Please select your home edition
Edition
Auckland On Water Boat Show

Launceston to Hobart Yacht Race full of offshore talent

by Peter Campbell on 11 Dec 2013
The Protagonist in last year’s race - Launceston to Hobart Race 2012 Peter Campbell
For the Derwent Sailing Squadron’s seventh annual National Launceston to Hobart Yacht Race 2013 a quality fleet, full of offshore sailing talent, will line up later this month.

Entries have come from Victorian, Northern and Southern Tasmanian yacht clubs and include eight past handicap division winning skippers of the 285 nautical mile race, with the 2013 edition starting from Beauty Point on December 27.

Sailing in its first L2H race will be the winner of the 1993 Sydney Hobart Race, John Mills and Ian Douglas’ Lyons 40 Nexedge, from Bellerive Yacht Club. Back in 1993 the yacht raced as Cuckoos Nest and more recently as Bombora.

Also entered is Lawless, a 31-footer which placed second overall in the 1984 Sydney Hobart, skippered by its designer and then owner, Victorian John Green. Lawless will be skippered in the L2H by Stephen McElwee from the Port Dalrymple Yacht Club at Beauty Point.

Lawless is one of five Northern yachts in the fleet, the others being David Allan’s Sydney 38, Obsession, also from PDYC, while the Tamar Yacht Club will be represented by Independence, Brett Wood’s Jeanneau 439, and Believe, Richard Fisher’s Beneteau 14.07.

Heading the fleet is two-times line honours winner The Fork in the Road, skippered by former Olympic sailor and dinghy world champion Garry Smith. Not only is Smith looking for back-to-back line honours but also has his sights set on the race record.

Helsal 3 set the benchmark in 2011 with an elapsed time of 1 day 16 hours 28 minutes and 18 seconds for the 285 nautical mile offshore race around Tasmania’s East Coast.

The Fork in the Road’s time last year was 1 day 17 53 minutes 00 seconds and Smith is aiming to better that time, and Helsal 3’s record, in this year’s race. The boat will also have a new medium-light headsail specifically made for possible use in the light winds often experienced sailing south through the Mercury Passage.

A feature of this year’s race will be the north versus south clash between two Beneteau First 45s for AMS handicap honours to decide the Overall winner.


Up against Richard Fisher’s Believe from the Tamar Yacht Club will be Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania member Mike Pritchard’s Audère, which made its offshore racing debut in the recent Maria Island Race.

Likely to be snapping at the heels of the 45-footers will be the John Mills’ Lyons 40 Nexedge and David Creese’s latest boat, the Mat 1245 Obsession (Creese Property) having its first offshore race, and Colin Denny’s The Protagonist, to be skippered by his son, Stuart.

Fisher was a division winner of the 2009 L2H with his previous boat Blue Sky while other past winning skippers and the yachts they sailing this year are Jeff Cordell (Host Plus Executive), David Creese (Obsession – Creese Property), David Rees (Whistler), Stewart Geeves (Footloose) and Tony Harman (Masquerade). Gary Smith has taken line honours twice with The Fork in the Road, but the boat sailed as Crotty Legal & Dental in 2008.

Apart from the major yacht clubs, this year’s race has drawn entries from two regional clubs, Andrew Matton-Johnson’s Pukana will represent the Austins Ferry Yacht Club and Andrew Scott’s Bellandean will be sailing under the burgee of the Huon Yacht Club.

Lining up for its seventh successive L2H will the remarkable little boat Kiaulani, Malcolm Cooper’s 33-year-old Snook 30 from the Derwent Sailing Squadron which recently swept the AMS, IRC and PHS handicap honours in the Maria Island Race.

Victorian entries are Lou Irving’s Cavalier 395 Cavarlo from Royal Brighton Yacht Club and Sarah Allard’s Elan 410 Saltair from the Royal Yacht Club of Victoria.

Alderman Albert van Zetten, Mayor of Launceston, will officially start the NATIONAL Launceston to Hobart Yacht Race 2013 from Beauty Point on the Tamar River at 10am on December 27. At Low Head the fleet will enter Bass Strait, sailing eastwards through the Banks Strait, then heading down Tasmania’s East Coast, including sailing through The Mercury Passage inside Maria Island off Orford.

After rounding Tasman Island the course will take the fleet across Storm Bay and up the River Derwent to finish off Hobart’s Castray Esplanade, the same finish line as the Rolex Sydney Hobart.

