OK Racing at Drummoyne
The OKs race at the Club on most Sundays throughout the summer season from September to April, with the exception of scheduled interclub events and a break at xmas, usually in conjunction with the Club’s Junior Division. Club races normally start at around 1.30pm, using the same course as the Cherubs and Lasers.
The Club welcomes visiting OK sailors to join in our activities. However, if one is considering sailing at the Club on a regular basis then they should take particular note and become familiar with the Club’s requirements as stated in the respective Club By-laws.
The OK Dinghy.
The OK Dinghy is one of those classic designs that has survived the test of time and remains to this day one of the most widespread international dinghies with a loyal worldwide following.This popular 4.0m long single-hander is sailed in over twenty countries across the world, with large fleets in Australia, New Zealand, Great Britain, Germany, Sweden, Denmark, Poland andIndia, with some growth in Asia and the occasional flourish in America and Canada.
The origins of the OK Dinghy date back to a design commissioned from Knud Olsen ofDenmark in 1957, with the class name adopted from the reverse initials of it’s designer. Over the years it has adapted successfully to the changing technologies in construction and rig materials. It carries a mainsail of 8 square metres, set off a rotating un-stayed mast (same concept as the Olympic Finn, just a bit smaller and more manageable), with a bare hull weight of 72kgs. The versatility of the design and rig allow for a broad range of body weights and body shapes to compete successfully at the highest level, with optimal crew weight in the range 70 to 110kgs.
As single-handed dinghies go the OK has much to offer – relatively inexpensive to campaign, simple to rig and maintain, durable and seaworthy, yet demanding enough to test the skills of any accomplished sailor. Like many classes it has it’s own particular idiosyncrasies, but these tend to enhance the character and spirit of those who race them, and the camaraderie at any major regatta is always self evident, whether it be at state, national or world championship level.
The class was established in Australia in 1961, with the first Australian Championship sailed atMelbourne in 1962-63. The class is currently sailed in Melbourne, country Victoria, Adelaide, Hobart and in NSW, where they sail from Drummoyne S.C., Sydney Amateur S.C. (formerly Mosman Amateur S.C.) and Wangi Amateur S.C. on the western shore of Lake Macquarie, as well as traveling to compete at various venues throughout the state and interstate.
The World Championship for the class is raced annually, usually 3 consecutive years in the Northern Hemisphere and ever fourth year in the Southern Hemisphere where New Zealand and Australia share the honour by rotation once every 8 years. The 2002 worlds were held in Napier New Zealand; 2003 in Goa India; 2004 at Parkstone UK; 2005 at Skaelskor Denmark; 2006 at Belmont Australia; 2007 at the Baltic seaside resort of Leba in Poland; 2008 at Warnemunde Germany; 2009 at Kalmar Sweden; 2010 at Wellington New Zealand; for 2011 at Largs in Scotland; for 2012 the 50th OK World C’ship will be sailed in Denmark.
Further class information can be obtained via the respective websites, namely:
BACKGROUND TO THE OK AT DRUMMOYNE
The OK was introduced to Drummoyne in 1986 through the efforts of Peter Horne, with a great deal of support from the likes of Len Nordstrom, Mick McQueen, Bob Stuart, Bev James and Bill Daley – all former skiff sailors looking for a challenging boat to compliment their sailing talent without the expense, commitment and the hassle of chasing up regular crew. (It is interesting to note that during this period the 16-foot skiff class, the foundation class of Drummoyne S.C., adopted a new class rule to allow a minimum of 3 crew hands instead of the previous 4, which then placed more emphasis on the need for more agile and skilled crew to race a 16 effectively and consequently left many class stalwarts to consider the alternatives).
The OK soon found a niche within the Drummoyne sailing scene, and over the years the class has enjoyed great success at the Club. In return the OK Dinghy has introduced to the Club and it’s sailing members, a new standard of racing, boat handling disciplines and expertise that comes with competing in an international class, not to mention having some good old fashioned fun in the process.
The Club has conducted several State championships and two National championships (1991 and 1994) for OK Dinghies. While class numbers at the Club have fluctuated over the years (not un-common for many classes), the OK Dinghy is still an important part of the sailing activities at the Club.
RECENT SUMMARY OF OKS AT DRUMMOYNE, 1986-2012
Bob Chapman has begun compiling a history of OK Sailing at Drummoyne which can be downloaded using this link.
Comments and contributions are welcomed and Bob can be emailed using this link.