Please select your home edition
Edition
T Clewring One Design

Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - Strong fleet ready for action

by Jennifer Crooks RSHYR media on 14 Dec 2013
Wild Oats XI in action Andrea Francolini
Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - A fleet made up of 94 yachts, including 22 international entrants, five 100-ft Maxis, seven former winners and the current race record holder, is arguably the strongest in recent race history. Running for the 69th uninterrupted year and sponsored by Rolex since 2002, the 2013 edition of the 628-nm race starts – as is tradition – on 26 December from Sydney Harbour.

'What an amazing line up we have this year, it’s a very exciting prospect for all of us,' comments Mark Richards, skipper of Bob Oatley’s 100-ft Maxi Wild Oats XI. Six-time line honours winner and current race record holder (1 day, 18 hours, 23 minutes and 12 seconds), Wild Oats XI is one of the race’s symbolic names and has undergone extensive structural improvements over the course of the past year in a bid to equal Morna’s (later Kurrewa IV) record of seven line honours victories. It will not be easy; she faces a stringent examination of her credentials with the emergence of a new rival.

Anthony Bell’s Perpetual Loyal is another 100-footer, and is expected to provide a stern test. 'It will be a tough battle with Wild Oats XI,' explained Bell, line honours winner in 2011 with his previous boat, 'we’re up against the best maxi racing team in the world – they’re like the Ferrari team of ocean racing.' Perpetual Loyal, the former Rambler 100, boasts vast speed potential and a talented crew including Australian Olympian Tom Slingsby.

'This will be my first Rolex Sydney Hobart and my first offshore ocean race. I haven’t been sick on a yacht before – only once when I was on a fishing boat – so I’m curious as to how I’ll fair!,' said Slingsby, ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year in 2010. 'The two boats are very different craft,' added Richards. 'Wild Oats is a long, narrow boat, Perpetual Loyal is very beamy and a very powerful boat. It’s going to come down to the conditions.'


Wild Oats XI and Perpetual Loyal know that focusing only on each other could have detrimental consequences, with the fleet comprising three other 100-ft yachts with similar ambitions of finishing first – Wild Thing, Zefiro and Ragamuffin 100. Skippered by Australian sailing legend Syd Fischer, 86 years young and preparing for his 45th Rolex Sydney Hobart, the latter will not lack experience. Tony Ellis will compete alongside Fischer for an incredible 41st time while taking part in his 47th ‘sail south’ to Hobart, Tasmania.

The fleet is peppered with former winners, both sailors and boats. 2012 was a fast boat edition with Wild Oats XI claiming the overall win on handicap and the famous Tattersall’s Cup. The limelight, as history proves, can be stolen by any boat in the fleet, professional or amateur-crewed. Recent winners include a vast range of yacht types – including the 47-ft Love & War in 2006; the 40-ft Two True in 2009 and the 60-ft Loki in 2011.

'As a kid it’s something you always dream of. Just doing the race is fantastic, but to be a winner is the ultimate in sailing for Australian blokes,' explained Geoff Boettcher who led the 51-ft Secret Men’s Business 3.5 to success in 2010. It is one of the seven former winners to participate in the 2013 race although will sail as under the guise Primitive Cool with John Newbold.

The last overseas entrant to win the race was American Roger Sturgeon’s 65-ft Rosebud, back in 2007. A statistic the large contingent of overseas entrants will seek to alter, in particular Karl Kwok from Hong Kong, who could become the first foreign owner to win the race twice.

Kwok last won the Rolex Sydney Hobart in 1997 and this year inaugurates his latest Beau Geste. Also seeking a place in history is Martin Power’s Bacardi, a yacht that will set a record for most Rolex Sydney Hobarts completed if she finishes for a 28th Event website

upffront 660x82Zhik Warehouse Sale 660x82North Technology - Southern Spars

Related Articles

Rolex Sydney Hobart- Raw footage from the ABC helicopter
Cruising Yacht Club of Australia presents a series of five videos taken from a helicopter in the last Rolex Sydney Hobar Cruising Yacht Club of Australia presents a series of five videos taken from a helicopter in the last Rolex Sydney Hobart Race. The race begand in light to moderate air, on the second day the breeze filled in giving fast downwind sailing conditions and on the third day the southerly gale hit, along with big swells and breaking seas.
Posted on 10 Mar 2014
Rolex Sydney Hobart - One of the most exciting editions on record
The 69th edition of the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race shaped up early to be one of the most amazing editions on record. The 69th edition of the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race shaped up early to be one of the most amazing editions on record. The 94-boat fleet featured five 100 foot maxis, three Volvo 70s, seven former race winners and a seriously competitive lineup across the fleet.
Posted on 7 Jan 2014
Rolex Sydney Hobart- America’s Cup heroes take on Sydney-Hobart
Iain Murray and Ian ‘Fresh’ Burns bested Tom Slingsby and Stan Honey for line honors in the Sydney-Hobart race. Iain Murray and Ian ‘Fresh’ Burns bested Tom Slingsby and Stan Honey for line honors in the Sydney-Hobart race. Murray and Burns, aboard Wild Oats X!, were first across the finishing line in Hobart, coming from behind to beat rookie Slingsby and Honey on Perpetual Loyal.
Posted on 4 Jan 2014
Rolex Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race - The final four
Rolex Sydney Hobart - Sailors’ loved-ones may need to block their ears as stories of survival come flooding in Rolex Sydney Hobart - Sailors’ loved-ones may need to block their ears as stories of survival come flooding in with the smallest yachts bringing up the rear of the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race fleet.
Posted on 1 Jan 2014
Rolex Sydney Hobart; Rounding Tasman Island -Got a Few Hours To Spare?
It’s hard to imagine how Hobart was ever discovered by sea, really. It’s hard to imagine how Hobart was ever discovered by sea, really. There are two dimensions of the city’s sea defences – neither has anything to do with the military - that have seemed to make Hobart an elusive chimera to many a seafarer over the decades and centuries.
Posted on 1 Jan 2014
Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - Bacardi to return for 70th edition
Rolex Sydney Hobart - The old and slow Bacardi already has sponsors clamoring to have their name on her heavy frame Rolex Sydney Hobart - She’s not your typical sailing billboard, yet the old and slow Bacardi already has sponsors clamoring to have their name on her heavy frame for next year’s 70th anniversary Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race.
Posted on 31 Dec 2013
Rolex Sydney Hobart - Making tracks to the finish line
With New Year’s Eve looming tonight, the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race fleet made tracks to the finish line in Hobart. With New Year’s Eve looming tonight, the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race fleet made tracks to the finish line in Hobart. By midday on December 31, only two yachts were still at sea. From a total of 94 race starters, 82 yachts have now finished in Hobart, and ten yachts had retired.
Posted on 31 Dec 2013
Rolex Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race wrap up video
The 2013 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race wrap up with Overall and Divisional winners confirmed. The 2013 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race wrap up with Overall and Divisional winners confirmed.
Posted on 31 Dec 2013
Rolex Sydney Hobart 2013 - Television coverage of the start
Rolex Sydney Hobart - Here in two parts is the Channel 7 coverage of the 69th race, courtesy of France's Daily Motion Rolex Sydney Hobart 2013 - Here in two parts is the Channel 7 coverage of the 69th race, courtesy of France's Daily Motion video network.
Posted on 31 Dec 2013
Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - And then there were four
In the CYCA’s Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race, at 8.00am this morning, four yachts were left at sea. In the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race, at 8.00am this morning, four yachts were left at sea and all four were expected to make it across the finish line and into Constitution Dock in time to ring in the New Year.
Posted on 31 Dec 2013