RFBYC’s Dragon Fleet Captain is:  Kevin Palassis

The Western Australian Dragon fleet prides itself on being the friendliest and most inclusive classes at Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club.

We enthusiastically welcome new sailors  to the joys of Dragon sailing and have a number of initiatives to bring new people to the class through free coaching on Saturday mornings and a women’s helm regatta held at the beginning of the season.

You don’t need to own a Dragon to get involved.  Dragon teams at RFBYC are always on the lookout for good enthusiastic crew and will be happy to find sailing opportunities to suit your availability and skills (and all skill levels are welcome so even if you are relatively new to sailing please get in touch – you will be made very welcome).

If you are thinking about buying a Dragon and would like to test sail a boat or need advice on where to sail, which boat to purchase or any other aspect of Dragon sailing again the WAIDA members will be delighted to help set up some test sailing and share their experience and expertise with you.

Dragons have a rich history. They were designed in 1929, were the Olympic class between 1958-1972 and made their debut at RFBYC with the introduction of the first boat “Leander” by Ernie Tomlinson in 1950.

Their longevity can be attributed to the close competition, the ease of handling (only 3-4 crew needed) and, as you become more competitive, their highly technical nature.

There are 24 Dragons registered with the Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club (RFBYC).

The major Western Australian Dragon Championships comprise the RFBYC Club Championship which is a seven race series held over the Clubs summer racing calendar from October to April and the WA State Championships, generally six or seven races series held in February/March.

For further information, see also the WA International Dragon Class Association https://www.dragonclass.org.au/western-australia

The Ahern family via Geoff Totterdell gifted sixteen minutes of footage originally shot on the “home movie” technology of the 8mm camera.
The footage shows some Freshwater Bay on-water activity, some of the Club’s lawn area and mostly yachts racing on
Cockburn Sound in the December-January regatta.

Dragon Update – July 22 – David Meager

Winter activities underway

  • Winter Frostbites. A fleet of 5 to 6 Dragons are making an impact competing in the B fleet. It was great to see Simon Prosser & his crew back out on Linnea. After 3 races Dragons are 1, 2 & 3 (Indulgence – Kevin Palassis, Saphira – Ian Malley and French Connection – Emma Shand with Ray). Thanks to Trish Ford for getting the fleet out.
  • Thursday Mid Week – Autumn Winter Series 3:10pm start. A great opportunity to hone your sailing skills and crew work prior to the Summer Season. Trish Ford and Sandy Anderson are there most Thursdays.
  • Our best wishes to Sandy Anderson and crew Caroline Gibson who are off to Tasmania to compete in the Tasmanian State Championships at Hobart on 23-24 July sailing dragon Plum Crazy AUS185. May the “wind gods be with you”.
  • Safe travels to Rob Campbell & Penny Anderson (PennyFarthing) who when not competing in Dragon events in Europe and the UK are cruising somewhere in the Aegean. We wish Rob a good recovery from his recent treatments and seeing them back in Perth later on this year.

Activities Coming Up & Planned

  • Wednesday evening talks (interactive) starting at 6:00pm at the Club on Sailing Faster & Better; Tactics & Equipment and Rules for Windward Leeward Racing. Willy Packer has kindly offered to kick it off and will be sharing his sailing experiences on how to improve your position in the fleet. An invitation notice will be out next week.
  • Sunday Frostbites Races 4, 5, 6 & 7 to be held on 17 July 2:00pm , 7 August 2:00pm, 21 Aug 2:00pm and 18 September 10:00am.
  • Thursday Mid Week Autumn-Winter Series continues with a start at 3:10pm.
  • Women’s Helm Regatta (Saracen Plate Trophy) and Opening Season Social on the first Sunday in October (2nd Oct). Contact Sandy Anderson or Ray Chatfield if interested.

The Western Australian International Dragon Association (WAIDA) 2022/23 Committee met in early July. We are busy preparing for the coming season and other activities with IDA.

Items include:

  • Special welcome to new Committee members Robyn Johnston and Susan Parker. Continuing members are Kevin Palassis (Fleet Captain), Gerry McGann (Secretary), John Anderson (Treasurer), Ray Chatfield, Jack Lynn, Ian Malley (Measurer & Technical), Willy Packer, Rod Williams and David Meager (President).
  • Confirmation has been sent to AIDA for holding the Prince Philip Cup at RFBYC during Q1 in 2025.
  • Issue of EOI to AIDA for consideration hosting the IDA Worlds in Australia in 2029.
  • A Review of Fleet Activities On and Off the Water to support our new entrants, improve our sailing and our socialisation activities.
  • Initial stages developing a strategic plan to ensure the Fleet maintains its prominence at the Club and continues on for next decade.
  • Planning for on-water coaching sessions during the season with short courses mid-November and late-January prior to the State Championships 24 to 26 February.
  • Revisiting participation in Geographe Bay Race Week 4-10 February 2023.