The second heat of the 18ft Skiff JJ Giltinan Trophy took place yesterday afternoon

Another easterly breeze, stronger this time but still difficult due to its varying strength and direction, shuffled the finishing order for the 18ft Skiffs in Sydney Harbour yesterday afternoon (Sunday) for Heat 2 of the JJ Giltinan Trophy. The course was the same basically windward/leeward one, starting off Kirribilli and using the Rose Bay turning mark.

The race was notable for a closely fought battle between Trevor Barnabas, sailing with his son Trent and Matt Felton on Omega Smeg, and RMW Marine sailed by Rob Greenhalgh with his brother Peter and Dan Johnson. The lead changed hands several times, with Omega Smeg showing a slight advantage upwind and RMW Marine holding the edge downwind.

The Omega Smeg team looked confident on the windward legs to Rose Bay, no doubt helped by Trevor’s long experience of 18 footer racing in the harbour, where it is important not only to read and make the best use of the shifts, but also to choose a route that is likely to offer the best pressure, and they did this to perfection.

At the end, Omega Smeg held a lead of 26 seconds over RMW Marine, leaving these two boats at the head of the leaderboard with the British team holding the advantage by a single point. Obviously it is still early days after only two heats, but these teams will be pleased to be already at the head of affairs, and they will be aiming to build on their advantage in the middle stages of the regatta. With Trevor Barnabas having won this championship on five previous occasions, and Rob Greenhalgh having been at the head of the world rankings for the past eighteen months, they both have the form to take the biggest prize in Skiff sailing.

The British sailors had a significantly better day in the stronger breeze, with the Richards brothers and Andy Fairley just making the top ten on Radii, and Jarrod Simpson, Simon Nearn and Harvey Hillary taking twelfth place on Ernst & Young. Neale Fitzgerald, Andy Jefferies and Paul Hargreaves on Computacenter, and the Penfold brothers and Andrew James on Link Associates sailed well to finish in sixteenth and seventeenth places. The other British finishing positions are shown below.

Tomorrow (Monday) is the first of the two traditional lay days, and we shall bring you a summary of the event so far, together with the points situation after the first two heats.

Results (Heat 2)

1. Omega Smeg, Trevor Barnabas, AUS

2. RMW Marine, Rob Greenhalgh, GBR

3. Casio Seapathfinder, Michael Coxon, AUS

4. Aristocrat, Gary Phillips, AUS

5. Total Recall, Tony Hannan, AUS

6. Computer Associates, Jack Young, AUS

Other British

10. Radii, Andy Richards, Andy Fairley and Dave Richards

12. Ernst & Young, Jarrod Simpson, Simon Nearn and Harvey Hillary

16. Computacenter, Neale Fitzgerald, Andy Jefferies and Paul Hargreaves

17. Link Associates, Tim Penfold, Andrew James and Will Penfold

21. Ovington Boats, Dave Ovington, Martin Goodlad and Roy Goodlad

23. Hermes, Ed Browne, Mark Tate and Anthony Esse

24. Ronstan, Geoff Carveth, Steve McLean and Jeremy Reed

25. Base 1, Rob Dulson, Paul Constable and Alec McKinlay