Sean Kirkjian wins the 2017 Quantum Nationals


Sean Kirkjian’s Pacific Sailing School team admirably aided by the inimitable ‘AJ’ Tony Reynolds and the school graduates in ‘Sailpac’ have taken out the 2017 nationals with a solid and consistent result over Shane Guanaria, helming class stalwart Arthur Crother’s ‘Kaotic’ by 4 points. Brendan Lee sailing ‘By the Lee’ from Melbourne was third by another 7 points.

A recent record fleet of 25 boats competed in the nationals hosted by the Cronulla Sailing Club, located in Port Hacking on the southern edge of Sydney. Many competitors were visiting Cronulla for the first time and have come away with great memories and glowing opinions of the regatta. Cronulla Sailing Club ironed out all the bugs identified in the NSW States held in early November and ran a faultless regatta. From the brilliant sailing waters on the ocean side to the picturesque Gunamatta Bay where the club is located (5 min walk to the surf beach on the other side of the small Cronulla peninsula) and the friendly, helpful and happy club volunteers serving us dinner every night off the BBQ, I didn’t hear one grumble about the running and management of the regatta. I an confident in saying there are many looking forward to another in the future – even those from the harbour loved it !

Close racing in the 2017 Nationals at Cronulla

Close racing in the 2017 Nationals at Cronulla

Out on the racetrack the competition was fierce, with black flags and consequent DSQs happening after each general recall, PRO Dave McLachlan ran a near faultless series, a couple of major wind changes right on the starting signal being the only difficulty encountered. The usual gladiators took out the top end of the results with the exception of Brendan Lee who is a rising star from the Sandringham fleet in Melbourne. Brendan has been putting in a major effort in both club and regatta racing and his 3rd place reflects this. Stephen Girdis sailing ‘Convicts’ took out 4th with Dave West’s ‘Ace’ being sailed by SA blow in crew Doug ‘El Fideldo’ Watson due to Dave’s wife’s medical emergency. Another great performance at the last minute by Doug.

‘Mr J24′ Hugo Ottaway sailing Bruschetta IV and NSW Class president John Crawford, took the next two from Steve O’Rourke, Simon Grain and Janette Syme rounding out the top ten.

Racing was generally light to medium in SE to NE breezes with most boats never pulling out jibs for the whole regatta. A 18 – 20 knot NE breeze tested some of the boats on the last day but not really causing any real trouble. Generally going left paid but not always and sometimes it was possible to find a wind bend on the right hand corner that gave you a few places. Racing was tight around the corners and the otherwise well behaved fleet experience a little shouting !

Janette Syme sailing ‘Wildfire’ took out the Thomo cup from brother Ron in ‘Kicking’ – a popular and deserving win.

Handicap results went much the same way as the OD results although with a reversal in order at the top. Winning with 51 points was Brendan Lee from Sean Kikjian on 52 and Stephen Girdis on 53, so a close finish there. Fourth was Shane Guanaria on 66 from Simon Grain on 67.

Full results are on the Cronulla site : here

Seven boats made the trip up from Melbourne and two (Robyn and Jim Townsend plus son Andrew) from South Australia (a substantial trip by any measure) – ten Cronulla boats and the rest from the harbour. All in all a good spread from around the country.

The Cronulla Club and its’ volunteers did a fantastic job in making us feel very welcome and efficiently ran the on-shore and on-water parts of the regatta. The success of the regatta is in no small way a result of work done over a long period of time by the enthusiastic Mick Reynolds (sadly being away during the regatta) and others in helping to build the Cronulla fleet. Running up to and during the regatta, Fiona Campbell, Bronwyn Elford, Rhonda Wodzinski and the team of volunteers serving up the BBQ dinner everyday, looking after launching and retrieving on the hardstand, the teams out on the water all did a fantastic job and on behalf of all the competitors and associations involved, we thank you for your magnificent efforts. A big thank you to Quantum and our other sponsors ; Spot a yacht, Afloat Magazine, Wet Tech, Aussea, Sailor Sunscreen, CBON, Explore Sailing.

Cronulla – you have many new converts to your magic location !

More pics are available on the Cronulla Facebook page

Onward and upward – you might like to plan for the annual Cronulla SC Queens Birthday Short Course regatta in June this year. The SA States are mid March and the Vic States are mid April. The NSW States are around the first weekend in November (likely to be back in the harbour) and of course the next Nationals are to be at the CYCSA in Adelaide in early Jan 2018 – see the regatta page in the near future for more details and dates.

