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Patton makes steady start to Etchell Champs

Tim Patton led the local contingent after completion of the opening two races of the Etchells World Championships 2012 currently underway in Sydney, Australia.

The 58-year-old skipper was situated in 40th in the 74-boat fleet at the end of yesterday’s races after posting steady finishes of 41st and 44th respectively.

Patton is competing this year with crew Roly Lenox-King and Andrew Cooper who hail from New Zealand and Britain.

The Bermuda Sailing Association (BSA) president’s best showing to date at the Etchells World Championships arrived in 1988 in Perth, Australia where he placed fourth.

Four places further adrift of Patton is Royal Bermuda Yacht Club (RBYC) sailor and Argo Group CEO Mark Watson.

Watson started the nine-race series on a promising note with an impressive 24th place finish. But a disappointing 66th finish in the day’s second race saw the Newport Bermuda Race veteran slip down the leader board.

Aussie Graeme Taylor led the Etchells fleet after two races and was closely shadowed by compatriot Tom King and American Vincent Brun who rounded off the top three.

Last year’s Etchells World Championships winner Bill Hardesty is not back to defend his crown this year.

There are 73 skippers competing at this year’s championships that are being hosted by Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron as part of its Sesquincentenary celebrations.

Also competing in Syndey is legendary Aussie sailor John Bertrand, who led Australia II to victory in the 1983 Americas Cup to put an end to 132 years of American dominance in the ultimate match racing spectacle.

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Published February 21, 2012 at 1:00 am (Updated February 21, 2012 at 8:14 am)

Patton makes steady start to Etchell Champs

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