A team of Esperance sailors have returned home with a second place finish in their division at the Hamilton Island Race Week in Queensland, despite their vessel being damaged by Cyclone Debbie earlier in the year.
The Anger Management team, led by skipper Tim Stewart, claimed silver out of the 16 boats in Cruising Division 3, missing out on top honours by just two points.
Priscilla Davies, Russell Bridge, Mark Quinlivan, Dylan Pinchin, Collin Maloney, Stuart McIntyre, Simon Staines, Jim Bridge, Scherie Fowler, Matt Elliot, Eve Cooper and Geoff Bishop rounded out the rest of the team.
Also the commodore for the Esperance Bay Yacht Club, with 30 years of sailing experience under under his belt, Mr Stewart said he was thrilled, and pleasantly surprised, with the result.
“It’s a pretty good regatta to do well in,” he said.
“Leading into the last race we were in second position, which we were more than happy to maintain.
“As it so happened we caught up a couple of points but we still finished two points shy of the lead, which all in all we’re certainly more than happy with.”
Mr Stewart said this was his first time sailing in an event of this scale, having previously competed in the Geograph Bay Race Week
“As much as Hamilton Island is a beautiful place to be it’s quite a difficult p[lace to sail with all the tides and the wind direction changes and all that sort of thing.
“We went over there with no expectations of actually achieving anything, our primary goal was to have some fun, do the race week.
“The race result really wasn’t something that we thought we might even be able to win, I don’t think we ever thought that far ahead.”
The preparation for the regatta was made all the more stressful thanks to Cyclone Debbie, which struck Queensland in April.
He said it was an eye opener when he saw the extent of the damage, but nonetheless managed to pull through in time for the race.