Please select your home edition
Edition
SailX 728x90

Festival of Sails - Hooligan ready for the challenge

by Lisa Ratcliff on 24 Oct 2012
Hooligan in action Craig Greenhill / Saltwater Images © http://www.saltwaterimages.com.au
The 2012 Audi IRC Australian Champion, Marcus Blackmore and his TP52 Hooligan, will reign for less than five months before being challenged at the next championship, that is to take place at the Royal Geelong Yacht Club in January as part of the annual Festival of Sails.

'We only get to savour the glory for a few months...we’ll have to win it again,' quips Blackmore. He has every reason to speak so boldly given Hooligan has dominated at every Australian regatta for the past two years, a second their worst result.

Hooligan won the Festival of Sails IRC grand prix division in 2010 and Jim Farmer and Chris Meads’ New Zealand fifth generation TP52, Georgia, built from the same mould as Hooligan, swept to victory unrivalled last year.

The 2013 Audi IRC Australian Championship will be top heavy with TP52s as shortly after the Festival of Sails the class will host the first of a three-part Australian east coast circuit from Sandringham Yacht Club.

Peter Harburg’s Reichel Pugh 66, Black Jack, gave Blackmore, of Blackmore’s vitamin empire, a real scare at the 2012 Audi IRC Australian Championship, raced as part of the Audi Hamilton Island Race Week in August. Harburg was tipped to win the Championship, until the final race delivered Hooligan outright victory by a single point from Shogun and consigned Black Jack to a gut wrenching third.

'He who makes the least mistakes wins, and that was telling at Hamilton Island,' surmises Blackmore. 'We kept going over the week and with a little bit of luck...boom! We were in. To win the championship like that was pretty neat, probably the best win I’ve had'.

'When we come to Geelong we’ve got to be careful to avoid the situation we had at Hamilton Island Race Week where the TPs fought one another and Black Jack took off on its own,' he cautions himself and his class mates.

Black Jack’s skipper Mark Bradford is looking forward to the even conditions and flat water of Geelong’s Corio Bay, and another shot at the TP52s, which have affirmed their IRC dominance in the past couple of years.

'We are one of the few IRC boats to have come so close to a TP,' said Bradford of the final Hamilton Island scoresheet, the upshot of the costly IRC optimisation undertaken by Harburg, a Queensland property developer, for exactly that outcome.
Before Geelong, Harburg and his crew have to finish the Rolex Sydney Hobart unscathed. 'First we have to get through the Hobart without gear failure' Bradford added.

Showing their keenness, the first four entries for the Audi IRC Australian Championship are TP52s, including Shogun, Hooligan, Calm (Williams / Van der Slot) and Calm 2 (Jason Van der Slot).

Organisers are anticipating seven or eight TP52s at the Australian Championship, including 'four of the best TP52s in the world' tips Blackmore, plus other high performance Australian and international IRC yachts.

The four day Audi IRC Australian Championship, starting Thursday January 24th, will form part of the annual Festival of Sails regatta which is acclaimed as the southern hemisphere’s largest annual sailing Festival of Sails website
Harken AUS Reflex 660x82Ensign 660BIA 2016 Sydney Boat Show 660x82

Related Articles

2014 Festival of Sails - Fiftieth entry announced
2014 Festival of Sails - Ian Murray is pleased to announce that Michael Culhane’s Weekend Option is the 50th entry 2014 Festival of Sails - Royal Geelong Yacht Club Commodore Ian Murray is pleased to announce that Michael Culhane’s Northshore 38, Weekend Option, is the 50th entry. Culhane’s prize is having a story written about him, and he enjoyed the opportunity to talk about what brings he and his 38-footer from the Royal Melbourne Yacht Squadron back year after year
Posted on 27 Nov 2013
Andrea Francolini's unique photos of Festival of Sails 2013
Andrea Francolini provides his personal view of the event when searching for something ‘different.’ Festival of Sails 2013 - Photographer Andrea Francolini provides his personal view of the event when searching for something ‘different.’
Posted on 30 Jan 2013
Festival of Sails - IRC Championship - Shogun empire
Festival of Sails 2013. Geelong put on great weather for the championships with ten to twenty knots of wind and flat sea Festival of Sails 2013. Geelong put on great weather for the championships with ten to twenty knots of wind and flat seas. The series which was taken out by Shogun on a count back from Hooligan. Black Jack got line honors for every race but narrowly missed out on handicap.
Posted on 28 Jan 2013
Festival of Sails 2013 - Teri Dodds Images
The Festival of Sails has come to a close for 2013, with many highlights from a very busy five days of sailing The Festival of Sails has come to a close for 2013, with many highlights from a very busy five days of sailing and shoreside entertainment. Teri Dodds shares a few images from this great regatta, which was held on the waters in and out of Corio Bay, in Geelong, Australia.
Posted on 28 Jan 2013
Audi IRC Australian Championship (Festival of Sails) – The Business
The business is complete at the Audi IRC Australian Championships that are part of Victoria’s Festival of Sails The business of determining winners and conducting race management is complete at the Audi IRC Australian Championships. Part of Victoria’s Festival of Sails at Geelong, the whole regatta has been blessed with good winds, sunshine, festivities and laughter, much to the delight of event management.
Posted on 28 Jan 2013
Festival of Sails 2013 - Sydney 38 images from Teri Dodds
Official photographer for the Festival of Sails 2013, Teri Dodds spent some time on the Sydney 38 course Official photographer for the Festival of Sails 2013, Teri Dodds spent some time on the Sydney 38 course and shares these images with you.
Posted on 28 Jan 2013
Festival of Sails images by Alex McKinnon
Photographer Alex McKinnon was on site at the Festival of Sails in Geelong to capture this gallery of action shots! Photographer Alex McKinnon was on site at the Festival of Sails in Geelong to capture this gallery of action shots! Enjoy!
Posted on 28 Jan 2013
Andrea Francolini's photos of IRC Australian Championships 2013
Leading Australian photographer Andrea Francolini continues his coverage of the Audi IRC Australian Championships at Gee Leading Australian photographer Andrea Francolini continues his coverage of the Audi IRC Australian Championships at Geelong.
Posted on 27 Jan 2013
Festival of Sails - Audi IRC Nationals - Cliff hanger finale
Rob Hanna’s Shogun V takes the Audi IRC Class A National title after winning the tie-break over Marcus Blackmore The Audi IRC Australian Class A Champion for 2013 has been decided with local entry, Rob Hanna’s Shogun V hitting the jackpot in a cliff hanger countback finish to the nine-race series.
Posted on 27 Jan 2013
Festival of Sails 2013 - International A-Class - Breakthrough win
With borrowed boat and demon of an alias, International A-Class David Parker claimed his first ever major regatta win. Festival of Sails 2013. With a borrowed boat and a demon of an alias, International A-Class young-gun David Parker claimed his first ever major regatta win.
Posted on 27 Jan 2013