RSYS Operations FAQs


Today we would like to tell you about what you CAN still do at the Club, the Clubhouse services still running and the facilities that are at your disposal. Read on!


OPEN: The Dining Room and Main Bar for lunch and dinner (Monday-Friday)
OPEN: The CCA for breakfast and lunch (seven days)
     Note: Advance bookings are essential – ‘no walk-ins’
OPEN: the kitchen – for Chef's Dine at Home menu click here for details
OPEN: Conference and private dining rooms are available, with modified settings
CANCELLED: Club house accommodation bookings until at least 1 May 2020

Q: Can I just turn up for lunch?
A: Advance bookings are essential so that we can manage room settings.

Q: Can I bring a group?
A: Maximum six to table. Tables are spaced well apart.

Q: How can the Club assist Members?
Our storerooms are full and our chefs are cooking up a storm! We will shortly publish a
Dining Out Menu – a variety of Squadron classic meals for you to order and take-away.

Please address your queries to Reception 9955 7171


The Fort Denison Cellar

OPEN: for take-away purchases and wine deliveries within Sydney Metro
Please address your queries to 9017 0121

Social Activities & Functions

CANCELLED: Grand Buffets, wine tastings, Wine Dinners, Book Club, Cruising Division, Literary Lunches, Opera by the Harbour, VIVID cruise tours.
CANCELLED: Bridge games, Bridge lessons, Dinner & Duplicate Bridge, Stepping Stone House Bridge Day.

Q: I booked an event, will I get a refund?
We have not charged your House Account

Q: What about future Club events?
A: All Club functions are suspended until at least 1 May 2020.

Please address your queries to 9017 01156



Private Sailing

use the tender service to access your boat
bring your boat to the Pond
access water and fuel
use the Jib crane to launch your keelboat
engage the RSYS boatshed staff for repair and maintenance work
work on your own boat on the hardstand
order provisioning platters
enjoy coffee and meals in the CCA (booking required - see below)

Please address your Waterfront queries to 9017 0161

Q: Can I launch my own dinghy?
A: You are still able to access your boat and go sailing however at this point in time we cannot offer any form of on water safety support.  We also are not able to make the club RIBs available to parent Members to act as on water support.

If you are going to go sailing:

  • As always, look at the weather forecast for Sydney Closed waters before launching.
  • Check the current warnings for NSW.
  • Go with a friend, in pairs (ie two boats keeping together on the water rather than one boat sailing alone)
  • Carry some form of communication such as a mobile phone and know who you are going to contact if you do get into trouble.  The Club will not be in a position to handle any rescues.
  • Ensure someone knows what time you are leaving, and what time you are expected back.  The Club Sailing Office cannot assume this responsibility.
  • Be aware of other Members accessing the outer pond arm.  Please stack dollies on top of each other in a position that allows other users to safely navigate a path on the arm.
  • As always, be aware of other traffic on the Harbour (ferries, motorboats, yachts etc.)

 Sailing is a wonderful sport that builds independent thinkers but things can go wrong and parents need to appreciate the potential risks of sailors sailing alone, or even sailors heading out in groups on a busy commercial Harbour.  Trouble could be as simple as a boom disconnecting from a mast or something breaking on a boat making it difficult to sail, or could even be an accidental hit to the head with a boom.  Please consider all ‘What If’ scenarios before sailing, and in particular before sailing alone.

Q: Can I hire a SUP?
A: This is available to Members and can be booked online here.

Q: Can I hire an Elliott7?
A: Not at the present time.

Q: Can I hire a Club RIB?
A: Not at the present time.

Q: Can I hire a Club Laser?
A: Not at the present time.




PONANT Friday Twilight,

Sunday Twilight
All Saturday racing (Summer Series, Mini As, Mini Bs, Varuna Trophy race)
Stepping Stone House Regatta

DF65 Racing

All Youth Dinghy Racing and Training


Q: What does this mean for our race officials?   

A: Unfortunately this spells the end of the 2019/2020 sailing season. Thank you to our valued volunteers for their diligence and commitment throughout the sailing season.

Q: Will external events proceed?

A: RPEYC Wednesday afternoon racing is cancelled.
Please check with the host clubs:

SOPS racing on March 21 run by MHYC
The Manly Yacht Club Women’s Challenge
Combined Clubs Winter Series - to be advised.

Please address your queries to 9017 0152



CANCELLED: The Annual Squadron Cruise and monthly Cruising Division meetings.

