Sam Gilmour claims Australian Youth Match Racing Championship title

  • Youth
  • GALLERY
  • By Jennifer Crooks
  • 29 Sep 2013 15:30:00
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Sam Gilmour and his crew of Adam Negri, Cameron Seagreen and Mark Spearman, representing the University of Western Australia, have won the Australian Youth Match Racing Championship after four days of tense competition.

After finishing the round robin stages on top of the leader board, Gilmour elected to sail against Malcolm Parker (RPAYC) in the semi-finals and defeated him 2-0 to progress to the grand final. “We were pretty dominant in the semis,” Gilmour said

Gilmour didn’t have it all his way in the grand final dropping one match to CYCA’s Harry Price.

“The finals were pretty close – Harry kept pushing us in every match so we weren’t able to get into a comfortable lead. Conditions were light and the shifts were difficult to pick,” Gilmour said.

“I’m happy with our performance – we called the shifts well and had the lead around the marks most of the time. The crew have been awesome – it’s been our first time really sailing together and I’ve seen improvement in them throughout the course of the regatta.”

Sam is the son of Peter Gilmour, a veteran of five America’s Cups and holder of four world match racing titles. A little bit of fatherly advice helped Sam keep a cool head on the final day of competition. “I had a chat to Dad last night and he gave me a bit of advice which really helped and put me in a good mental state. He said ‘Try to stay calm and keep a cool head with your team. There’s bound to be mistakes made but you just have to work through them.’”

Sam was also part of his brother’s (David) crew when they won the title in 2011 at their home club, Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club. This evening, Gilmour was boarding a plane to the Gold Coast to compete in the University Games in the teams racing event with two of his crew (Adam Negri and Mark Spearman).

Harry Price and his crew of Angus Williams, Sam Ellis and Louie Collins, representing the host club, the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia, finished in second place.

“We were very fast downwind but lost a bit of speed upwind. All the final matches against Sam (Gilmour) were tight – whoever got the better start and was able to pick the shifts, got to the top mark first and then had the advantage downwind,” Price said

“It was good to take a match off him and I’m happy we made it into the grand final,” Price added.

Murray Jones and his crew of Jaidan Stevens, Cameron Gundy, Matt Stenta, also representing the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia, finished third beating Malcolm Parker (RPAYC) 2-0 in the petit final, after Jones lost his semi-final to Price 0-2.

Jones knew what cost him matches “We were still making silly errors and mistakes which our opponents capitalised on.”

Principal Race Officer Denis Thompson started the first flight this morning in a light westerly breeze. The easterly came in shortly as the boats for a quarter of the way up the first leg forcing the abandonment of the flight and then re-starting once the easterly breeze had settled.

“A few course changes were required as the breeze shifted but we just rolled through the flights. There was some good racing – the standard of competition in the Australian championships over the last week has been high,” Thompson said.  

The Australian Youth Match Racing Championship were hosted by the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia and sailed on the Youth Sailing Academy’s fleet of Elliott 7s.

Final Results

1st Sam Gilmour (University of Western Australia)

2nd Harry Price (Cruising Yacht Club of Australia)

3rd Murray Jones (Cruising Yacht Club of Australia)

4th Malcolm Parker (Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club)

5th Milly Bennett (Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club)

By Jennifer Crooks, CYCA Media

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