If you’re interested in high performance sailing and you have some free time over Easter, head down to Manly Harbour and check out some of the best skiff racing around. The Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron (RQYS) is playing host to up 25 skiffs hoping to take home the Norman Booth trophy for the 12 foot skiff Australian Championship.
Starting from humble beginnings, the 12ft skiff has grown and endured to become one of the last true development classes racing today. With only nine class rules limiting hull size and weight at 45kgs, sailors are free to create and race the boat that they want. The result of this is a 12ft boat that regularly becomes airborne under the power of a spinnaker the same size as most 30 foot yachts.
The Australian Championship has been held since 1925 and is the pinnacle of Aussie twelves’ racing. The current Australian team have just returned from a Interdominion contest with New Zealand held in Auckland early in the new year. The competition will be fierce with the current interdominion champion, Dimension Polyant attempting to make the double. However, there are a number of strong competitors standing in their way.
The best place to watch the spectacular spinnaker rides is on the water, but if you can’t get out there then check out the RQYS viewing platform or Darling Point. Racing commences on the 2nd until the 5th of April.