An outgoing cruise ship created havoc with the fleet in the Combined Clubs Harbour Race Series on Hobart’s River Derwent today, with many yachts struggling to get out of its way in less than five knots of wind.
Galapagos Duck sails past the cruise ship Silver Whisper in Sullivans Cove before the start of today’s racing
The disruption to their race caused some unexpected results for race one, compounded by problems in finishing the shortened course race.
Race officer Biddy Badenach had advised Hobart port control that, in view of the expected 2pm departure of the Silver Whisper, he would set a mid-river course as far east as possible to give the ship a clear passage down the western side of the river.
'However, the pilot elected to take the ship down the middle of the river and right through the fleet, creating havoc,' Badenach said after the race.
For race two, Badenach took the fleet south towards Taroona, chasing the sea breeze with success, giving the fleet 20-25 knots of wind.
There was one misfortune, as a result of the fresh breeze. Group 2 yacht Trouble rounded up less than a minute before the start of race 2 and collided with the committee boat, causing damage to both vessels.
Group 6 yachts heading down the Derwent today
In the Farr 40s, War Games (Wayne Banks-Smith) provisionally won the first race from Wired (Stephen Boyes) and Voodoo Chile (Lloyd Clark) but in race two victory went to POW (Craig Clifford) from Tilford Auto Group (Hughie Lewis) and Voodoo Chile, with War Games fourth.
In Group 1, Paul Boutchard’s J35 Mem caused an upset by winning both PHS and AMS handicap categories in the first race from Host Plus Executive (Jeff Cordell) and Tas Paints (Ian Stewart) after the two Mumm 36s dead-heated for line honours.
Host Plus Executive won the IRC category from Intrigue (Don Calvert), which finished only fourth in fleet, apparently affected by the cruise ship sailing through the fleet.
In the second race, Intrigue was back to her best, the Castro 40 finishing at the front of the fleet and winning both AMS and IRC handicap categories and placing second to Tas Paints under PHS scoring.
The Group 2 fleet results were also mixed between the two races, with Silicon Ship (Clark Wyatt) scoring an outright win in the first windward/leeward race, but placing fifth in race two, which went to Hot August Night (Nat Morgan) which had been OCS (premature starter) in race one.
Miss Conduct preparing to start today
In the first race for Group 2, Silicon Ship took first place on corrected time by by 23 seconds from Just in Time (Mick Sheehan), third place going to Frank Chatterton’s Kamehameha. In the second race, Hot August Night won from Wildfire (Team Wildfire) and Rousabout (Grahame Inglis).
Group 4 and Group 5 sailed a fixed harbour course with light and variable winds, with Hornet (Neville Georgeson) winning Group 4 from Terry Bragg’s Galapagos Duck and Total Lock Alarms, skippered by Bellerive Yacht Club commodore John Mills.
In Group Peter Bugg's Don’t Bugg Me finished 10th in fleet but first on corrected time, winning from Spinner (Peter Limb) and Ragtime (Tom Kirkland).