Sydney Waterford Boat Club

Top Hat Sailing

About the top hat sailing division

This division focuses on inshore non-spinnaker races. The focus is on having fun while also competing in a lively environment.  The division is all about the fun you can have as a boat owner, and if you are someone who is interested in the social side and racing part of sailing, you can join this division to have an amazing time. There are racing and sailing events for all classes of yachts, which means no matter how big or small your yacht is, you will have people to compete with and the competition us all fun and great. There are also skill levels categories, and whether you are a novice sailor or an expert, you can enter a similar category to compete with those within your skill level.

The races in this division are usually held on the first Saturday of the month, and the first fleet starts at 1240 while the second fleet starts at 1310. There are time limits on the race, and the standard ones are 3hrs 30 mins for the first fleet and 3hrs for the second fleet. However, there are races here the standard differs, and the racers will be informed of this before they even start the race. The handicapper will place new entrants in appropriate fleets, and the courses can be shortened at the mark of the course. All the boats participating in the race have their clocks set with GPS time before the start of the race, and they have to record the finish time themselves and report it to the handicapper at post-race presentation. They can also do it by SMS where they cannot raft up.

In a situation where the race is shortened by the committee, there will be a finish line by the first boat to finish at the mark, and this finish boat will position itself perpendicularly on the passing side of the mark that is indicated in the course list to be the distance of three boats of the same lengths. Also, the first boat to cross the finish line must stay at the finish line for30 minutes to take all the finish times of the other boats to the second and finishers after 30 minutes are considered to be late finishers and can take their own time. All the finish times are to be handed to the handicapper at the end of the event.

The Top Hat sailing division organises different races and other activities within the year. You can take part in all these activities by joining the division or choosing to just be a spectator at some of their events. Members of the division get the chance to improve their skills and become better sailors due to the constant competition, and the winning sailor will always have bragging rights.