by Will Canty
Newcastle businessman and sailing identity Kym Butler of Butlers Business and Law aboard his Yacht 'One for the Road' is once again representing the City of Newcastle contesting the 2011 Audi Sydney Gold Coast Race.
Audi Sydney Gold Coast Yacht Race 2011 start
Racing in a new boat purchased in September 2010 with a mixture of old hands and several new faces in his fourth Sydney to Gold Coast Race, Butler is confidant that his team will put in a solid performance.
Commenting today from Sydney, Butler stated 'This race for us is really a shake down for the boat and crew, it’s an opportunity for the crew to get in some offshore sailing together as we work toward a potential 2011 Sydney to Hobart campaign. We have new faces on board, a new boat and we’re keen to see how she performs at sea in what ever conditions are thrown at us – although at this stage the weather is looking light and therefore likely to be a very tactical race'.
The 384 nautical mile course takes the fleet from the start in Sydney Harbour out through Sydney Heads before turning left and heading north past, Newcastle, Port Macquarie, Coffs Harbour, Ballina to the finish line off Main Beach at Southport, Queensland.
Michael Logan from the Bureau of Meteorology delivered the weather forecast to 140 competitors at the official race briefing last night at the CYCA, commenting that the race record of 27 hours 35 minutes 43 seconds, looks safe for another year. Logan reported that conditions throughout the race were expected to be light to moderate with forecast North-to-North Easterly winds of approximately 10-15 knots to be the norm.
As crews approach the NSW/Queensland border the breeze should shift to the South East and it will be a case of being in the right place at the right time to take advantage of the change in conditions. It is expected to be a highly tactical race - the big question for the crews will be whether to roll the dice and go offshore to try to find some breeze or stay inside to benefit from the land breeze. Only time will tell who will win this lottery!
Racing will commence at 1pm on Saturday 30 July, from a start line at Steele Point, with Joe King, Dealer Principal Audi Centre Sydney, firing the historic 19th century replica cannon to send the fleet north.
To track One for the Road throughout the please view the race yacht tracker map via http://goldcoast.cyca.com.au