Hood SailsNaiadnavathome 660x82

Related Articles

Gstaad Yacht Club Centenary Trophy – 2 months to go to the 6th edition
The regatta is reserved to boats that are one hundred or more years old and in 2016 will celebrate its sixth edition. The regatta, unique in its genre, is reserved to boats that are one hundred or more years old and in 2016 will celebrate its sixth edition anniversary. Over the years, the Centenary trophy has gathered some of the most gorgeous and best performing classic yachts from the past century.
Posted today at 4:28 pm
Vendée Globe – Sébastien Destremau – Simplicity as a credo + Video
A native of Toulon in the south of France, Sébastien Destremau can lay claim to one of the smallest budgets of the fleet A native of Toulon in the south of France, Sébastien Destremau can lay claim to one of the smallest budgets of the fleet. His credo is to keep it simple, inexpensive and effective. Interview with the skipper of faceOcean, winner of the Calero Solo Transat back in the spring.
Posted today at 4:05 pm
The Vendée Globe – 100 days and counting
With some 100 days until the start, the first thing to note is that the fleet of participants is stronger than ever With some 100 days until the start, the first thing to note is that the fleet of participants is stronger than ever, since there are some twenty-eight skippers, registered and qualified, whilst ‘just’ twenty sailors took the start in 2012. As a result, we’re set to be close to or equal to the 2008 record (thirty skippers at the start)!
Posted today at 3:46 pm
Clipper Race – Constant trimming and little sleep in the North Sea
There is little opportunity for tactical moves and the timings of tacks are crucial if teams want to make vital gains. After a downwind start with spinnakers trimmed in light airs against the tide off Den Helder on the Dutch coast yesterday, the fleet has been match racing across the North Sea towards the Thames Estuary.
Posted today at 12:28 pm
Bali attracts early interest
Interest in the 2017 Bali adventure, even at this early stage, is encouraging. Interest in the 2017 Bali adventure, even at this early stage, is encouraging. At first, the 2017 race and rally retains its traditional route to Benoa but from there it offers greater attractions than ever with the inclusion of an extension to the Javanese port of Banyuwangi and an organised “Spice Islands Rally”, a one-week circumnavigation of the island of Bali.
Posted today at 7:04 am
Brewin Dolphin Commodores' Cup - Lone bullets for the Brits
Despite three more inshore races being held on day five France Blue leads with a similar 11.5 point margin to yesterday 2016 Brewin Dolphin Commodores' Cup - Despite three more inshore races being held on day five of the Brewin Dolphin Commodores' Cup, the Royal Ocean Racing Club's biennial flagship event for three boat teams with Corinthian crews, France Blue leads with a similar 11.5 point margin to yesterday, but Flanders North Sea is now the team that has relieved France White of second place overall.
Posted today at 2:10 am
Supermaxi Scallywag has her first outing on Sydney Harbour
Scallywag is a 100' Super Maxi Yacht (ex Ragamuffin 100) owned by a HongKong Business man. Scallywag is a 100' Super Maxi Yacht (ex Ragamuffin 100) owned by a HongKong Business man. Yesterday the boat took it first sail on Sydney Harbour in preparation for this weekend's start of the CYCA Land Rover Sydney to Gold Coast Yacht Race
Posted on 28 Jul
Extreme Sailing Series– Oman Air sneak early lead despite bump on nose
Hamburg’s River Elbe in the HafenCity area was transformed into the ultimate test in Stadium Racing today Hamburg’s River Elbe in the HafenCity area was transformed into the ultimate test in Stadium Racing today, with the narrow river, passing traffic, high walls, shifty light winds and strong currents challenging the fleet on the opening day
Posted on 28 Jul
52 Super Series – Puerto Portals Week – Quantum Racing top of the pops
Quantum Racing stand on the threshold of their third regatta win of the season after sailing to their fourth win today. The Bay of Palma lived up to its one way traffic reputation for most of the time. The risk-reward equation for those pressing for the pin end launch was high. But significantly both of today’s race winners – Quantum Racing and Bronenosec– favoured the lower risk mid line starts where they had a better chance of coming away from the gun at maximum speed by staying clear of the jousting and jostling
Posted on 28 Jul
Debriefing the 2015-16 Clipper Round The World Race with Huw Fernie
Sail-World talked with Huw Fernie of Visit Seattle to learn more about a Clipper Round The World Race skipper’s life. Skipper Huw Fernie and his Visit Seattle crew took top honors in the Den Helder Northern Seas Challenge, marking their second podium finish during the 2015/16 Clipper Round The World Race. I recently caught up with Fernie to learn more about Visit Seattle’s success in the Den Helder Northern Seas Challenge, and to learn more about the life of a Clipper Round The World Race skipper.
Posted on 28 Jul