2017 Quantum National Championships

Day 3 and we are sitting around waiting for the wind to come and the rain to stop.  The first two days racing has seen multiple race winners, but leading the OD series is multiple nationals winner Sean Kirkjian from Stephen Girdis and Shane Guanaria. Full results are available at

Crew needed for the J24 National Championships 4-7 January 2017

Jargon is looking for crew to sail in the Nationals 4-7 January out of Cronulla Sailing Club.  If you are available please call me ASAP  – Tony – 0427 788513

The Nationals Souvenir Booklet

At last year’s National AGM we made a decision to produce an A5 sized Souvenir Booklet containing information on the regatta, the Host club and course area and a comprehensive competitor list. This will be a great souvenir of the first J24 regatta to be held at Cronulla in – oh a billion years !

This means for you – our entrants, that we aim to have a page per boat for each entry. Each boat page is planned to look a bit like this:


Of course we can’t do it without your help – and no help – no booklet, so please, if you have entered the Nationals or plan to, please send me your details as follows so I can include you and your boat in the booklet.

Here’s what we need:

Boat name and number, plus club initials.

A pic of your boat – you must own the rights to use the pic you choose (no links to other sites please).

A short history of your boat and it’s and your achievements (as a skipper or crew if in another boat) over recent years.

Your crew list.

Please have a look at the sample above for an example. You might think this is a bit late notice but then we have only half the expected entries in to date, so we can’t produce without knowing who is to go into the book.

Remember it takes time to produce so we need both your entry in and your details by the 28th Decemer 2016 – otherwise you won’t be included.

Send your pic and info to me at

Cheers Simon.

Want to charter out your J24?

A team of competent sailors are looking for a J24 to charter for the 2017 National Championships in Cronulla.  If you have a measured boat available ( in Cronulla or Sydney that can easily be taken to Cronulla) that you can’t race your self for any reason, and are willing to negotiate a charter deal with the skipper, please let me know and I can put you in contact.

Paula 0404 539176

Quantum Sails J24 National Championships 2017

The Quantum Sails J24 National Championships will run over 4 days from 4-7 January 2017 at Cronulla Sailing Club, with a Invitation Race taking place on 3 January.  Please get your entries in ASAP.

You are reminded that we will be racing under the 2017-2020 Racing Rules of Sailing, and as per Rule 46, all skippers and crew need to be a member of a Yacht Club.

Quantum Sails J24 National Championships 2017 Sailing Instructions

Quantum Sails J24 National Championships 2017 Notice of Race

For anyone not a member of a yacht club, Cronulla Sailing Club are offering a Pro Rata rate to join – send in this form.

Cronulla Sailing Club Annual Sailing Membership form 2016-17

Quantum Sails J24 National Championships 2017 Entry Form


Online Entry

Event Website

Amendment to 2017 National AGM date and time


Item 6.5 on the Nationals NOR should read:

6.5    In the event of a re-sail, the date and time will be determined by the Race Committee.

Tuesday 3 January 2017

Registration. Measuring and Weigh In.                                            0800 – 0900hrs

1600 – 1700hrs

Invitation Race                                                      Warning Signal            1155hrs

Wednesday 4 January 2017  

Registration. Measuring and Weigh In.                                             0800 – 0900hrs

Wednesday 4 January to Saturday 7 January 2017

Racing                                                                  First Warning Signal    1055hrs

Thursday 5 January 2017

J24 National Association AGM                                                                  0800hrs


Quantum Sails J24 National Championships 4-7 January 2017

The Quantum Sails J24 National Championships will run over 4 days from 4-7 January 2017 at Cronulla Sailing Club, with a Invitation Race taking place on 3 January.

Quantum Sails J24 National Championships 2017 Notice of Race

Quantum Sails J24 National Championships 2017 Entry Form

Online Entry

Event Website

Remember that we still have two carbon fibre spinnaker poles, exclusively for sale to NSW members for $857 so if you want a lighter, stronger pole for the Nationals let Paula know on 0404 539176.

Anyone intending to race who is not currently a NSW J24 Association member is encouraged to join now.

