Fish meet and greet, sailing and social events
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Discover Sailing Day
February 2017
Hobsons Bay photo by Hans Schepers

This month we've certainly seen a lot of activity around the club, with learn to sail graduates participating in the transition to sailing program, family day, try a boat for secondary school students, and more recently the social event for fishing members. 

Well done to Brian, Gayle and the Sailing Committee for the ongoing development over the past two years of the transition to sailing program. It was great to see so many recent graduates participating in racing this past weekend. The variation in weather certainly made it very interesting and challenging day for all.

Additionally James and Tony should also be recognised and congratulated for their efforts in coordinating events for our fishing members. James has continuously been working behind the scenes over the past few year in organising interclub fishing completions and social activities. Its was fantastic to see so many fishing members at their recent BBQ.

With only nine racing weekend to go, let's hope that the weather holds out for us over the next few months.

Simon van den Berg | Commodore
boats on the deck

Top of the Bay - in the Doldrums

One year on from our win at the Top of The Bay interclub Challenge at Altona, this year’s event was hosted by Elwood Sailing Club. 11 enthusiastic skippers assembled from our Club to sail across, including 4 trailables and 2 club boats, giving us the required minimum 10 participants to have a chance to win back to back.

This year’s competition drew all classes of boats from the participating clubs of Elwood Sailing Club, Albert Park Yacht Club, Albert Sailing Club, Altona Yacht Club, Port Melbourne Yacht Club, Williamstown Sailing Club and Port Melbourne Yacht Club.

It was a beautiful sunny day but the northerly winds were light, causing some concern about sailing across to the race course in time for the 2pm start. As it turned out, the sail to the start line was pleasant without the need to tow. The forecast was for fresh winds arriving in time for the race start. However, the northerly dropped as the race began, leaving many boats stranded on or before the start line. The race became a game of attrition, seeing who could find that zephyr to give them a jump over the luckless and windless fleet. Whilst some managed 1 lap, time passed slowly and finally the race was abandoned at 4.30pm.

Fortunately, we had the ever reliable race rescue crew on hand to tow stranded boats home. For some who managed to sail home, the wind suddenly became a blustery northerly giving quite a ride home.

We look forward to next year’s challenge and a chance to race against the other clubs.

Doldrums: The ‘doldrums’ is a colloquial expression derived from historical maritime usage, which refers to those parts of the Atlantic Ocean and the Pacific Ocean affected by the Intertropical Convergence Zone, a low-pressure area around the equator where the prevailing winds are calm.

Brian Fentiman, Vice Commodore

sailing boats

Sailing news

Club racing - catch up on lost days

The Calendar (sailing program) has been amended to reflect the changes and is posted on the website.


A race management support roster has been developed by the Sailing Committee. Sailors will be rostered on as backup to assist the race management team (Officer of the Day, duty crew, start boat), course boat or rescue boats as crew. Sailors should bring their sailing gear in the event they are not required. The roster has been posted on the notice board at the club.

view from upstairs

Social news

Friday 3 March - Friday Night Music and food

Our next Friday night food and music night will be on Friday 3rd March. The live music will  be provided by a local duo, Jen Hawley and friend, and the food for the night will be Vietnamese – Binh Mi chicken, pork or tofu rolls.  So come on down and enjoy the last of the warm weather before autumn really kicks in. Food and music from 6.30. New kitchen helpers would be appreciated on the night to keep the food flowing.

Save the date Sunday 19 March - breakfast at the club

On Sunday 19 March we will have another Breakfast at the Club, from 9am till 11am. So come down for bacon and egg rolls, fruit salad etc. We are trying to get a coffee cart to come and serve REAL coffee - watch this space. Helpers will be needed on the day. 

Save the date Sunday 26 March - Social boat trip up the Maribyrnong

We have a social boat trip planned for Sunday 26 March to explore up the Maribyrnong River. We are looking for members who have boats with motors who can take some passengers, and also those members who would like to join in and don’t have access to a boat with a motor. There is a notice on the noticeboard near the canteen to indicate your interest, whether you have spaces on a boat, or for those looking for a boat ride to join in.  We will co-ordinate places for people - make sure your phone number is on the form.  The plan is for the flotilla of boats to leave the club by 10.30am, so you need to be there by 10am to get organised. BYO picnic lunch and drinks – we are most likely to stop at Poyntons Landing, where there are picnic tables, some BBQs and playgrounds. We would expect to return to the club between 3 and 4pm. 

To keep up to date with our social activities, visit

Wrap up - family day

Despite some cool and overcast weather, the Family Day on Sunday 12 February had a good turnout of about 60 members and friends. Lots of activity on the water with access to kayaks, Optis, Pacers and some borrowed boats from the Sea Scouts provided a variety of choice for the participants to get out on the water. Thanks to Jarrod, Hayden and Alice for helping with the Tackers boats, and the various parents who all supported and helped supervise the water based activities. The Angelicats, one of our regular local music acts, helped entertain the crowd, and the BBQ team were kept busy feeding the hungry mouths. The kids managed to keep themselves entertained on table tennis and foozball when the weather restricted boating activities. All in all, it was very rewarding to see the club being used by so many on a Sunday in a family friendly atmosphere.

