RMYS Juniors WIN the 2020 Stonehaven Cup
Recap article & photos submitted by Graeme Savage
RMYS Member & Junior Parent
This year marked the 91st running of the Stonehaven Cup, the longest continuously contested national junior championship for the Australian cadet class dinghy hosted by the St. Helens Yacht squadron for the very first time. Clubs competing in this years event were RMYS, RBYC, St Helens YS and King Island YC
With a recent 1, 2, 3 sweep of places in the Lady Stonehaven Cup hosted by RBYC at the George Mac Regatta a month earlier, there were high hopes for the RMYS Junior Squad.
Two invitational trophy races launched the Regatta on Sunday the 12th of January. RMYS crews got off to a great start with RMYS Heather winning the first race (The Spirit of Tasmania invitational), followed by RMYS Scarlett in third and RMYS Matthew Norton in fifth. In the second invitational race (Andrew Linacre Memorial) St. Helen’s struck back strongly with first and second places with King island finishing in third. It was clear that competition for the Stonehaven was going to be strong.
Racing for the Stonehaven commenced on Monday and competitors were met with fresh breezes which favoured our boats. In what was to be its trademark for the entire series, RMYS Scarlett set a pattern of consistent performances finishing with 4th, 2nd and 1st in the three races for the day. Whilst struggling in the first race, RMYS Matthew Norton finished the day with a 2nd and 3rd finish in the last two races.
Commencing racing on Tuesday confidence was high amongst our squad, however taking advantage of lighter winds and equipped with local knowledge any thoughts of a clean sweep repeat at the George Mac were quickly erased as St. Helens showed they were a force to reckoned with, their boat Spirit of St. Helens winning all three races for the day and their other two boats sharing in a second, two fourths and a fifth. In the lighter conditions RMYS Scarlett had consistent performances with 2nd, 5th, and 3rd placings and RMYS Heather had 3rd and 4th finishes.
Tuesday nights mid regatta function was held at the St. Helen’s RSL. The timing was perfect for our squad as the results from earlier in the day had diminished confidence and one could tell the St.Helen’s squad were up and about, we all were in need of a laugh and a smile. The evening started off low key however once Elvis hit the stage it didn’t take long for the RMYS contingent to hit the dance floor. Things didn’t look good at first, with some very poor dancing to “Return to Sender” by two of the parents (who shall remain nameless) and it looked like everyone would be in for a long night. Things improved slightly with a RMYS inspired conga line however once Elvis diversified and played Proud Mary, the RMYS crew did themselves proud and the smiles were back.
Wednesday was a lay day with the squad members taking the opportunity to enjoy the sights of St. Helens and do their own thing during the day. This was followed up in the evening by a squad get together for a BBQ and the arrival of RMYS Commodore Charles Meredith. A hotly contested music trivia quiz inspired by the RMYS Heather crew capped off a great night.
With our Commodore’s arrival the previous evening, an inspiring coach’s address from Clio first thing in the morning and an early morning sailing masterclass conducted by Ron with Anthony in RYMS Kestrel, Thursday brought about a change in fortune for the RMYS team. Sparked into action and with winds having picked up, the RMYS squad got back to business winning all three races for the day. RMYS Scarlett finished the day winning the first two races of the day, RMYS Matthew Norton finished with a 3rd and 2nd in race one and two and then came home with 1st in the last race. RMYS Heather finished a very competitive days sailing with a 4th, 5th and 5th placing.
Things were looking tight on the results board and leaving the club on Thursday night everyone believed the Stonehaven was still up for grabs. It wasn’t however till late in the evening when the results board was more heavily scrutinized over a beer or two that an error in addition was discovered. Factoring in dropping the worst two results and with double checking and conferencing amongst the RMYS contingent early Friday morning before the last race, it became apparent that barring a disqualification in the final race, RMYS Scarlett had won the regatta and The Stonehaven Cup was ours and coming home to RMYS.
Keeping that knowledge under wraps, a tactical decision to stay out of trouble was made for race ten with RMYS Scarlett keeping well clear of other boats at the start. RMYS Matthew Norton raced very strongly, initially having the lead but then fading in lightening conditions to finish the race fourth, avoiding trouble RMYS Scarlett came home strongly in fifth and RMYS Heather closing out in eighth.
Presentation night was held at The Wharf restaurant at St. Helens. With the Stonehaven Cup returning to RMYS a great night was had by all. The enthusiasm amongst our entire team was fantastic, the squads support for each other was witnessed by loud cheers everytime a RMYS crew were called up for to receive race medallions for finishing in the places.
In what was a fitting result for the hosts, St. Helens narrowly won the Otto A Meik teams trophy from RMYS. The RMYS junior squad warmly congratulates St. Helens for their achievements and sincerely thanks St. Helens Yacht Squadron and Commodore Glenn STEWART for their hospitality and a brilliantly run regatta.
Congratulations to our successful crews;
RMYS Scarlet 1030:
Patrick Walby (skipper)
Aurora Davey (main hand)
Oliver Skerritt (fore deck)
- 1st place overall – Stonehaven Cup Winners
- 3 x first place medallions
- 2 x second places medallions
- 1 x third place medallions.
RMYS Mathew Norton 1023:
Jye Preston (skipper)
Ryan Savage (main hand)
Carli Preston (fore deck)
- 4th place overall
- 1 x first place race medallions
- 2 x second place race medallions
- 2 x third place race medallions.
RMYS Heather 1035:
Alex Ward (skipper)
Gus Wahlqvist (main hand)
Lachlan Skerritt (fore deck)
- 7th place overall
- 1 x first place medallions (The Spirit of Tasmania invitational race)
- 1 x third place race medallions.
Anthony Simopolous (reserve crew member – all boats)
Unable to present at St. Helens but also vital part of our junior squad during the year;
The RMYS Junior Squad would like to sincerely thank the following;
Clio Healy for her amazing coaching, commitment, dedication and support throughout the year.
Ron Brown for his amazing coaching, commitment, dedication and volunteering so much of his time to the squad.
RMYS, Commodore Charles Meredith, Captain Monica Jones, Committee and General Manager Matt Solly for their support of the junior squad.
RMYS members for their encouragement and generous support of the squad throughout the year, particularly with fundraising events.
RMYS Junior squad parents committee for their support and commitment to squad members, co-ordinating fund raising events, assisting with training, supporting members in travelling to St. Helens.