Please select your home edition
Edition
Lancer Lasts Longer

Sydney Gold Coast Yacht Race - Wharington puts the foot down

by Jennifer Crooks on 27 Jul 2013
2013 Sydney to Gold Coast - Fleet working their way up the Harbour. © Andrea Francolini Photography http://www.afrancolini.com/
In the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s Sydney Gold Coast Yacht Race this afternoon, amidst a large spectator fleet, Grant Wharington put the foot down on his 100 foot Wild Thing to lead the 47 boat fleet out of Sydney Harbour.

Despite earlier concerns at the race briefing this morning, the light airs did not bother the Queensland super maxi or her crew, leaving daylight between them and the rest of the fleet as they headed north towards the Southport destination.

As earlier predicted by many, it could be anyone’s race, as old and small mixed it with the newer and largest in the fleet, after the 1.00pm start on Sydney Harbour today in the first race of the CYCA’s Blue Water Point Score series.

Wharington’s mid-line line start in 3 knots of westerly on an outgoing tide and his tactic of heading east and sailing deep into Watsons Bay paid huge dividends.

Shortly after the spinnaker start, the breeze started to gain a little momentum and those who gave Wild Thing the most trouble were the revamped 24 year-old Audi Sunshine Coast(Rod Jones), the 50 footer originally launched as Heaven Can Wait for Warren Johns, who died last year.

As the westerly faded to almost nothing during a transition in breeze, Midnight Rambler, the Ker 40 of Ed Psaltis/Ed Thomas/Michael Bencsik was making gains on Audi Sunshine Coast.

Having previously won the 384 nautical mile race and won the fatal 1998 Hobart race, Psaltis (at the helm) and his co-owners had overtaken Jones’ Queensland entry, which was struggling in the next to nothing, while the rest of the fleet was left floundering in the Harbour.

As the clock ticked to 1.35pm, a light north-easterly breeze arrived and initially favoured the top three yachts, which were at Sydney Heads, with Wild Thing having exited the Harbour. By then, the fleet was literally split into three.

By 1.48pm, the second push was abeam of Lady Bay, just inside South Head and led by CYCA Commodore, Howard Piggott and his Beneteau First 40, Flying Cloud. The new Black Jack (Peter Harburg, Qld), the Volvo 70 formerly launched as Telefonica, was giving chase, with Peter Millard and John Honan’s Lahana up with them.


In the third group, some of the smallest in the fleet, such as Kim Jaggar and Travis Read’s Davidson 34 Illusion and the Northshore 11.1m Mortgage Choice Rumba (Robert Carr/Stephanie Cook/Kerry Burke), still had around half of the Harbour to cover before they too would exit the Harbour.

Shortly after 3.00pm, Rod Jones’ crew reported: 'The team onboard Audi Sunshine Coast very happy with the start and the run down the Harbour; a bit of good fortune as well always helps, but well sailed by all on board.

'We’re currently in third place, just off Dee Why and about to be passed by Black Jack to windward,' said crew members who were sailing in 'about 6 knots of pressure in a nice nor’ easter postcard conditions.'


From aboard one of the race favourites, Bill Wild’s Custom 55, Wedgetail, navigator Will Oxley reported: 'Slow start, but just beautiful winter’s day to compensate. We’re sailing just off Long reef in a 5 knot north-easterly breeze.'

After getting away to a good start, Oxley’s ride got caught in the second group of boats when the breeze started to dwindle. 'Audi Sunshine Coasthad best start of the 50 footers, but we are slowly reeling her in,' he said.

'The Volvo 70's don't seem to be big fans of the light airs,' the navigator noted after the slow exit of Black Jack and the Jones 70, Southern Excellence II (formerly Ichi Ban), which was also in the second pack.

The CYCA’s proven yacht tacker system will allow family, friends and yachting enthusiasts to follow the race - and their favourite yachts - for its duration. Each yacht will be fitted with a Yellowbrick tracker that will obtain a position using the GPS satellite network, and then transmit that position back to Yellowbrick HQ using the Iridium satellite network.