Notice of National Association AGM. This is to be held at Cronulla Sailing Club on 5/1/17 at 0800hrs. If you have items you want added to the agenda they should be sent by email to the National President by 10/12/16

J24 NSW Membership Application 2016/17

AUS 2632 J FORCE – For Sale

Get into class racing with J Force

Get into class racing with J Force

Get back into competitive team sport with a great deal on a mid level Sandy J.

J FORCE is up for sale and priced for a quick sale at $9,500.00

Near new rudder, tiller, mast and rigging and 2 yr old carbon fibre spinnaker pole, 2 Mainsails, 2 Jibs, 1 Genoa and 2 Spinnakers. All fittings have been regularly maintained.

Comes with a 3.5 Hp Tohatsu long shaft outboard motor fully maintained.

Life jackets and horse shoe life ring.

Located at Sandringham and comes with a hardstand trolley if you keep it here.

Contact Warren Campbell on 0418 530 670

(Ed – seriously folks this is a good deal buy)



John Crawford’s Innamincka flying down the run, Convicts Revenge and the surf behind


‘The Shire’ as it is known to the sedentary Australian TV watching population and the people who live there is an area around 30km south of the Sydney CBD centred on Cronulla that has been known in the past for a bit of rough and tumble.

It’s a slightly secret place that the rest of the greater Sydney population rarely go to and that’s the way the locals like it. But things are changing – in a big way. After a few years of Mid Winter regattas and a bit of water testing by a few outsiders, the J24 circus is coming to town in a big way with an expected 30+ boat fleet (the largest in 20 plus years) for the 2017 Nationals in January.

An indication of that was the Quantum Sails 2016 NSW State Championships just held over the weekend of the 5-6 November, with plenty of rough and tumble on the water and characters like ‘Hoody’, ‘Bucko’ and ‘Magoo’ neck deep in the proceedings it’s no surprise the regatta was a roaring success.

You can easily miss the yacht club entrance, but you couldn’t miss the 500 plus regular Friday evening revellers on the terrace (apparently it is a great place to meet a new lady friend for the evening) and for the gladiators and crews getting their boats ready for the weekend’s racing in the hot afternoon sun, it did seem like a strange mix of hot sweaty yachties side by side with the tarted up Cronulla youth (and those exploring their on-going mid life crisis’s).

Saturday morning and the balcony belongs to the yachties again but the wind is howling down Gunnamatta Bay straight into the assembled protagonists. A postponement is called and the Wise is thinking about a sit down lunch with cold refreshing wine – Terry is running his two sailing school yachts from his RIB – I decline on the basis of the dropping forecast and the need to be clear headed if we get on the water.

Some of the fleet downwind with Cronulla in the background

Some of the fleet downwind with Cronulla in the background

That’s just what happens and our biggest fleet in years of 22 boats hit the water for the sail out to the start line off the main Cronulla surf beach on the opposite side of the small peninsular that is the southern end of Cronulla. The wind did actually drop for a bit but the three afternoon races were sailed in 15 to 30+ knot SW winds and a huge 3-4m SE swell that grew rapidly in the last race making for some exciting racing with many wipeouts. With huge surf breaking on the main beach on one side of the course and a tsunami like set of waves breaking on the reef on the other side it was, shall we say exciting, for those not normally used to these ocean conditions.

It isn’t strange anymore how the good guys seem to get all the good luck and the names on top of the afternoon’s honour roll proved that experience, cunning and a fair bit of bravery carried the day. Arthur Crothers showing off a new set of Doyle’s and with Shane Guanaria at the helm of Kaotic took the first race by clear couple of minutes from Dave West in Ace and Steve Girdis in Convicts Revenge only 3 sec apart, John Crawford  in Innamincka a further 4 sec back in forth, so the usual bunch plus a few that fought it out in most of the following races and formed the top pack of the regatta.

Race two saw a general recall and a black flag, another tough fight with Convicts taking the honours from Innamincka and our own ‘Jet’ (sailed by me and my brave crew) the first of what the ‘cockroaches’ (NSW people) call the ‘Mexicans’ from Melbourne – down south of the border, Kaotic came home forth.

Race three and the wind was getting stronger from the SW and the swell getting bigger from the SE, we are sailing in an arena of wind whipped water surrounded by a ring of huge breaking white surf and quite a few of the gladiators are now beaten and returning home. Those who stayed flogged their way upwind and screamed downwind, some successfully and others not so. Many not using their kites. Steve Girdis showed his skill to take a narrow win from Kaotic, Innamincka and Jet.

