by Josh Impey
Wild Oats approaches the finish line in the Derwent - 2013 Rolex Sydney Hobart
Southern Spars rigged yachts have taken Line Honours victory in the Rolex Sydney to Hobart nine years running, with Wild Oats XI coming in on top for the seventh time; a record equalling feat.
What is more significant to note is that Southern Spars rigged yachts have taken all of the podium spots for the past five years and top five in the past two years. 'This grand prix racing is what Southern Spars was built on and it is great to see that the company is a step above the rest, dominating the Sydney to Hobart since 2005. These great results are a direct link to the company’s high performance composite spars and rigging,' says Director Mark Hauser.
saw three new Southern Spars Thin Ply rig packages and one complete refit get stepped in preparation for the Rolex Sydney to Hobart; Bob Oatley’s 100’ Wild Oats XI, Anthony Bell’s 100’ Perpetual Loyal (ex- Speedboat), Matt Allen’s 60’ Ichi Ban and a complete refit on Karl Kwok’s 80’ Beau Geste’s rig. All four projects were ordered at the same time and needed to be delivered by the end of November in preparation for the race. 'This proved to be a challenge for our design and production team, but with true Southern Style we delivered all of the packages on time, ensuring that they were all at the start line on Boxing Day,' says Hauser.
Mark Hauser, Director of Southern Spars, goes hands on while testing - Alfa Romeo - Media Day 19 October 2009
'What is also important to note is that our EC6 carbon rigging has been on all of the winning yachts since 2005 and all four of the 2013 packages chose to utilize EC6,' says Hauser.
This year’s Sydney to Hobart shaped up to be one of the most exciting editions on record, with the battle of the giants taking centre stage. With the newly refitted Wild Oats XI and Perpetual Loyal going head to head, it was a battle never to be forgotten, with lead changes along the way. However it was Wild Oats XI who managed to push a little harder, pulling ahead and holding a 26 nautical mile lead over Loyal until the finish. Dockside Skipper Mark Richards was amazed at how well Wild Oats went when it got windier and windier, and commented, 'We just got faster and faster compared to the other boats – it was a really cool experience.'
'The Rolex Sydney to Hobart Yacht race is the largest and most well respected ocean race in the Southern Hemisphere. For that reason it is held deeply in the heart of the company, with many of the team at Southern Spars having made the historic crossing through the Bass Straight. Congratulations to the all of the owners and crews on board Southern Spars rigged yachts that competed in the 2013 Rolex Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race, with special mention to Gerhard Ruether and his superyacht Zefiro which is currently half way through a round the world circumnavigation,' says Hauser.
Perpetual Loyal gained the upper hand late last night over Wild Oats XI in the 2013 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race
2013 Line Honours results (top five all Southern Spars rigged yachts)
1. Wild Oats XI
Wild Oats XI heads towards the Derwent River - 2013 Rolex Sydney Hobart Race
Robert Oatley NSW
28 Dec, 07:07:27 PM
2. Perpetual LOYAL (ex-Speedboat)
Anthony Bell NSW
28 Dec, 10:19:56 PM
3. Ragamuffin 100 (ex-Maximus)
Syd Fischer NSW
28 Dec, 11:48:00 PM
4. Black Jack (ex-Telefonica)
Peter Harburg QLD
29 Dec, 04:09:34 AM
5. Beau Geste
Karl Kwok Hong Kong
29 Dec, 04:10:45 AM
Perpetual Loyal on the morning of 27 December - Day 2 2013 Rolex Sydney Hobart Race
Beau Geste - Start 2013 Rolex Sydney Hobart Race
Black Jack after start of 69th Rolex Sydney Hobart
Ichi Ban (Matt Allen) charges down Sydney Harbour - 29013 Rolex Sydney Hobart start
Part of the Southern Spars impressive spar construction facility that has been used for the construction of America’s Cup wingsails, Super yacht masts and multiple Volvo Ocean 65 rigs
The Volvo Ocean 65 mast sections are made in two halves by Southern Spars, New Zealand.
Southern Spars rig - Beau Geste - November 21, 2013
Beau Geste - Start, Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2013
Beau Geste is splashed at the Southern Spars yard, Westhaven, prior to having her rig fitted and sea-trialing