Sail past, good crowd at KI Yacht Club opening day

A good crowd assembled to hear mayor Michael Pengilly officially open the Kangaroo Island sailing season for 2019/20.

The KI Yacht Club held its open day on Saturday, October 19 to officially start the season

The mayor made comment about his involvement with the KI Yacht Club and how he sailed here as a youngster and in later years ran the rescue boat Viking with Bob Pain.

He commended the committee for keeping the club going under trying times and mentioned in particular the success of the Friday night meals.

Mr Pengilly wished the yacht club all the best for the coming season, which was followed by a barbecue lunch.

Of interest was the number of golden oldies past sailors attending and some of whom have been seconded to help out.

Life member Shirley Bell was on hand to help out on the bridge and Graham Barrett will be back to run the sail training.

As soon as the barbecue lunch was completed, Steve and Oscar Morgan in Pacer 6 headed for the sea wanting to make the most of the first sail of the season, eventually coming ashore with "frozen fingers".

The conditions were a little unfavourable for opening day with the wind blowing in from the SSW making for a good port course if racing was happening, blowing at 12-14 knots and gusting to 18 - 20 knots.

The wind was too strong and too unpredictable for the three Holdast Trainers, learners, Arlen Pledge and Jack Anderson in Amber Jack, Harley Hodgens and Tim Krause in Rainbow Warrior and Huon Ley and Dale Paepke in Wind Wolf, who all rigged up and got as far as the blue line before getting help from the adults to unrig and return to the safety of the shore.

Kids' sail training will be starting next Saturday at midday with Graham Barrett.

Three other Pacers set sail, Scott Ellson in Pacer 3 taking out his two daughters Kiralee and Teagan and Nathan Ley in Pacer 5 with newcomer to the Island Nathan Russell and Anna and Khalil Hadland in Pacer 8, very nicely colour coordinated.

But who forgot to sign on and their excuse for coming ashore was everybody else was.

The Haselgrove built dinghy with Dad Frank crewing and daughter Julia skippering gave the excuse for coming ashore, Dad saying he was cold 'cause he gave his jumper to his daughter but he has no excuse for the hour glass in the jib.

Mark Agnew with youngster Finn Meadows in Arrow Flying Feline IV had a few issues getting started off the beach as the flagship was in his way.

Rescue boat Viking was manned by Steve Dixon and Steve Gregor and along with all the senior boats took part in the sail past the flagship "Spirit of Hydro".

"Three Cheers for the Commodore" were given to Phil Trenaman and his crew Paul Coleby. After a very windy and wet social sail all adjourned into the yacht club for a welcome drink and afternoon tea. - The Scribe