.Rolex Sydney Hobart 2012 - Robert Oatley’s Wild Oats XI has just broken her own 2005 race by 16 minutes and 58 seconds.
Rolex Sydney Hobart 2012 - Wild Oats XI a mile from the finish
Around four miles from the finish she hit a light patch, with some rapid crew work her code zero came down, she came back on breeze with a headsail and powered up again. The finish line is within sight.
Just two miles from finish she switched from a headsail to a code zero and tacked into a new breeze off Stanley Point, she was tight reaching, almost pointing at the Casino. It was blowing just five knots, very flat water, she was doing seven knots as she headed home. There was a massive media and spectator fleet on the water with medias helicopters throbbing overhead.
She was in a very light breeze, north, straight down the river… She was just minutes from the finish. It was blowing just three knots, blowing was to big a word. She was ghosting to the line.
Just 150 metres from the line Oats XI flicked back onto starboard. The windspeed was no more than three knots when she crossed, drifting across the line, with horns and hooters sounding to take her sixth line honours victory.
Back up the race track Syd Fischer's Ragamuffin Loyal is currently 8nm NE of Tasman Island with 48 nautical miles to go. Third is Peter Millard & John Honan’s Lahana, 27nm E of Cape Sonnerat, still 103 nm from Hobart.
In fourth place is Black Jack, skippered by Peter Harburg, five miles astern. Next is Stephen Ainsworth’s Loki another eight miles back.