ENTRIES have opened for the 2019 Festival of Sails, with the Royal Geelong Yacht Club hosting three Australian championships during the Australia Day long weekend regatta.
The VX One Class Australian Championship, Australian Sportsboat Championship and the J111 Australian Championship will all run during the January 26-28 festival.
Festival of Sails chair Stuart Dickson said it was an honour for the RGYC to host three championships during the one event.
“We can usually expect to attract one Australian championship or a world championship every other year, so three nationals in one year is a bit extraordinary.
“In 2018 we hosted the Sydney 38 national championship during Festival of Sails and the year before that it was the Viper World Championship.
“It is great for the RGYC that these associations want to partner their Australian championships, and often a world championship, with our regatta.”
Off the back of January’s 175th Festival of Sails, organisers expect another great showing, particularly as the Australian Yachting Championship will again precede the festival, from January 22-24 hosted by the Royal Melbourne Yacht Squadron.
A two-race mini-series for RGYC members and competitors who haven’t entered a Festival of Sails for the past five years (or ever) is on offer for the first time.
“The idea of this new division is that cruisers who may not be interested in the full series can be part of the Passage Race on Australia Day then the twilight race on the Sunday. It’s a taste of the full festival on-water and delights of the busy shoreside program without the three-day commitment,” Mr Dickson said.
“The Corio Bay Class Series is another new division; it’s an inshore-only series of four races for those owners whose boats don’t meet the required safety for the Melbourne to Geelong Passage Race.”
Festival of Sails online entries close on January 11, 2019 at midnight, and thereafter a late fee of $250 may apply up until the final closing date of January 15.