KI Sport – Sailing – Epic journey for State titles

Kangaroo Island Community Education has been invited by Yachting SA to compete in the national school team sailing titles in Hobart after its three teams made a good showing at the recent state titles in Port Lincoln.

Eighteen students on two buses made the long trek to Port Lincoln in the second week of the school holidays, arriving at 10.30pm on the Tuesday night to stay at the Lions Hostel at North Shields.

On Wednesday the students practised on Boston Bay in warm conditions before the competition started on Thursday with a field of 22 teams from country and metropolitan schools.

There were high hopes for KI’s number one team, the Hurricanes, but in its first race on Thursday a series of unfortunate events and errors led to an unlucky loss. The Hurricanes made up for that for the rest of the day with excellent wins, finishing the day at eighth position overall, followed by the KI Tornados in 12th and the third team KI Lightning in 11th, after a great win against Walford to end the day.

Lightning’s Rhana Berlin had been sidelined with illness the first day, so Lightning became a composite team, inviting sailors from St Joseph’s College Port Lincoln and former KI student Oliver van der Linden (Immanuel College) to make up the numbers and also borrowing skipper Louise King from the Tornados and crew Alex Ripley-Dennis from the Hurricanes.

Hurricanes skipper and team captain Khalil Hadland had lost weight since the regional titles because of football training so his crew Bridget Black lugged 7.5kg of water (a quarter of her body weight) through the tournament to make up the minimum 110kg required in each boat.

In the “play of the day” on Thursday, skipper Jed Sheridan for KI Lightning set two traps for the opposition and helped to pull off a 1,2,3 win for his team.

On day two Friday, the KI teams had several opportunities to race against each other. When Hurricanes and Lightning raced each other late in the afternoon, the enthusiastic shouts of the racers on the start line proved the teams’ competitive spirit and could be heard from the beach.

Coach Tim Frears said the teams had been more evenly matched than he had predicted.

By the end of day two, KI Hurricanes had won 8 of 11 races, Tornados 6 of 11 and Lightning 5 of 11 to place them seventh, 10th and 13th overall.

Unfortunately, Saturday’s racing was cancelled because of northerly winds gusting to 28 knots.

“It’s disappointing we couldn’t get a chance to improve our position on the final day of racing,” Mr Frears said.

KI Hurricanes finished equal fourth on race wins but seventh on a points countback.

KI was the fourth-finishing school behind three St Joseph’s College teams, two Immanuel College teams and one from St Michael’s College.

The three Immanuel teams included a number of former Kangaroo Island sailors – Josh Thomas, Rory, Oliver and Jacob van der Linden and Brandt Steyn.

Supporting the students on the trip were Mr Frears, manager Jay Peters; drivers Russell Colman and Anna Hadland; support staff Sophie Sheridan, Sharon Tucker and Marie Rice; and travelling separately parents Gordon and Shauna Black, Peter Lovering, Toni and Steve Kempster, Sandra and Wayne Faint.

The buses and three private vehicles left Port Lincoln before dawn on Sunday to travel back in convoy to Kangaroo Island for the first day of term two the next day.

Mr Frears thanked Sealink for its support with travel and KICE for paying nomination fees and supplying buses. He also thanked the Kangaroo Island Yacht Club for its $1000 donation towards the trip, which had allowed costs to be kept down for participating students.

“Team sailing is a great collaboration between the school and the KI Yacht Club, which supplies boats for the students to train in and the members provide lots of support in other ways,” he said.

Prints of KI Sport photos can be ordered online at Photo Sales.

Team sailors, from left, Bridget Black, Darcy Rice, Samuel Snowball, Sam Kempster, Lucy Kempster, Rhana Berlin, Louise King, Grace Sheridan, Darcy Nolan, Tait Lovering, Luke Faint, Eliza Sheridan, Kate Faint, Frank Colman, Skye Wickham, Jed Sheridan, Khalil Hadland, Alex Ripley-Dennis, coach Tim Frears, manager Jay Peters. Photos by Shauna Black

Team sailors from Immanuel College made a presentation to the Kangaroo Island coach Tim Frears in recognition of the coaching they received when they were at school on Kangaroo Island. From left, Oliver, Jacob and Rory van der Linden, Tim Frears, Josh Thomas, Brandt Steyn.Photos by Shauna Black

KI Sport – Sailing. Photos by Shauna Black

KI Sport – Sailing. Photos by Shauna Black

KI Sport – Sailing. Photos by Shauna Black

KI Tornados ready for action, from front, Louise King and Darcy Nolan, Eliza Sheridan and Grace Sheridan, Luke Faint and Darcy Rice. Photos by Shauna Black

Lucy Kempster and Alex Ripley-Dennis on the picturesque Boston Bay. Photos by Shauna Black

Coach Tim Frears talks tactics with Louise King. Photos by Shauna Black

KI Sport – Sailing. Photos by Shauna Black

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