EIGHT West Australians are preparing to take on Australia’s best radio sailors.
The octet is competing in the Australian Radio Yachting Association (ARYA) National Championships on the Gold Coast from February 4 to 16.
Wembley Downs resident Denton Roberts is competing in the international A class event alongside two fellow Perth Radio Sailing Club members.
He said radio controlled sailing followed the same rules as sailing except sailors remained on land, with tactics and reading water conditions important for success.
“You’re not on board so it is harder to judge,” he said.
Roberts is also one of four Perth sailors in the ten rater event, while seven Sandgropers will compete in a field of 72 sailors including those from Scotland, New Zealand and the US for the international one-metre title.
Local competitors are from the Perth club, Champion Lakes and Harrington Waters based in Waikiki.
He said West Australians had experienced great success at the annual competition and though titles were for individual sailors, there was great camaraderie among “team WA”.
Despite the opportunity for competition, Roberts said it was this social aspect he enjoyed most about radio sailing.
The Perth club’s home base is Jackadder Lake in Woodlands and members meet three times a week.
“It’s a bit like a men’s shed…though women are definitely welcome,” he said.
“There’s some wonderful women in full size sailing at the moment.
“It’s about expanding your horizons (and) it’s good for the brain.”
To find out more, visit www.perthradiosailing.com.au.