FEBRUARY 14 2011

Day Four and Wrap Up of Australian Masters Championships


With variable winds up to 18 knots it was a battle of fitness, endurance and stamina on the final day of the 2011 Australian Laser Masters Nationals in Port Stephens, NSW. The nine newly crowned champions are;

  • Laser 4.7 Masters Champion, Claire Heenan (NSW) 
  • Laser Radial Apprentice Master Champion, Owen McMahon (VIC)
  • Laser Radial Master Champion, David Early (NSW)
  • Laser Radial Grand Master Champion, John Sprague (NSW)
  • Laser Radial Great Grand Master Champion, Kerry Waraker (NSW)
  • Laser Standard Apprentice Master Champion, Brett Beyer (NSW)
  • Laser Standard Master Champion, Bradley Taylor (QLD)
  • Laser Standard Grand Master Champion, Colin Dibb (WA)
  • Laser Standard Great Grand Master Champion, Graham Oborn (NSW)

Claire Heenan won the title on count back from Martin Brady after scoring a second and winning the final race, hence the saying, ‘you are only as good as your last race!’. Having had equipment issues on the opening day, Claire was playing catch up and couldn’t afford any more mistakes in the series. She rose to the challenge and sailed a great series enabling her to discard her results from the dramas of the first day. Claire is the first ever Australian Laser 4.7 Open Masters Champion.

Kerry Waraker won both final races to secure the Australian Laser Radial Great Grand Master Championship title from Lew Verdon in silver and Kevin Phillips in Bronze. Graham Oborn won the Laser Standard Great Grand Masters with a day to spare. Don Roach won Silver and Maurice Meyer won Bronze. Colin Dibb won with a massive 20 point lead in the Laser Standard Grand Master fleet with second and third placed sailors, Stefan Kurys-Romer and Mark Phillips on equal points. The points were closer in the Laser Standard Master fleet with just seven points between first and third. Bradley Taylor won over Sean Atherton-Feeney and Mark Tonner-Joyce.   

Having slipped down to third place on the penultimate day after two disqualifications for premature starts, Brett Beyer was under pressure to perform on the final day. He managed a win and a third which was enough to win the Laser Standard Apprentice Master Championship title. Anthony Baisden won silver by just two points from Brett Morris.  

John Sprague made a big jump on the final day, winning both the races which took him from third place to winning the title of Laser Radial Grand Master Champion. Michael Pitt won silver and Christopher Meech won Bronze. A very modest John Sprague talked of his win and why he loves Laser sailing, “It was really close racing. I knew I had to win both races to secure the title and I pulled it off but others were just as deserving as me. It paid to work the left side today due to the out running tide”.

“I have sailed Lasers for 30 years and like the fact that they are simple, quick and easy to rig and everyone is equal with the equipment being one-design. The best part of racing Lasers is making so many friends, the fantastic camaraderie, everyone is a mate and here to have fun, we are all like one big crew”.  

The Winners

Laser Standard Apprentice  
1 Brett Beyer (NSW) 10pts
2 Anthony Baisden (QLD) 16pts
3 Brett Morris (VIC) 18pts  

Laser Standard Master
1 Bradley Taylor (QLD) 12pts
2 Sean Atherton-Feeney (NSW) 16pts
3 Mark Tonner-Joyce (VIC) 19pts

Laser Standard Grand Master 
1 Colin Dibb (WA) 9pts
2 Stefan Kurys-Romer (WA) 29pts
3 Mark Phillips (NSW) 29pts

Laser Standard Great Grand Master
1 Graham Oborn (NSW) 9pts
2 Don Roach (NSW) 18pts
3 Maurice Meyer (QLD) 23pts

Laser Radial Apprentice Master
1 Owen McMahon (VIC) 12pts
2 Richard Bott (NSW) 12pts
3 Martin Wilson (NSW) 20pts

Laser Radial Master

1 David Early (NSW) 15pts
2 Mark Kennedy (QLD) 22pts
3 John Jagger (VIC) 26pts
1women: Vanessa Dudley 5thoverall

Laser Radial Grand Master
1 John Sprague (NSW) 14pts
2 Michael Pitt (QLD) 19pts
3 Christopher Meech (NSW) 23pts

Laser Radial Great Grand Master
1 Kerry Waraker (QLD) 10pts
2 Lew Verdon (NSW) 20pts
3 Kevin Phillips (NSW) 22pts

Laser 4.7
1 Claire Heenan (NSW) 11pts
2 Martin Brady (NSW) 11pts
3. Bronwyn Mitchell (NSW) 22pts


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