Please select your home edition
Edition
Zhik Warehouse Sale

Airlie Beach Race Week 2014 - Sports Boat fleet talk up Race Week

by Tracey Johnstone on 3 Jul 2014
The revamped Conquistador showed good form at the Sports Boat Winter Nationals 2014. Teri Dodds
The Conquistador warriors are preparing their Sports Boat Division battle plans ahead of the Vision Surveys 25th Airlie Beach Race Week being held from the eighth to 15th August 2014.

The team’s recent burst of performance at Mooloolaba’s Sports Boat Winter Nationals, where they finished third overall, has given them the impetuous to plan packing the boat up again for another road trip and head up from Sydney to Airlie Beach.

Boat manager Bruce Hollis reported this Conquistador team of ex-skiff sailors have not previously competed at Airlie Beach. 'I am really keen to do Airlie Beach,' Hollis said.

The boat however has raced at Airlie Beach when owner Peter Sorensen campaigned it in 2012 under the Middle Harbour Yacht Club flag.

Some six months ago Hollis and helmsman Norman Ryde took up leasing the boat from Sorensen. 'Basically, one day I was having a beer with Sorro and asked what was going on with Conquistador. They had changed the configuration of the boat and it wasn’t sailing well.

'He said it was sitting in a shed up at the back of the Hunter and if you want it, go pick it up. So we picked it up. Pete will get it back later,' Hollis added.

Once in the hands of Hollis and Rydge the boat was rebuilt and made into what Hollis describes as 'more of a conventional boat'. They have retained the rotating mast and the rudder which slings under the boat rather than off the stern.

Since returning from Mooloolaba the boat has gone back into the shed to get more work done on it to achieve better performance and a better SMS rating.

Another Sydney Sports Boat planning to return to Airlie Beach Race Week this year is Ray Carless’s Junior. They had a super regatta last year finishing in third place.

'The racing is very good up there on the bay. I do quite like blue sky and warm water at this time of year,' Carless said.

His crew this will be his wife Jill, and one other. It’s a happy team where the husband and wife, while not always quiet, enjoy sharing the competition experience. Jill Carless jokes she takes instruction from Ray. as she trims the main.

Carless has come from many years of owning keel boats. The attraction of the Sports Boat has been the smaller number of crew, the ease of organisation of a smaller boat and the ability of putting the boat on the trailer and heading north for another year of fun at Airlie Beach. 'It’s fast and fun as well,' Carless said.


Brisbane’s Jason Ruckert will be returning with Mister Magoo. He has been competing in the Airlie Beach Race Week since 2004, missing only one along the way.

'The first one we did was when the Sports Boats had their national titles up there. We came second in that on a boat called So What. The year after we had Gone Troppo and came second again. I have been in a Thompson 7 since.

'I haven’t won it yet. I have come second three times on three different boats and won it once as a crew on another Thompson 7.

'We just need light winds like last year. The same or lighter again would suit us perfectly,' he added.

Perhaps this year will be Ruckert’s winning year.

All details on this year’s Vision Surveys Airlie Beach Race Week is here. Entries close Friday 1st August 2014.

Wildwind 2016 660x82Bakewell-White Yacht DesignT Clewring AC72

Related Articles

Debriefing the 2016 Rio Olympics—Sailing news North America and beyond
Editorial Editorial
Posted on 23 Aug
The Clipper Race turns 20!
Throughout the race, tales of crew celebrating birthdays on board filter back and they are always a special occasion Throughout the race, tales of Clipper Race crew celebrating their birthdays on board filter back and they are always a special occasion, likely to remain a completely unique event in their lifetime.
Posted on 23 Aug
A magnificent fleet gathers in Cowes for Etchells World Championship
58 teams from all over the world have entered the championship, hosted by the Royal London Yacht Club. Twenty teams are from Great Britain and a dozen each from Australia and the United States of America. Four entries are from Hong Kong and as far afield as: Bermuda, Ireland, New Zealand, Portugal, Singapore, and the United Arab Emirates.
Posted on 22 Aug
FAST40+ Class to be the first to have honour of racing for One Ton Cup
14 FAST40+ racing yachts are expected, flying the flags of England, Germany, Ireland, Scotland, South Africa and the USA 14 high performance FAST40+ racing yachts are expected for the One Ton Cup, flying the flags of England, Germany, Ireland, Scotland, South Africa and the United States of America. The crew, of which only five can be professionals, come from countries all over the world.
Posted on 22 Aug
Noroton Yacht Club dominates Hinman Trophy Team Race
Sailors often say it’s the little things that make the difference between winning and lose. 2016 Hinman Trophy Team Race - Sailors often say it’s the little things that make the difference between winning and lose. This was the case for Noroton Yacht Club as they won the Invitational Team Race Regatta for the Commodore George R. Hinman Masters Trophy for the second straight year, though maybe not in the way you’d expect.
Posted on 22 Aug
Drama Queen - Goransson wins Melges 32 National Championship
Richard Goransson and his Inga from Sweden team have claimed the 2016 US Melges 32 National Championship 2016 US Melges 32 National Championship - After a weekend of challenging, moderate conditions in Newport, RI, Richard Goransson and his Inga from Sweden team have claimed the 2016 US Melges 32 National Championship hosted by Sail Newport. Capping a weekend full of tight racing with lead changes around the track, it was fitting that the final race had three teams fighting for the regatta win
Posted on 22 Aug
Audi Hamilton Island Race Week 2016 - Day 1 Video
Day 1 of Audi Hamilton Race Week 2016 provided the first opportunity for Wild Oats XI and Scallywag to go head-to-head Day 1 of Audi Hamilton Race Week 2016 provided the first opportunity for Wild Oats XI and Scallywag to go head-to-head on an inshore race course. The two boats shadowed each other in the pre-race manoeuvres prior to the start of a race to Lindeman Island and back, starting in Dent Passage. Both boats made a fine spectacle as they reached to the northern tip of Dent Island before heading upwind
Posted on 21 Aug
Reading Australia’s Rio 2016 Sailing Report Card
Pre-event, Australian Sailing officials predicted there would be between three and five medals at Rio 2016. Pre-event, Australian Sailing officials predicted there would be between three and five medals at Rio 2016. So Tom Burton's Gold in the Laser, and then Silver for the 470 Men’s sailors, Matt Belcher and Will Ryan, London 49er Gold Medallists Nathan Outteridge and Iain Jensen, and then lastly Nacra 17 first time campaigners, Jason Waterhouse and Lisa Darmanin, was a good result.
Posted on 21 Aug
2016 U.S. National Championship - Argo advance
The Melges 32 fleet at the 2016 U.S. National Championship was greeted with a lumpy, streaky race course 2016 U.S. National Championship - As the breeze remained in the ESE direction overnight and began bucking an outgoing tide in the morning hours, the Melges 32 fleet at the 2016 U.S. National Championship hosted by Sail Newport was greeted with a lumpy, streaky race course, rewarding those teams that started clean and minimized maneuvers.
Posted on 21 Aug
2016 Melges 32 Nationals - A daily dose of Vitamina
The 2016 Melges 32 Nationals hosted by Sail Newport began with a whimper as racing was postponed for a couple of hours The 2016 Melges 32 Nationals hosted by Sail Newport began with a whimper as racing was postponed for a couple of hours allowing the northerly drainage breeze to give way to the impending northerly sea breeze.
Posted on 20 Aug