Each yacht’s position is then visualised on the race yacht tracker map here, or overlaid on Google Earth.In addition, the yacht tracker system also shows distance to finish line and progressive corrected time positions under the IRC, ORCi and PHS handicap divisions throughout the race.

For more information and a full entry list log on to Gold Coast website, follow us on Twitter Twitter website or like us on Facebook Facebook website

Pantaenius - Fixed ValueT Clewring CruisingFremantle to Bali Race 660x82

Related Articles

Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge - Images from Régates Royales
The final round of the Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge is underway at Cannes in the 38th Régates Royales. The final round of the Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge is underway at Cannes in the 38th Régates Royales with classic yachts and Dragons. Eugenia Bakunova of mainsail.ru was on the water at Cannes and provided this gallery of images from the penultimate day of the regatta.
Posted today at 11:12 am
Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge - More images from Régates Royales
Second gallery from the final round of the Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge at Cannes The 38th Régates Royales, the final round of the Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge is underway at Cannes. Eugenia Bakunova of mainsail.ru was on the water at Cannes and provided this second gallery of images from the penultimate day.
Posted today at 10:56 am
Olympic Gold medalist and Volvo Ocean Race champ nominated for WS post
HM King Constantine and the Election Committee are pleased to announce full details of candidates eligible for election World Sailing's President of Honour, HM King Constantine and the Election Committee have announced details of the candidates eligible for election as President and Vice-President to its Board of Directors. The President and seven Vice-Presidents, two of which must be from each gender, will be elected at World Sailing's General Assembly in Barcelona, Spain on Sunday 13 November 2016.
Posted today at 5:47 am
Swiss stars Alinghi lose mast in collision in action-packed day
The Extreme Sailing Series™ lived up to its name on the penultimate day of Act 6 in Madeira The Extreme Sailing Series™ lived up to its name on the penultimate day of Act 6 in Madeira as a collision between rivals Alinghi and Red Bull Sailing Team resulted in the Swiss crew losing their mast.
Posted today at 3:23 am
Oman Air in peak form going into final day at Extreme Sailing Series
A fresher breeze on the third day gave the GC32 fleet a chance to give the spectators an invigorating show of action A fresher breeze on the third day gave the GC32 fleet a chance to give the spectators lining the shores on the south coast of the island an invigorating show of speed and action and it was Oman Air that led the way with seven podium places – including two outright wins – in seven races.
Posted on 24 Sep
Perfect birthday for Sébastien at GC32 La Reserva de Sotogrande Cup
The westerly Levante breeze was expected to blow at about 10 to 11 knots for day three of the regatta The westerly Levante breeze was expected to blow at about 10 to 11 knots for day three of the regatta, but the long white cloud hanging over the Rock of Gibraltar signified that there might be less. Even with just five or six knots the GC32s were still able to get on the foils as they launched off the start line of the first race.
Posted on 24 Sep
Extreme Sailing Series – Red Bull Sailing Team collides with Alinghi
At 1515 BST today during race eight, Red Bull Sailing Team collided with Alinghi, resulting in Alinghi losing its mast. At 1515 BST today during race eight of the series in the Madeira Islands, Red Bull Sailing Team collided with Alinghi, resulting in Alinghi losing its mast.
Posted on 24 Sep
Ginger’s early lead at MC38 Spring Regatta
Maserati is running second and John Bacon’s Dark Star third and both will carry costly seven and nine point respectively An hour and a half delay due to insufficient breeze eventually transitioned to an 8-9 knot easterly and consecutive starts were run off Garden Island’s naval base on the harbour’s southern shoreline.
Posted on 24 Sep
Sailing World Cup - Qingdao chances shorten as top tens confirmed
It was all about a place in the Medal Race on day four of the SWC Qingdao as top ten were confirmed in all seven fleets. It was all about a place in the Medal Race on day four of the Sailing World Cup Qingdao as the top ten were confirmed in all seven fleets.
Posted on 24 Sep
Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge - More images from Régates Royales
Second gallery from the final round of the Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge at Cannes The 38th Régates Royales, the final round of the Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge is underway at Cannes. Eugenia Bakunova of mainsail.ru was on the water at Cannes and provided this second gallery of images.
Posted on 24 Sep