December 2017 saw the commencement of five regattas and 10,000 kms of driving, over a seven week period, in three different States, for the Nacra 15 class. These five regattas included the Nacra 15 NSW titles in Port Kembla, Sail Melbourne, Sail Sydney, the Nacra 15 Australian Nationals Humpy Bong Yacht Club and the Nacra 15 Youth Olympic Qualifier and Australian Youth Nationals at RQYS.
Resulting in four, hard fought podium finishes.
2nd NSW Nacra 15 Championships, December 2107
1st Sail Sydney, Nacra 15, December 2017
Tied 1st, 2nd on count back Australian Nacra 15 Nationals, January 2018
3rd Australian Youth Nationals, January 2018
(No racing at Sail Melbourne due to inclement weather)
Ash also competed in late January, 2018 in the F16 Catamaran Nationals at Rye Yacht Club, in Victoria. This is an open Regatta, for all ages. Ash again as skipper, with Joe as crew and they placed 5th
These results were the culmination of commitment involving eight months of dedicated training, working as a team in a two handed boat, with Ash as Skipper and George as crew, Joe as Coach. This team was tested in a range of conditions during these regattas and their skill and dedication was proven with the great results.
Ash is a participant in QST (Queensland Sailing Team), and has now been accepted into the QAS (Queensland Academy of Sport) due to her recent achievements.
Ash contested the Singaporean Youth Nationals, 14-17th March, with Jai Tooley, (from Cairns) and tied for 1st, and awarded 2nd place on a count back.
Ashleigh and her new crew, Jed Fatches from Lake Macquarie, travelled to Medemblik, in the Netherlands for the United 4 Regatta, where they tied first and were awarded second on a count back. This regatta was a great experience competing in very cold conditions, with a world standard fleet.
Next stop for Ash and Jed, was the Nacra 15 Open Worlds in Barcelona, Spain. This regatta was represented by 18 countries with 60 boats competing, with five teams from Australia. Seeing and competing against 60 Nacra 15’s on a start line, was certainly challenging and an awesome sight.
Ash and Jed sailed exceptionally well, in a variety of wind and sea conditions, to finish the regatta in 6th position overall and first Australian boat.
Ash is now waiting, to see if she has qualified for the Youth Olympic Games, in Argentina, October, 2018.
The Swadling family, would also like to thank TMC for allowing her the time off school.
Ash would also like to thank her Teachers for their effort in helping her to catch up with her studies.