CHAMPION MASTER: Never out of the top four, Mark Kennedy celebrates his Grand Masters division win in this week's Laser class Oceania and Australian Masters Championship.
CHAMPION MASTER: Never out of the top four, Mark Kennedy celebrates his Grand Masters division win in this week's Laser class Oceania and Australian Masters Championship. Beau Outteridge

Kennedy grandest master in Laser national championship

KAWANA'S Mark Kennedy has done himself and his home club, Maroochy Sailing Club, proud by taking out the Grand Master title in this week's Laser class Oceania and Australian Masters Championship.

Never out of the top four, Kennedy shook off Olympian Owen McMahon to achieve four firsts in the 10-race series, including the final race of the regatta.

He came into the competitive event not completely fit due to his recovery time from an eye operation late last year.

Then a back strain in the preceding week had Kennedy, 57, talking down his chances of winning on home waters.

"There was a heap of sailors there I didn't know and I went in so underdone,” Kennedy said. "Then after the first day and finishing with two fourths, I thought, 'Actually, I could do this'. As the regatta went on, it got better for me and those two fourths ended up being my two drops.”

Over the first three days of the four-day regatta at Mooloolaba, Kennedy said there was a confused sea-state.

"Training out there on my own, I got used to conditions and knew how to set up for that and how to move the boat around the waves,” Kennedy said. "A lot of the guys hadn't sailed in that before.”

But, beyond his understanding of the sea conditions, smart and aggressive racing delivered a delighted Kennedy honours in front of his peers and home supporters.

In offshore news, multiple race and division winner Bob Robertson announced this week he is returning again to being a "yachtie”. He has sold his powerboat and invested in the newest generation of yachts, an "ultra-fast” Bavaria C45 Ambition.

"It was a body-over-brain decision while I was in Dusseldorf,” Robertson said.

The clean-lines monohull design was only completed in the past eight or so months.

It is promoted as "fun meets safety”.

"It can be sailed by two people,” Robertson said. "Everything leads back to the helm.”

Robertson will campaign his yacht in the Hamilton Island and Magnetic Island race weeks, and possibly at Airlie Beach if the schedule permits.

The yacht is being shipped to Brisbane, then sailed south to the Sydney Boat Show before heading to Mooloolaba where it will be christened.

As to the new yacht's name, Robertson, who regularly entertains the sailing community with his interesting choices, is staying coy, claiming he hasn't decided as yet.



Motorbike rider critical after Coffs smash

Premium Content Motorbike rider critical after Coffs smash

A Urunga man remains in a critical condition after a motorcycle crash near Coffs...

LOCAL NEWS MATTERS: $1 a week for first 12 weeks

Premium Content LOCAL NEWS MATTERS: $1 a week for first 12 weeks

Deal gives you access to local, regional and metro News sites

Premier left ‘heartened’ by our local heroes

Premium Content Premier left ‘heartened’ by our local heroes

Coffs Coast locals have been awarded by the Premier for their selfless dedication...