News Home Video Gallery Newsletters Features Magnetic Is RW FishingBoating MarineBusiness-World Photo Gallery
Event Calendar : Saltash II freak and most famous Diamond ever

Saltash II freak and most famous Diamond ever

'Saltash II crew - 2007 Brisbane to Gladstone race'    Event Media
The relatively small 42 year old Brisbane sloop Saltash 11 has secured a stranglehold on the title as the undisputed Brisbane to Gladstone Yacht Race champion.

Her remarkable history in winning eight races on corrected handicap is unlikely to be ever challenged and stands alone as the most successful performance ever recorded in a major Australian Blue Water Classic.

Surprisingly her original design conceived by Englishman Jack Holt for racing in day sailing regattas was never meant to become an ocean racer simply because it was considered too small and had no comfort below deck for the crew to rest and hide from the elements.

However that changed when the innovative Bill and Ian Wright wished to fulfil a career ambition to follow their grandfather Norman Wright Snr their father Ron and Uncle Norman Wright Jnr into the colourful history of Queensland’s iconic yacht race.

The third generation Brisbane boat builders bought a second hand Jack Holt Yachting World Diamond class sloop which was skilfully modified to suit ocean racing safety standards and entered the 1985 Easter classic on a personal mission to continue with the family tradition dating back to the first race in 1949.

Gladstone Race history was firmly entrenched in the Wright family boat yard they had built the mighty Norseman which contested the first race in 1949 followed by outstanding performances to win The Courier-Mail Cup in 1951,1952,1954,1955 and 1956.

Fifty years later the Wright family have continued to dominate since 1999 the modified Saltash II skilfully sailed by principal helmsman Ian Wright brother Bill, navigator Peter Cavill and a collection of good mates including Tony Reik, John Gower and Trent Rowell added another five victories to their three previous Gladstone Race wins in 1986, 1992 and 1993.

Saltash II has wave rode the white crested Coral Sea ground swell with unmatched handicap rated boat speed winning seven of her eight races over the past 16 years.

Her crew have been challenged but have shown they are no ordinary ocean racing combination by piloting the multi-chine Saltash II to her history making scorecard under all forms of handicap ratings from IOR, IMS, Channel and IRC.

This form alone is feared by the best Australian ocean racing crews who claim the 42 year old yacht to be a freak.

The fear remains with several rival skippers including Sydney-Hobart champion Roger Hickman remarking he would like to buy Saltash II and have a bon-fire.

However no offers have reached the contract stage and the baby sloop will continue to be the most famous Diamond of them all.

Naturally her crew will be hoping for another spinnaker sailing forecast to continue with their domination over the past 10 years winning in 1999, 2001,2003, 2005, and 2007

Unfortunately the popular Sydney-Hobart race winning skipper Bob Steel who steered Quest to her impressive win in the 50th race has not entered this year but the fleet is stacked with exceptional talent and includes the 2002 and 2004 Courier Mail Cup winner Grundig/AAPT entered this year under the Spirit of Queensland Battle Flag and the Michael Balkin skippered Mooloolaba sloop Corum who showed her class to beat a high standard fleet in 2006.

As expected Saltash II remains as the pre-race favourite but her five member crew can expect to face another supreme test of personal endurance in what promises to be a demanding race highlighted with spectacular racing when the fleet sails away from the start line off Shorncliffe to weather the Garnet Rock Beacon before heading out of Moreton Bay on the historical 308 n/ml voyage to Gladstone.

Ian Grant

by Ian Grant


Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

8:13 PM Mon 10 Mar 2008 GMT

Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.

Click for further information on

Related News Stories:

26 Mar 2008  Top performance - Brisbane to Gladstone
24 Mar 2008  Renaissance wins Multihull Brisbane Gladstone
23 Mar 2008  Quantum Racing firms grip on Courier Mail Cup
22 Mar 2008  Five Brisbane to Gladstone wins for Martyn Riley
22 Mar 2008  Brisbane to Gladstone Pix
22 Mar 2008  Brisbane Gladstone Race 2008 Ichi Ban wins again
22 Mar 2008  Ichi Ban romps towards Gladstone win
21 Mar 2008  Wilparina ll leads Multihull Brisbane Gladstone
21 Mar 2008  Spirit of Queenslands retires - Gladstone race
21 Mar 2008  Ichi Ban holds lead in Brisbane to Gladstone

News - World & Australia

America's Cup Book Review: Winging It - Oracle Team USA's comeback *Feature by Richard Gladwell,

Rolex China Sea Race 2014 - nip and tuck for IRC honours by RHKYC and Guy Nowell, Sail-World Asia, Hong Kong

Round Hayling Island Race - Victory for Robert Kent
Australian Hansa Class Championships - Action underway at Goolwa
Audi IRC Australian Championship - Images by Andrea Francolini
Rolex China Sea Race - Ragamuffin 90 claims line honours victory
Rolex China Sea Race - Ragamuffin 90 extends unassailable lead
Good Friday casts light winds over Audi IRC Australian fleet + Video
SLAM Combined High Schools Champs - Makin makes it back to back wins
Rolex China Sea Race - Commanding lead for Ragamuffin
Audi IRC Australian Championship - Drama filled opening day
Why the 49er class is pushing hard to get finals format changed +Video
Brisbane to Gladstone Yacht Race - No multihull records this year
Alpari World Match Racing Tour: Can Williams surpass Gilmour's record?
PWA Cold Hawaii World Cup - Massive support from the local community
Les Voiles de St. Barth - Weather factors in + Video
HUD Vision: An interview with Afterguard Marine’s Alex Moret *Feature
ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyeres - The return of Outteridge and Jensen
Volvo Ocean Race - Dongfeng Race Team first official qualifier
ISAF Match Race Rankings for 16 April 2014
ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyeres – World’s best to race on French Riviera
Rolex China Sea Race – Fleet off to a clean start
Rolex China Sea Race Day 1   
America's Cup: Expected de Ridder penalty should be reduced *Feature   
Challenge takes the 2014 Quantum Sails Sydney 38 Victoria State Titles *Feature   
Seventh edition of Sail Port Stephens wraps up   
Dangerous surf conditions to affect the entire NSW coast this weekend   
Wounded Defence mates conjure the ‘Spirit of Mateship’   
2014 Audi IRC Australian Championships - Welcome mat out   
World Youth Sailing Week – Second edition officially presented + Video   
Rolex China Sea Race - Sailing classic returns   
SLAM Combined High Schools Champs - Makin aiming for back to back wins   
Les Voiles de St Barth – Fired up for battle   
CNN Mainsail Down Under for the 75th JJ Giltinan Trophy - 18ft skiffs   
Big week of sailing ahead for NZL Optimist sailors   
Volvo Ocean Race: North Sails on outfitting the Volvo 65   
Image gallery: James Cook High's Royal encounter on Steinlager 2 *Feature   
Volvo Ocean Race - Maersk Line named shipping partner   
Royal Southern Match Cup entrants include three WMRT card holders   
Sail Port Stephens - Plenty of action around the track   
Sail Port Stephens - A taste of some spectacular coastline   
Renaissance is not just for art galleries.   

For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News  

Switch Default Region to:

Social Media





New Zealand

United Kingdom

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World






Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text


Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery


Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery





Privacy Policy



Cookie Policy



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.