Please address your queries to 9017 0152


The Sailing Academy

CANCELLED: Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday Youth Dinghy Sailing activities
All Tackers, Teens, LOTS and Open Keelboat learn to sail programs

Q: I booked a course, can I get a refund?
A: Of course, we will give you a credit towards a future course.  We will publish a new schedule of course dates and times as soon as practicable.  If you would prefer a refund or would like to discuss anything please contact our Sailing Academy Manager 9017 0154

Q: I’m hoping to join the Senior Keelboat Development Program
We hope to publish some details in the coming weeks however our start date is now delayed.  Please send an expression of interest to



Coronavirus Precautions – Suspended Activities & Closures

17.3.20 Letter from the Commodore

Dear Members,
Your General Committee and the Squadron’s Senior Management team have been monitoring on a continuous basis the growing implications of Coronavirus (COVID-19) in our wider community and on our Club’s many activities and operations.

We are being guided by relevant Health Authorities, expert health input, senior management recommendations, as well as Member feedback. Our CEO William Pettigrew is in active dialogue with his counterparts at various major clubs and peak bodies, locally, interstate and overseas, as well as the NSW Department of Health.

We continue to assess the risk in relation to all operations, activities and events at the Club, paying particular attention to threats of transmission and the heightened vulnerability of our demographic membership base. As a consequence of this risk assessment, Members are advised that the following actions are effective immediately:

  1. All organised sailing and training activity for the season has been cancelled. See below for details.
  2. The Dining Room and Main Bar will remain open for lunch and dinner with bookings and table sizes limited to ensure appropriate distances.
  3. The Careening Cove Anchorage (CCA) will open for breakfast and lunch only (seven days), at a reduced capacity to a maximum of 100. No tables or groups larger than 6. Members must book prior to arrival, no “walk-ins” will be admitted in any restaurant.
  4. Forthcoming Squadron events are postponed e.g. Wine tastings, Wine Dinner, Book Club, Cruising Division, Literary Lunch, Friday Twilight Presentation Dinner.
  5. All Bridge activity at the Club has been suspended until further notice. This suspension includes all regular weekly sessions, social play, John Roberts lessons and the Stepping Stone House Bridge Day.
  6. The Club will not be hosting large functions before 1 May.
  7. The Club has cancelled all Clubhouse room accommodation bookings up until 1 May.
  8. Conference rooms are available with revised attendance capacities.
  9. Until further notice, the tender service and the repair service will operate as usual.

The NSW Health Infectious Disease Department has reviewed these measures and agreed that they are appropriate, responsible and well-considered given the current state, though acknowledges that circumstances can change rapidly.

Ultimately, our concern is for the health and wellbeing of everyone associated with our Club and this is the basis for these decisions. Other Squadron activities, events and operations will continue to be assessed, and we will keep you informed of further changes as the situation evolves.

The CEO and his senior management team have already taken a number of initiatives across the Club, particularly in terms of heightened hygiene, cleaning and food preparation.

We ask all Members to continue to practise good hygiene to protect against infections and require that you not attend the club at all if:

        - you or anyone in your immediate family and work colleagues has COVID-19
        - you or anyone in your immediate family and work colleagues has been in contact with a known COVID-19 patient
        - you or anyone in your immediate family and work colleagues is in voluntary isolation, say as a recent overseas returnee
        - anyone has a cold or cold-like symptoms.

We are grateful to all Members, staff and experts for their guidance and co-operation. As COVID-19 continues to impact the lives of people everywhere, we seek your understanding and know that you share our concerns, given these trying times. We are a Club first and foremost - a Club having at our core the care of our Members, your guests, and our staff. 

We will share additional information as soon as it becomes available. Click on the links below for the latest information and updates about Club activities and the General Committee’s thinking and decisions.

Coronavirus Alert @ 17 March 2020
Club Operations FAQs @ 19 March 2020

We appreciate your patience as we make every effort to continue to assess the situation and communicate effectively and efficiently.

Warm regards,

David Ward



Sailing to be cancelled:

- Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday Youth Dinghy Sailing activities

- PONANT Friday Twilight

- All Saturday racing (Summer Series, Mini A's, Mini B's, Varuna Trophy race)

- Sunday Twilight

- Stepping Stone House Regatta

- RSYS Annual Cruise

- All RSYS Sailing Academy courses including: 

        * Sunday Tackers 1, 2 & 3

        * Sunday Keelboat Start Crewing, Start Helming, Start Skippering, Spinnakers

        * Wednesday LOTS Keelboat Start Crewing, Start Helming, Start Skippering, Spinnakers.


A decision on the Combined Clubs Winter Series will be advised closer to the time.


Included in our calendar but not run by RSYS:

        * RPEYC Wednesday afternoon racing

        * SOPS racing on March 21 that is being run by MHYC

Skippers should refer to these clubs regarding details.





Chinese Whisper sets record

Chinese Whisper has set a new record in the 2020 Teakle Classic Adelaide to Port Lincoln Yacht Race. They completed the race in 10 hours, 34 minutes, 17 seconds - 29 minutes faster than the previous record.

Owner David Griffith writes: 

"After our successful Sydney to Hobart Race (1st IRC Div 2 , 5th overall IRC and 7th on Line Honours) Chinese Whisper was sailed to Adelaide to await the Teakle Adelaide to Port Lincoln Race on 21 February followed by the Teakle Pt Lincoln Week regatta.

