by Laura McKee
The competition looming for tomorrow’s traditional Prix d’ Elegance at Audi Hamilton Island Race Week is almost as serious as the on-water tussle for prestigious regatta silverware. The crew of Holy Cow and Carabella V are staging an all-out face off, both going for the title of Best Fun Themed Yacht and Crew.
Holy Cow in 2012 Audi Hamilton Island Race Week
Matthew McCann’s Carabella V is a new Xp50 design from the Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron which was launched in December 2012, the first of its kind in Australia. It is McCann and his wife Kate’s first Audi Hamilton Island Race Week, and they have brought their A game.
The McCann’s are looking to overthrow John Clinton’s Holy Cow tomorrow morning, their mascot ‘Hammy’ the whale their secret weapon. Island-goers might have noticed the whale posters all along the waterfront.
'Hammy the whale, who has been lost, is going to arrive in Hamilton Island because everybody up here is having a ‘whale of a time’,' said Kate McCann.
'The history of Hamilton Island shows that there used to be a farm full of cows and our campaign is to make sure we push the cows [Holy Cow] out of office,' she explained quite seriously.
John Clinton’s attention grabbing Beneteau 50 from Sydney, complete with a lime green spinnaker and spotted cow pattern on the hull, has dominated at the Prix d’ Elegance for the past two years, with no fierce competition to give the crew a run for their money.
The McCann’s believe it is time for a change, but John Clinton is taking the newcomer’s comments with a grain of salt.
'We want real competition; Carabella shouldn’t even get out of bed- it’s a pity they’ve wasted so much time already,' Clinton scoffed.
'We are also a major, serious political party and we are playing hard to get. Rudd is worried about our momentum. But we are the same as any party in that we promise everything and deliver nothing.
'Lots of people are looking forward to coming onto the udder side, because we have fun - us cows wander all over the place, but we don’t smoke the grass, just eat it,' Clinton joked.
prixd’elegance at the 2012 Audi Hamilton Island Race Week
The other category in the Prix d’ Elegance, an annual Audi Hamilton Island Race Weekhighpoint, is The Best Presented Yacht & Crew. Both categories will be judged at 9am as the boats leave the harbour tomorrow morning, Friday August 22nd,and the winners announced at Saturday’s night trophy presentation at the Convention Centre. Judges and spectators will be located past the Flag Deck of Hamilton Island Yacht Club.