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Rockal Evans makes successful debut as tactician in Australia

Rockal Evans came through tough baptism as tactician (Photograph by Martina Orsini/SSL Gold Cup)

Rockal Evans has plenty to celebrate after successfully completing a trial as tactician in the MC38 Series in Australia.

The Bermudian sailor impressed when calling tactics onboard Christian Beck’s 38-foot yacht, Infotrack, but was edged out of the title on a tie-break by Leslie Green’s yacht, Ginger, after the teams remained deadlocked at the end of the three- race series last weekend.

Evans passed the trial with flying colours and will now continue serving in the paid position moving forward.

“Initially I got approached to be a trimmer for the first event of the season and then the last race of Act I I was thrown in as the tactician,” he told The Royal Gazette.

“We won the race and he was way impressed by how I was as tactician, so then he approached me after that event to be the tactician moving forward.

“Sunday was my trial race day and he was highly happy with me being the tactician moving forward for the next events, and that also puts me as being a paid professional. The owner of the boat and crew were really impressed, so that's now going to be my role on the MC38.”

Evans, who competed alongside compatriot Mustafa Ingham on Beck’s racing yacht, capitalised on his vast knowledge of conditions on the racecourse, which helped his team post a 1-2-3 record in light and shifty breezes.

“The race area was out by Sydney Head so it was a racecourse that I am familiar with,” he added.

“I knew the area pretty good so it was pretty straightforward calling tactics such as where I wanted the boat to be on the start line, positioning the side of the racecourse I want to be on, where the next wind shift is going to come.

“It was kind of easy because I did a lot of training in that area leading up to my Olympic campaign in the Finn class.”

Evans had his work cut out pitting his skills against some of the world’s elite tacticians and proved equal to the task.

“One of the tacticians was Tom Spithill, Jimmy Spithill’s [two-times World and America’s Cup champion] younger brother, who is a really good local sailor here in Australia,” he said.

“Ben Lamb is another really good professional and competed for one of the teams (Softbank Team Japan) in the America’s Cup in Bermuda (2017). He is also a tactician in the TP52 class and sails on many other 100 footers.

“That was pretty intimidating but I have nothing to lose and just had to do what I know best.”

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Published April 17, 2024 at 10:40 am (Updated April 17, 2024 at 10:42 am)

Rockal Evans makes successful debut as tactician in Australia

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