June 2018

Last Month 

 Quicksilver Port Douglas Race Week.

The first serious regatta for the season, Port Douglas Yacht Club turned on a good range of winds (all from the south-east though) and not too sunny skies. In division one we were represented by “Yes”, “Impulse” and “Volare 1”. “Centinela” battled it out in division 2 and division 4, the sports boats & one design were represented by “Kaizen 2” (J24), “Grannnuaile” (the pink J24), “Out of the Blue” and “X2”. (Yes, I know, X2 is from CCYS but, as they are the only boat from up the creek that races, well… they are one of us).

Getting there was pretty exciting with a strong sou-easterly speeding everyone to “Port” on Sunday or Monday. “Out of the Blue” had a pretty exciting ride hitting 20kts in a 25kt puff with a reefed main and small asymmetric spinnaker tugging the boat northward surfing the swell.

Day three start, light winds for a change

The strong winds persisted on Tuesday with a strong wind warning covering the whole of the coast so racing had to be cancelled for that day. Fortunately, most skippers opted to sail on the lay day, Thursday, to make up for the dropped day. Sailing started in earnest on Wednesday with winds consistently around 20kts. Two races around a mile long upwind “sausage” course with each division starting ten minutes apart. Day two, Thursday was a repeat of day one for division four but division one and two got to head out to Snapper Island and back. By day three the winds had dropped to be around 12kts and most boats could hang their big kites from the masthead making a pretty sight. The course was a repeat of day one. The final day, Saturday, winds picked up again to near 18kts in the morning but dropping off as the day progressed. The course was a nearly two-mile upwind leg with a triangle which let the asymmetric spinnakers do their magic and the sports boats surfed down the following sea only to be hampered by an upwind finish.

The bidding gets hot!

Results were “Volare” a credible 6th out of 15 boats, “Impulse” 9th and “Yes” 13th. In division 2, “Centinela” came 2nd only missing out on 1st place by one point. In division 4, “Kaizen 2” did their usual sailing magic and came 2nd out of eight boats in spite of starting with a handicap of .80 as compared with the other “J’s” on around .77, “X2” came third, “Out of the Blue” came 6th having missed two races with broken gear and “Grannuaile” came in 7th having had to pull out of one race. Even so, the all-girl (?) crew put in a great performance with one crewmember having a $460 sex change then auctioning her pink outfit (down to her knickers) raising an amazing $1140 for Sailability Cairns.

Month-end Social Night

This was postponed as a large contingent were away battling in the Port Douglas Race Week.

Ellis Beach Month-end sailing postponed

The next Sail Ellis day, last Sunday of this month is Sunday the 24th June. See you there.

Sailability gets a shot in the arm – Andy Murray

Please disregard the “fake news” above. Mal Stevens, you’re a bloody legend!!
Mal decided that because he’d been asked by about five boats to crew for them for the Quicksilver Port Douglas Race Week, we should auction his services to the highest bidder and donate the proceeds to Sailability Cairns! What a top idea!
Being a modest sort of bloke, he put a reserve of $5 on himself. The bidding was enthusiastic and much to everybody’s delight he ended up being purchased by the all-girl crew on “Grannuaile” (otherwise affectionately known as The Pink Granny) for the amazing sum of $460 on the condition that he wears a pink dress for each race.
The girls bought him a different outfit for each race.

Grenouille “all-girl” crew, ready to race

That wasn’t the end of it though, because we then auctioned 3 of his outfits (including the one he was wearing) on the last night. Thanks to the successful bidders for their generosity: John the Baptist, bid $200, Cambell Corbett, who bid $180 and Townsville Yacht Club, who bid $250 for the dress he was wearing. Combine that with the $460 auction money and $50 that someone pushed into his hand and we come up with $1140 for Sailability Cairns!!
How good is that?!?! We are forever grateful to Mal, without doubt, the bravest sailor at the Quicksilver Port Douglas Race Week and is Sailability Cairns’s very favourite person.
THANK YOU MATE !! And thank you to all the bidders.


Dinghy Learn to Sail – Third Course has started  

The course will be held on Saturdays from 8.30am on 2pm, and even if you haven’t registered for this one, come down to the Boat Shed to see what it’s all about. (Not to be confused with the Boat Shed restaurant which is actually not a “shed” at all)

Already participants in the last course have found places on yachts sailing on Saturday’s and Wednesdays. In addition, there is Sail Ellis Beach on the last Sunday of every month where you can hone your skills on a Laser or catamaran.

2ndJune 08:30 AM 2:00 PM
9th June 08:30 AM 2:00 PM
16th June 08:30 AM 2:00 PM
23rd June 08:30 AM 2:00 PM

The program which will go for 4 weeks and is designed to teach all the key skills required to sail a small sailing vessel safely.