Wrap up - Friday night spaghetti night

It was a busy night in the kitchen on Friday 3 February for the first live music and food night for the year. Great effort by Rob and Paula to cook and prepare the tasty pasta sauces, and they were ably supported by Catherine managing the orders. Thanks to all others who helped throughout the evening. Great live music was provided by Melissa Goetz and her support guitarist. It is very positive to see the club being used by lots of different members and their friends, and making the most of a lovely summer evening.

we need your help

Office help needed

We are seeking the assistance from any members who can assist in the office on Saturday mornings. The role would be to assist the treasurer and acting secretary with general enquiries, welcome guests and tours of the facilities. Having another person in the office each Saturday between 10-11:30am means the club can welcome potential members and better service existing members.

Anyone interested in either role can contact the Commodore on

fishermen holding fish

Fish meet and greet

The fish meet and greet held at the clubrooms on Sunday 19 February was a great success, with around 60 members, family and friends attending. Catering was stretched to the limit, as only 40 people were expected to attend, however a quick raid of the downstairs freezer for more snags solved the problem.

The guest speaker from Fisheries Victoria, Dallas de Silva, was very informative and answered many questions. He provided free fishing paraphernalia, which was appreciated by all.

As this was the first social event for fishing members in a long while, positive feedback was encouraging.

I’d like to thank the many people who helped with this event, especially Leigh Farrell, Jude Blackwood, Hans Schepers and Sue Fraser, as well as the many members who helped with setting up and cleaning up.

James D'Aquino

Yachts at Waranga Basin

Peter Behrendt & Peter Yeats at Waranga Basin - image Hans Schepers

Waranga Basin

On the weekend of the 28-29 January,10 Hartley 16s and 7 Explorers 16s took part in their respective state championships at the Waranga Boat Club on the waters of Waranga Basin near Rushworth.

With the forecast predicting  hot weather and light winds for the weekend it looked like there was going to be some hard and very close racing, which is exactly what happened. With light and very tricky wind, boat positions of the two fleets were constantly changing. The last race on Sunday was abandoned due to a lack of wind.

The Hartley club boat results:

  • 3rd Hissing Sid - Peter Behrendt & Peter Yeats
  • 4th Sea Biscuit - Allan O'Brian & Bryan Langworthy
  • 5th Ravin - Brian McMahon & Helen McMahon
  • 6th Whispering - Greg Parsons & Hayden Parsons
  • 7th Phantom - Trevor Burke & Detlef Becker 

Explorer - club results:

  • 2nd Swallow - Sue Burke & Jude Blackwood 
  • 1st on handicap Edna May - Michael lambiris & Jonathan Gwinnett

Peter Behrendt


TACKERS April school holiday programs

We are looking at possibly running some TACKERS 1 & 2 programs the first week of the school holidays, 3-7 April.

If you are interested in your children being involved please email

If the program proceeds, information and enrolment forms will be available on the website after the first weekend of March.

Lois Hunt

sailing boats

A successful ‘try out a boat for high-school-aged members’

On 11 February we had an opportunity for high-school aged club members to come down and try out a selection of boats. About 8 young people came down and tried out a Mirror, 2 X3s (kindly lent to us by the Scouts) and a Sabre (unfortunately it was too windy to get the Laser on the water).  During Family Day the following day there was also an Open Bic available to try.

With the Transition to Racing course and TACKERS Fleet also going on there was a real buzz around the club with so many boats out on the water. The young people involved really enjoyed the opportunity to try boats that they haven’t sailed before, with the X3s in particular being popular. Conversations on the deck started the reflection process as to what we are looking for in a ‘youth class’, as well as progression possibilities from the Optis and there was enthusiasm for further conversations and youth events.

Big thanks must be extended to club members who lent their boats for the event and also Jarred who made sure that we had safety boat cover for the morning.

Ruth Morton

sailing boats

Transition to racing program

Our Transition to Racing program was a great success this year with most of the club boats being put to good use over several weekends in mild wind and weather. Our participants enthusiastically practised their tacks, gybes and capsizing techniques. 

The final day saw two ‘green fleet’ boats attempt the afternoon race under the watchful eye of a rescue boat. Both Pacers managed to start the race in good form, which is an achievement in itself. Halfway around the first leg the wind picked up, suddenly closer to 20 knots, and the race was on in unexpected ways. As their rescue boat suddenly became busy with several others capsizing, our Green Fleet was separated. When Chris and Tim capsized they initially felt forgotten but not for long, as another rescue boat was on the way. In the end they righted the boat successfully on their own - a great effort in such conditions. Sarah and Shaun also sailed well in the conditions, although Sarah felt she was busy surviving rather than sailing at times.

After the race, and safely on shore, everyone talked excitedly about the great fun they had whilst now acutely aware of how the weather conditions can change without warning.

Gayle Gardner

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