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Stingray/Cobra Nationals 2008/09


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The Stingray/Cobra Catamaran nationals got underway on Saturday with the Stingrays this year outnumbering the Cobras.

5 Cobras and 5 Stingrays hit the water for the invitations race on Saturday with the 6th Stingray showing up from S.A. fashionably late at dinner time.

The Stingrays are 4 from SA, 1 NSW and 1 VIC. The SA and NSW boats are leading the way with the VIC boat (me) a little further behind.

Thanks to the Rosedale Yacht Club for doing a great job so far!

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  • 2 weeks later...

Competition run and won!

Results can be found at this link:


Day 3 of the event was possibly the most interesting day with an absolute drifter being shortened in the morning followed by conditions that ended up gusting to over 30kts in the afternoon! Todd on Crash & Burn went around the top mark and begun the screaming reach to the wing mark that saw 6 stingrays going hell for leather in fairly close proximity, he then made the wise choice and continued that line all the way to the clubhouse...

The rest of us continued, but all bar Justin and Bill on Wildcard ended up with the same DNF result: With a few breakages and a few injuries the next days placid 20-25kts was enough to see those same five boats sit it out on the beach. Once again Justin and Bill gave a lesson in how to keep a stingray upright in a blow!

Big thanks must go to:

Rosebud Yacht Club for great hospitality and fantastic race (and rescue) management!

Rick and Robert Nixon (Cobras) for doing the organization of paperwork, T-Shits etc.

All of the Stingray Sailors from SA and NSW for making the trip and teaching me so much more about the boat I sail, and also for tolerating the revolving door on my boat that my various crews utilised during the week!

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Originally posted by phil_taipan117:

Two more dying classes.

And of course now you can add the Tornado to that as well. With no more gold to chase at the end of the Olympic rainbow there is no reason for the top sailors to stay in a forty year old class.

Or should we perhaps look at it another way and say that now there are sailors that can afford to get into a Tornado, even though it too will end being a dying class.

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When you think about it, the medium to long term future of most classes is not that promising, and by inference catamaran sailing in general.

Obviously the most successful classes in terms of numbers are the H16 and A cat. Even in the A class, the average age must be well over 40, and the those blokes that have been sailing in the class for 20 years or more can't keep sailing for ever.

F18's numbers seem to have levelled off and it appears that the F16's won't ever attain critical mass, here or overseas.

Other classes, such as the Mossie and Taipan are just hanging in there, being sailed in a couple of clubs spread between 2 or 3 states.

The deep recession that we are about to enter could be the nail in the coffin for some of the marginally viable classes. Afterall, who is going to invest in a new (or used)boat of any class when job security and the mortgage are the major issues.

Its all rather depressing really for someone who sailed through the 70's and 80's, the boom period in terms of cat sailing.

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Taipan 4.9 = Great Boat! One up it is expensive! Two up both crew need to be fairly light!

Taipan 5.7 = Another Dying Class! HALF as many boats as the stingray nationals!

F18 = Great Boat! Extremely expensive!

F16 = Great Boat! One up Extremely expensive! Two up weight begins to become an issue for heavier crews!

A Class = Mega Expensive! Anti-Social! Highly Competitive!

STINGRAY = Dying Class! Inexpensive! F-ing Fast! The real deal in terms of Cats despite old design! Pretty good way to get into cat sailing for a student (thats me)!

I think there are too many classes of catamaran (and monos) around to be sustainable! But it is worth saying that the Stingray has its fair claim to being around as it was designed ~50yrs ago! Funny how a 50yr old design is still fast!

Despite the class dying I do find it disappointing that people want to rag on those who still have stingrays and are actively sailing them! Would it be better if we all just scrapped our boats!?!?

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Other than Phil's comment of them dying, no ones ragging the Stingray, its still a fast class. Just as with alot of classes certain factors in their history have hampered class numbers.

Take the 5.8 Nacra, they were nearly non-existant until recently, when they changed the jib and started to play with kite etc etc ppl left the class. Now the 5.8 is growing again.

Look at 14ft cats, as a whole (all classes) have been growing as ppl step out of bigger boats. I mean since when did you get 40-50 14fters at a regatta (Mannering Park). U have to look back the earlier years of the Koonawarra 14ft regatta.

Class numbers fluctuate, always have & always will.

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