Great fun for all the family. For more information please contact the office on cyc@cairns.net.au

Fees of $200 / student for the full course or if you are a family group please contact the office



Check out the following link on having fun sailing


Overview Your Discover Sailing journey starts here as you learn and master the fundamental skills of sailing and are introduced to the fun of dinghy sailing in a safe and supportive environment.
Length 25 hours
Outcomes This will allow participants the freedom of sailing dinghies with the guidance of a Yachting Australia dinghy instructor
Pre-requisites Water confident Stinger and sun protection clothing is essential
7 years & older
Who should do this course? This course is recommended to anyone wishing to learn to sail an off the beach sailing dinghy. Continue along the pathway to achieving your Better Sailing and Racing certificates.


Ellis Beach

Ellis monthly Regatta on the 24th June. Here are the boat hire and event entry fees. Get in early as boats will soon be snapped up.

Food / meals / BBQ will be available. Bring some cash.

If you are hiring a boat, please help keep equipment together, so the next person hiring the boat doesn’t have to hunt through the Clubhouse to find missing parts. Each boat has a number to help with this. If something is missing or broken, please let Scott or Barry know. These dinghies only stay serviceable with your help.



Coming UP – This Month – download nomination form here

Saturday 16th – Anniversary Regatta. Race 1. The Robert Leitner Memorial Trophy Yorkeys Knob Race, down to the port entrance marker at Yorkeys & back.

Sunday 17 June – Anniversary Regatta continues. Race 2 and 3. Bay Races, most likely a windward – leeward (sausage) followed by a triangle race. Prizes will be awarded at the annual presentation event Saturday 1 December 2018

Sunday 24th June – Ellis Beach. Off the beach racing & just mucking about in boats. BBQ available.

Sunday 24th June 8am to 1pm – Boatshed Sale (Garage Sale) – Bring your boating related surplus stuff to the boat shed by Saturday 23rd with price and sellers name marked thereon and we will sell it for you on the day with a 10% commission going to junior sailing. Contact Wazza 0427994450. Of course, you can also buy some of the goods too!

Saturday 30th June –  2nd Ladies Race – Sam Cadman Series Race 4

WAGS – Every Wednesday. A fun sailing day with others, stress-free and a chance for non-members to sail for the day, just $20 gets you on a boat. Be at the Boat Shed at 12. No need to call anyone, just turn up. Backpackers welcome, the best value day out on the water you can have in Cairns.

Connect to the calendar HERE; you can download a .pdf copy to your phone or sync the calendar.

Commodore’s Commands

“Pollyanna”, our trusty support boat is presently out of the water getting her bottom sandblasted in preparation for the application of anti-fouling paint. This should keep her weed & barnacle free. She should be serviceable for the Anniversary Regatta.

“Pollyanna” gets pampered

Thanks to positive discussions with the new Ports North management the J24 berths have been relocated from the mud at F finger to a deeper location at the beginning of G finger. There is now just room for three J’s so our training J24, “Grannuiale” has a home together with “G&T” and “Summertime Blues”.

Technical Corner

The handicap system using Top Yacht.

When a boat enters a club race, it will be allocated a performance handicap for that race, called its Allocated Handicap (AH).  This AH will be taken from the TopYacht database or will be supplied by the Club Handicapper. TopYacht calculates the results of each race and also recalculates the handicap for each boat for the next race.

After each race a Back Calculated Handicap (BCH) is generated/calculated for each boat. This is the HC a boat needed to be placed equal on HC corrected finish time with every other boat in that race. This is a direct measure of this boat when compared to others in the fleet. For most fleets the reference boat for this calculation is the boat that was placed 45% down the fleet. This reference boat is presumed to have sailed exactly at their AHC. Those in front of it are assumed to have sailed above/better than their AHC and those below conversely. Time has shown the 45% works well for most fleets but may need a small adjustment for some fleets. It the reference point is incorrect then the HCs for the whole fleet will slowly drift over the season.

Time Correction Factor (TCF) and is used to convert a boats elapsed race time to a corrected time. (Cord T) Thus if a boat takes 100 minutes to complete the race and its Performance Handicap  (or TCF) was 0.75 the its corrected time (CT) will be 75 minutes (100 x 0.75). The boat with the lowest corrected time (CT) is the race winner.

Results from race 6, Port Douglas Race Week. Division One


ED: Got a story/ drama/adventure to share? Put it down on paper (USB stick?). Anyone can have a go. Please call the editor, Hew on 0409976888. Perhaps you can tell me your story over a drink or two? Email at iwantone2@icloud.com (We can fix spelling and grammar slip-ups)


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