Derwent flooded by young sailors

THE International Optimist dinghy is the world's largest sailing dinghy for kids to learn and enjoy sailing and, in particular, start racing at an early age.  

Anyone looking out over Hobart's River Derwent yesterday would have seen a massive fleet of 189 of these tiny sailboats contesting the Optimist Australian championships.

And that included the passengers and crew of a cruise liner that sailed up the river in mid-afternoon, her master showing great care to avoid the Optimists and other dinghy classes racing on the Derwent.

It was a good day for Sandy Bay Sailing Club race officers as they managed to complete three more races for the open fleet, bringing the total to six.  

For the young sailors from throughout Australia, as well as from Great Britain, New Zealand and the US, it was a long day on the water with the results widely spread.

In the open fleet, some of the overseas visitors were sailing well, with Nick Egnot-Johnson from New Zealand's Murray Bay Yacht Club again winning two out of three races to lead the regatta.

Best placed Tasmanian was Sam King from the Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania, who won the third race for his fleet.

George Booth from Tamar Yacht Club is 32nd overall, Hugo Hamilton from Sandy Bay Sailing Club 33rd, Chloe Fisher from the Tamar Yacht Club 34th, while Hugo Hickling is 36th.

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