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Lifestyle : Boat Show 2011
1HERSA1 S017 2005 Mustang Limited Edition This is the highest spec 3800 model available and is in immaculate condition 2 fussy owners from new with only 335 hours Full service history due to being serviced every 6 months, just anti-fouled Air Conditioned, Microwave, TV, Video, Clarion CD player, Genset, auto anchor, GPS, Fish Finder Full covers with new clears & carpet, removable front sun lounger pads and rear lounger Twin Volvo Penta's with high output 320HP 2.5m rigid hull inflatable tender with 5hp Mercury and easy drop davits Custom stainless steel bait board and rod holders on teak boarding platform Why buy new when you can purchase this exceptional family sports cruiser vessel that is fully optioned and ready to go for just $195,000. Please contact 0438 281 907 Call 0438 281 907 The largest marine precinct in the Southern Hemisphere Are you using the right VHF marine channel? The Australian Communications and Media Authority (the ACMA) has produced stickers to remind boaters of the purpose of each channel, and information cards which reinforce the importance of calling on Channel 16 and then switching. The information card also reminds you to always listen on Channel 16 when not using the radio. Visit the AMC at Stand 500 in the Marine Safety Precinct at the front entrance to AG48805 Hall 5 to discuss any marine radio issues and get your sticker or information card. The ACMA has also joined forces with the Australian Maritime College (AMC) to make the Marine VHF Radio Operators Handbook available as a free download from the AMC website for a limited time. Visit www.amc.edu.au/handbook. More information can be found at: www.acma.gov.au/vhfmarine. AG4076273AA-230711 The Sydney Morning Herald July 23- 24, 2011 17 SPECIAL REPORT A growing number of seniors are spending their twilight years on the water, writes Melinda Ham. SAILING AT SUNSET Old hands . . . (from left) Ken Moxham has been boating for almost 70 years; more and more retirees take to the seas. For nearly seven decades, Ken Moxham has had a passion for sailing. He and his brother learnt how to sail in dinghies as boys on the Parramatta River. They later took part in many championships and crewed Sydney to Hobart ocean yachts. Now, 76-year-old Moxham is a life member of the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club (RPAYC) in Newport and berths his 25-foot sailboat -- called ''Janet M'', after his wife -- at the club. Every Wednesday, rain or shine, most weeks of the year, Moxham volunteers on a start-boat in the middle of Pittwater, helping to lay out buoys for the courses and recording yachts' finishing times in the afternoon races. ''I love sailing,'' Moxham says. ''It's such freedom just using the wind in a non-mechanical way.'' Suzanne Davies, the general manager at RPAYC, where 44 per cent of members are over 60 years old and 18 per cent are over 70, says seniors play a pivotal role in the club. ''We encourage our senior members to take part in the club for as long as they want to, in any way they are able,'' she says. Many still crew yachts in twilight and afternoon races, help in race administration, organise group cruises, such as the current six-month expedition from Pittwater up to the Coral Coast, and mentor the younger sailors and provide them with financial support to launch their racing careers. Australia has a growing senior population and many of them who are fit and healthy take part in kayaking, cruising, fishing and sailing. NSW Maritime says 38.5 per cent of motor-boat licence holders in the state are 50 to 69 years old and 7 per cent are 70 and over. Sarah Stevenson, the customer service manager at SmartBoating, a yacht share and charter company in Bayview, says many older people buy boats outright and also take part in SmartBoating's yacht syndicate program. ''We do find our senior sailors really benefit from their time on the water, coming back relaxed and smiling with glowing cheeks,'' Stevenson says. ''Sailing offers seniors the chance to relax and unwind with friends and family.'' Ken Evans is a senior boating enthusiast who recently retired from a 25-year career in the boating industry, most of it as a director at Mercury Marine for New Zealand, Australia and the Pacific. Evans says an increasing number of seniors are towing their boats behind a car around the country to different locations. ''They are using it like a caravan on the water and it's much more affordable,'' he says. ''You can even take a boat on a trailer to a caravan site and plug into the power.'' Advances in electronic devices on boats also now enable seniors to manoeuvre with more ease. For example, joysticks enable the driver to smoothly get into a berth, while ''sky hooks'' keep a boat in a fixed position while they organise ropes, Evans says. Stevenson says other modern features, such as self-tacking headsails and electric winches, also make life easy for seniors. ''Our Seawind catamarans have enough deck space for wheelchair users,'' she says. ''And because they don't heel -- lean over -- under sail, they are perfect for passengers who need extra care.'' Safety must still be a priority for all boating enthusiasts -- including seniors, says a spokesman for NSW Maritime, Neil Patchett. This is particularly important if they are poor swimmers or boating at night, alone or offshore. ''A common theme we've seen in recent accidents, especially in the terrible month of June, is that people were not wearing lifejackets and in several cases, they were over 50 [years old],'' he says. Lifejackets come in many shapes, styles and sizes; some can be built into wind jackets or have an inflatable yoke, he says. ''Wearing lifejackets gives seniors more competence and confidence in boating and the freedom to enjoy their time on the water. You can get one for less than $70 -- a lot less than what many people spend on their fishing gear.''
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