Happy half century

Last weekend saw the Laser ILCA Dinghy 50th Anniversary go ahead without a hitch across the waters of Sydney Harbour.

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Over 100 sailors braved the Sydney winter morning on Sunday 20 June to participate in the Laser ILCA Dinghy 50th Anniversary, celebrating the half-century of the boat class’ presence in Australia.

Initially scheduled for the end of last month, Double Bay Sailing Club, the celebration organisers, decided to postpone the event due to marine weather warnings and COVID-19 restrictions.

Included in the regatta were champions and Olympic rising stars, including 13-time World Masters Champion Brett Beyer, who led the fleet down from the Sydney Opera House to Watsons Bay on board a distinctively gold boat produced by Performance Sailcraft Australia.

But despite the 50th Anniversary not being a race, for many the regatta signalled a de facto competition. “How do you know if it’s a race?” one sailor quipped.

“Well, if there were two Lasers, it’s always a race!”

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Andrew Cox, Commodore of Double Bay Sailing Club, said, “With a huge fleet sailing under dramatic skies, in great wind and waves, set against the iconic Sydney backdrop, the event was a truly memorable experience, which showcased the spirit and camaraderie of the class.”

“We had 217 registered sailors from Sydney and other parts of Australia, but many were unable to attend due to last-minute travel restrictions in place for COVID-19. We’re sorry they couldn’t join us.

“We were delighted with the interest this received, as our key objective was to raise awareness of the popularity, the competitiveness, and the fun of the ILCA Laser class, in the hope of inspiring new and returning sailors to the sport”, Cox concluded.

 

dbsc.com.au

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