The 156nm race attracted more than 40 entrants for this year's race. The route takes the fleet past Marion Reef at the foot of the York Peninsula to Cape Spencer, then North West past Wedge and Thistle Islands and Dangerous Reef, to the finish in Boston Bay. 

The scenery is beautiful whilst daylight lasts, and after dark it requires very accurate navigation to avoid islands, reefs and fish farms. Our navigator Adrienne Cahalan brought us through the danger points superbly.

The race was a very fast reaching and downwind event after clearing Marion Reef.

It was great to have fellow Squadron Member Rupert Henry on board as it was his first race on the boat since his incredible two-handed Melbourne to Osaka race in 2018, when he broke the record.

Congratulations to Matt Allen on Ichi Ban for his win overall on IRC in the event as well as the subsequent Teakle Lincoln Week regatta.

The regatta held the following Monday to Thursday was a real treat for us. The hospitality from the Pt Lincoln Yacht Club, supported by the principal sponsor Peter Teakle, was exceptional. Beach parties and superb flat water racing in the most scenic archipelago made for a most worthwhile event that we would be only too happy to return to in future years."

Watch a video interview with Griffith here

The delighted crew on arrival


Photos by Take 2 Photography


Success at the NSL

Last weekend the team of Maddie O'Shea, Brooke Wilson, Marlena Berzins and Tiana Wittey finished 3rd in the SAILING Champions League – Asia Pacific northern qualifier sailed out of Hunters Hill Sailing Club.  Eleven teams representing nine clubs contested the event. The format for the umpired fleet event has six boats per race, and teams rotate boats throughout the racing.

Saturday’s racing on the windward/leeward course off Woolwich on Sydney Harbour’s western shoreline was blown out by a strong wind warning. Losing half the series compressed Sunday’s schedule for competitors, race officials and visiting umpires. Races were short and snappy, with a three minute warning for each.  
"With around 18 races run, our RSYS team remained focused and steadily improved as the day went on," said Tiana Wittey. "The RL21s proved to be fun and dynamic boats and we really enjoyed testing our skills and knowledge by transitioning into a boat we had never sailed on before. Unfortunately in one of our races our spinnaker halyard broke, forcing us to finish that race earlier than anticipated. Overall, the regatta was wonderful and we are so proud to have represented the RSYS and come home with a third place. We have been working extremely hard as a team and are expecting big things in our future," she added.

The team has qualified for the 2020 SAILING Champions League – Asia Pacific Final.  This was to be sailed early April but has now been postponed. 

Click here to view a short wrap-up video from the event

Final results here

image Beau Outteridge

Sydney Harbour Regatta

Performance Spinnaker div 1 was won by UBS WILD THING    Adam Lavis    CYCA with many Squadron Members competing including :
9         7133    EUPHORIA    Anthony Coleman    RSYS    
10       7367    JACKIE CLARE    Geoff Davidson    RSYS    

X-RAY    Ray Parrott    DSC won div 2 and KELSEA BLUE    Adrian Williams    RSYS came 8th.

Div 3 was won by WIND CHARMER    Peter Francis    GFS  and the top 10 was packed with RSYS boats:  
4         217    WHIMSICAL    Gordon Ingate    RSYS    
5         132    WINDSONG II    John Vickery    RSYS   
7         3654    MINGARA III    Philip Crane    RSYS    
9         17    WALLOP    G Aitchison P Kiely    RSYS    
9         1685    BEOWULF    Stafford Watts    RSYS    
9         6690    KIRSTEN III    Ken Chase & John Bow    RSYS    
9         3660    CASAMAJOR    Charles Moore    RSYS    
9         327    ZEUS 11    James Dunstan    RSYS    
9         2131    TINGARI    John Jeremy    RSYS

Congratulations to Club Members ADELA    David Lamond for taking 2nd in the Super 30s, ERICA    Peter Williams for 3rd place in the X-yachts and to ALLEGRO    John Taylor  for 3rd in Non Spinnaker div 1.

The Cavalier 28 class was won by SCUTTLEBUTT    Greg Purcell     RSYS.

The International Yngling class held their NSW State Chamionships within the main event. Squadron boats made up eight of the nine boat fleet.

1  MISS PIBB    Hamish Jarrett    RSYS
2  KARMA    Gary Wogas    GRSC    
3  BLACK ADDER    Gary Pearce    RSYS

The J70 class was won by JUNO    Reg Lord    CYCA, and RSYS boats did very well: 
3  MADNESS    Paul Breslin    RSYS    
4  MAYBE J    Michael Nash    RSYS    
5  THE JACKAL    Karyn Gojnich    RSYS

View final results here

Day 1 report and video

Day 2 report and video

Photos of iSUPER and Yngling fleet by Andrea Francolini