After three races we were all happy to be going home over mountainous swells and flattening gusts on the top of them as we enjoyed our ice cold beers – didn’t everyone?


Magoo has another look at his bottom, as do we all


The regatta’s iconic pic came out of the afternoon sailing with (Magoo) Dave McKay’s ‘Stockcar’ lying on it’s side in the middle of the fleet, keel 3 feet clear of the water. This little episode of course goes onto his well known list of achievements like winning the world moth championships back before most of the fleet were born – (something he is still trading on). Seriously though he is a good sailor, a past champ and Australian Sailor of the Year – but what were you thinking Magoo – masts should point up !

In Cronulla Sailing Club you know the beers are cold and the BBQ hot, it’s the club tradition and it’s a perfect place to be on the terrace after sailing watching the sun go down over Gunnamatta Bay. You’re all yachties – you know what I mean !

Sunday and the forecast is for light – medium SE to E breeze making for glam sailing out into the Tasman Sea off the main surf beach. Three races again in sunshine, swell and perfect racing. If you missed this you need to get thinking about your entry in the nationals, this is stunning stuff.

Convicts is on fire and takes out race four from Innamincka, Kaotic and Stephen Wright in ‘Renaissance’, the first of the local boats to get into the top 4 placings. ‘Renaissance’ is the old ‘Excite Your Senses’ from Sandringham and proves like Ron Thomson in ‘Kicking’ that an older Jarkan sailed well can be very competitive.

Race two and the left out to sea pays big time, ‘Jet’ banged the corner and lead around the course to finish first from Convicts, Sean Kirkjian in ‘Sailpac’ (not having a good regatta) and Kaotic. Local skipper Barry Ryan in ‘Pinot’ who is one of the top local boats pushed the top pack all the way round.

Race three and surprise, surprise Sean Kirkjian in Sailpac (School crew) is at the front from Steve (Wiley Young Dog) Girdis in ‘Convicts’, Kaotic and Magoo in ‘Stockcar’ – finally showing some form !

The fleet had some interesting stats, there was the Thomo Cup (unofficial of course, between brother Ron (Kicking – 7th) and sister Jeanette (Wildfire – 12th). Father Dave McKay (Stockcar – 8th) from daughter Julie (MacKay Marine – 11th). Alejo Morales came the furthest from South America sailing Bandit for the Pacific Sailing School, Marc van Dinther sailing with his Ausea sailing school crew.

The assembled and tired but now lubricating mass of humanity we call J sailors, is finally addressed by the Rear Commodore of the club, otherwise known as ‘Bucko’, and standing on a chair with a voice to slay the noisy Macquart at 30 paces and an irreverence that makes even the most informal in the crowd blanch, starts dishing out the silverware with appropriate stories.

While I still don’t understand the results, Jet is awarded 3rd on handicap, Magoo 2nd and Ron Thomson 1st.

Steve Girdis in Convicts Revenge on 7 points is the 2016 NSW State Champ, Shane Guanaria in Kaotic 2nd and NSW Class President John Crawford in Innamincka 3rd. The first visitor was us in Jet in 4th place – well you have to have a Mexican in the mix don’t you.

Full results are in a separate post below.

‘Hoody’ is Clinton Hood sailing Vertigo, one of the Shire’s gentlemen, and organised much of the sponsors products. Local sailor Barry Ryan became a happy chappie after winning the draw for a reverse cycle aircon unit – well done Hoody and your wonderful sponsors. Thanks to all of our sponsors, Quantum, Sailor Sunscreen, Wet-tech, Aussea Sailing School, Afloat Magazine, Spot-A-Yacht Photography, Cronulla Marina and Pure Aerials.

Fiona Campbell, one of the driving dynamos in the Cronulla class and club and sailing with Hoody on Vertigo, won the well deserved NSW Woman on Water trophy. On behalf of the National Association we wish to thank Cronulla SC and all the volunteers and sponsors that made the regatta a huge success.

A special mention must be made of Mick Reynolds who as a long time driving force of the class at Cronulla has seen it grow from a handful of club handicap boats to a twenty boat class fleet that is now the centre of NSW J24 racing. Congrats to you Mick and to all the people you have inspired (and probably annoyed) along the way to build this fleet with you.

Roll on the Nationals at Cronulla – January 4th to 7th 2017 !