=    Top 40 (EAUS1332)           Peter Merrington & Geoff Bonouvrie 



Race Officer Ian Kingsford Smith has this update:

Racing in the first heat on Monday was frustrating for the 19 competitors and the race management team. The forecast southerly winds never eventuated and the wind at the scheduled start time was north easterly. However as soon as the race committee set up the course for a NE wind, it began to veer to the right. After a general recall and a minor tweak of the course, the race committee attempted another start but it soon became quite obvious that the breeze was continuing to go right.

The start was postponed and the course was relocated. The race committee eventually got the fleet away on Course 2 in an easterly breeze with a starting line just to the east of Garden Island and the windward marks at a bearing of 095 degrees and a leg length of 0.8 nm. Although the wind continued to go right and finally ended up as a south easterly, the race committee was in no position to swing the course any further south due to the presence of Point Piper. Race 1 was won by Flirtation sailed by Matthew Crawford, Neville Wittey came 2nd and Michael Bellingham 3rd. Everyone concurred that it was an extremely difficult evening for all.

The starting areas for Tuesday’s Race 2 and Wednesday’s Race 3 were off Clarke Island and both races were sailed in a 20 knot NNE wind with course legs of 1.4nm and a compass bearing of 025 degrees for Race 2 and course legs of 1.3nm and a compass bearing of 035 degrees for Race 3. The courses provided excellent racing with 20 boats starting Race 2 and a full complement of 22 in Race 3. Each race took just on 60 minutes and everyone agreed that the sailing conditions were most enjoyable. Race 2 was won by Ciao sailed by Doug McGain, with David Edwards finishing 2nd and Peter Merrington 3rd. Race 3 was won by 2107 Racing sailed by Jason Antill, Nick Kingsmill was 2nd and David Edwards 3rd.

Races 4 and 5 are scheduled for Thursday and Friday.

>> view results so far here

Top photo by Kylie Wilson
Further photos by Declan Brennan. 

Congratulations to Iain Murray, Richie Allanson and Colin Beashel who are this year's national champions. The regatta was hosted by the Brisbane Etchells Fleet and Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron from 13-18 January and the fleet comprised 27 boats. 

Allanson said afterwards, 'I am a buzzing a little right now as it all sinks in. This (result) was much needed after our Worlds campaign, where we had the potential to do well, but fell short, which is a tough thing to go through. So to bring it together this week was a big thing for the programme.

'The competition is hot in Etchells, and the bar has been raised, so you have to get cracking and think. There is lots of talent sailing around, and the class is in a good position', he added.


Also on the podium in third place was the crew of Lisa Rose, comprising Squadron Members Martin Hill and Julian Plante, crew team mates Mat Belcher and Sean O’Rourke. Jeanne-Claude Strong came 18th with her crew of Seve Jarvin, Marcus Burke and Kate Devereux.

Hill, the reigning World Champion, commented, 'We won the first race, which was great. From then on we were pretty consistent, and in the top ten mainly. No UFDs either, which certainly hampered a lot of crews here this week. We came into this regatta knowing about a couple of weaknesses, downwind especially; so learning to sail through the fleet was another positive from it all. We had to earn it all, especially when coming back from being quite deep, so we are pretty happy.'

1st Havoc AUS 1461 Iain Murray, Colin Beashel, Richard Allanson RSYS    
2nd Gen XY AUS 864 Matthew Chew, Brian Donovan, Ben Vercoe, Mitchell Kennedy RQYS             
3rd Lisa Rose AUS 1449 Martin Hill, Julian Plante, Mat Belcher, Sean O'Rourke RSYS

View full results here 

Read the full press release here
article and photos by John Curnow

Entries are now open for this premier Etchells regatta hosted by the Sydney Fleet and RSYS.

The week-long twilight series will run from Monday 28 January to Friday 1 February.   

NOR and online entries click here
SI will be published on 16 January.

Queries? This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Need crew? Looking for a boat? click here

How good was last time?! view photos here and videos here.


Although I felt disappointed with our overall result, it was a great regatta.

The organisation by RQYS was outstanding, from the measuring process through to communication and general conduct of the regatta.

The competition was fierce and the standard throughout the fleet high. It was noticeable how many renowned sailors found it very difficult to recover from poor positions. The long start lines and currents created opportunities and mysteries. I’m sure most are still trying to work it out!

Often one would feel well positioned with 500m to go to the top mark, only to have a shift to left or right and bring in 30 boats. The top mark roundings were generally ok, the bottom mark roundings were interesting to say the least when in a mid-fleet position.

The Race Officials did a pretty good job in difficult conditions throughout.

The Pre Worlds were held in ‘breezy’ conditions and the Worlds in ‘light’ conditions. This created challenges for many. The Pre Worlds at least resulted in that Grant Crowle Chinese gybe shot!

The use of trackers and drones really helped bring the event to life and is setting the standard for future regattas.

Michael Stovin-Bradford


Images by SurfSailKite and Adventures of a Sailor Girl

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