SYC along with the World’s newest OK Dinghy Association to host 56th OK Dinghy Australian National Championship.
Registered in December 2016, Queensland’s Gold Coast are host to the World’s newest OK Dinghy association, a rapidly growing force here in Australia.
Starting with only two vessels in the Gold Coast fleet in 2015, the spectator fleet were intrigued at how competitive these two boats had become. Some 12 months later another boat tagged along, and another and another. The fleet rapidly started to grow from there, buying up all the older boats up the East coast of Australia.
“Stocks began to run low, so we had to look at other options. We found some moulds in Victoria and with thanks to Mark Fisher, they were sent North to our local respected boat builders, whom are in the midst of producing some high quality, strong and on weight (or Slightly under with correctors) reasonable priced OK’s,” said David Vincent, President of the Queensland OK Dinghy Association.
Currently the Qld Association has 15 registered boats (including 2 associate Members) in its short existence, and on any given Sunday eight of these boats are regularly on water. Members come from far and wide with two Members travelling from Brisbane and associate member Glen Williams travelling from the Big River Sailing Club in NSW each week to join the Gold Coast fleet. There are three regular women, our youngest competitor, 17-year-old featherweight Danah Clements, competes weekly and has shown quite rapid improvement. All these women will be contesting in next year’s nationals. We are proud to have such a diverse fleet of all ages here that is improving rapidly at quite a competitive rate.
Southport Yacht Club (SYC) is home base to ten vessels, with six not too far away and a further 16 more recently under constructions within the South East.
Five SYC sailors ventured to the 2017 Nationals in Drummoyne, NSW. “We all had a great time, met a great bunch of fellow sailors and showed them how to drink Qld Style! We all learnt a lot about the OK’s,” said David. This was the fleet’s first event, and what great results were had. Kelvin Holdt rattled a few cages to finish in sixth (6th) place, Elizabeth Williams sailed exceptionally well to finish first (1st) place, Ladies Division and 15th overall. We had very mixed results throughout the regatta for all sailors in the testing conditions, however a very well sailed regatta for all.
Very exciting times are ahead for Southport Yacht Club and the OK Dinghy Association of Queensland INC. hosting Australia’s 56th International OK Dinghy National Championships. Held in the waters offshore of Surfers Paradise on the Gold Coast, from Tuesday 2nd to Sunday 7th January 2018. All welcome, with entry available online through the following link: http://www.southportyachtclub.com.au/ok-dinghy-national-championships-2018/ Accommodation option are also arranged through the entry portal.
We are expecting 70 plus boats, so please enter if you are up for some competition. Hope to see you all on the Gold Coast soon,” said Dave.
Image Caption: Gold Coast Fleet competing at the 2017 55th International OK Dinghy National Championships, Drummoyne, NSW.