1 January 2018

New Year’s Day and here we go again! A light south easterly breeze is wafting over the boat park this morning, but it is forecast to swing to the south before race time at midday and freshen to a peak of around 18 knots, which should provide crews with some respite after another tough day on the water yesterday.

Teams are finally realising that at the jersey presentations each evening, there are also spot prizes being awarded – shirts, sunglasses, hats, computer bags, backpacks and so on – all items really useful to young sailors and they were eagerly snapped up by those who attended. As the news spread through the boat park by word of mouth, attendances soared yesterday and will hopefully become the norm.  The fellowship among crews after a hard day on the water was terrific and prizes were a lot of fun.

Great Britain’s Lainey Terkelson had a double reason to celebrate today.  In addition to New Year’s Day, it was also her birthday, and her boat was gaily decorated with balloons for the occasion. Her father Carl pointed out that she’s enjoyed a few good races and also had a few mishaps. “Racing has been a lot of hard work,” he said.

Lainey, who normally sails on a river at home and has little experience of the strong winds and big waves said: “It’s very different here but we’re really enjoying it.  It’s a challenge for us.”

Marcus Steinlein, the German coach, was happy with his boys team, who head the leader board, and the best of his female crews are currently eleventh.  “We enjoy it here but it’s a little hard for them,” he said. “It’s a perfect day for sailing every day in Fremantle. You need to be really experienced in the winds and short waves.”

And so crews head for the water on New Year’s Day, happy in the belief that today’s conditions will be less daunting than yesterday’s.