Please select your home edition
Edition
Zhik Warehouse Sale

Club Marine Pittwater & Coffs Regatta bar raised by IRC heavyweights

by Lisa Ratcliff on 13 Dec 2012
2012 Pittwater to Coffs race IRC handicap winner Exile, a DK46 - photo by Damian Devine - 2013 Club Marine Pittwater & Coffs Harbour Regatta Damian Devine
The battle for IRC honours in the Club Marine Pittwater & Coffs Harbour Regatta has moved into a different sphere with a number of well-known grand prix entries raising the handicap bar for the popular summer ocean race, hosted by the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club.

While the largest boat usually sets the fastest time, the real battle among sailors playing on a level field is for the prized handicap trophy.

Darryl Hodgkinson’s Beneteau 45, Victoire, most recently named Class 2 Audi IRC Australian Champion and also the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s current Blue Water Pointscore Champion, last took part in the 226 nautical miler in 2005 with his Sydney 38.

'We enjoyed it in 2005 and in 2013 it will be something new for Victoire,' said the Sydney based plastic surgeon. 'This year we wanted to give the Hobart race a break, everyone’s a bit tired, but we wanted to keep the boat going.

Some of my crew will race south then fly back up and join us for the start on January 2.

'I see the format has changed a bit, now it’s a long race followed by four short races, which is probably easier. What hasn’t changed is that Victoire’s old adversary, Exile, will be sailing against us. It will be a good match up.'

Rob Reynold’s DK 46 Exile is the defending Pittwater & Coffs Harbour Regatta IRC champion.

On the likes of Bill Wild’s Queensland RP55 Wedgetail appearing on the starters list, Hodgkinson says 'It’s nice to see a boat of that ilk taken out of mothballs, it adds a lot of interest'.

Now based on the Gold Coast, Wild’s work pile has kept him buried for the past 15 months and his prized Wedgetail, formerly Geoff Ross’ Yendys, idle.

Wedgetail’s crew is being assembled this week, the owner/skipper confirming that North Sails’ Michael Coxon will join a majority Queensland team as tactician and helmsman.

'If we get nor’easters we’ll be pretty competitive, if it’s off the breeze the TP Ragamuffin will be hard to beat,' admits Wild, who last raced in the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club’s premier event in early 2000.

'I had a couple of good placings with my Mumm 36 back in the dark ages, but I’ve never won it.'

Wild will use the Club Marine Pittwater to Coffs ocean race to deliver his boat north to Brisbane where he will plans to race more regularly.

At 85, the doyen of Australian ocean racing, Syd Fischer, will join the throng of young professional sailors and those still with an appetite to satiate after the 628 nautical mile Rolex Sydney Hobart returning to Sydney for the 1pm start of the Club Marine Pittwater to Coffs Harbour Race on January 2.

Fischer will campaign his 100 foot super maxi Ragamuffin Loyal in the Sydney Hobart and have his TP52, Ragamuffin, ready and waiting back in Sydney for the first bluewater race of the New Year.

'Some of the crew will bring the 100 footer back and some will fly back and race on the TP. We’ll have a pretty good crew going north,' Fischer assures.

When asked what has motivated him to make a return to the northern sprint race he replied in earnest, 'Something to do'.

Fischer needs a significant pool of seasoned offshore sailors to operate his expanding fleet of yachts and the northern assault will give those who missed out on the cutthroat crew selection for Hobart an opportunity to feel part of the swelling Ragamuffin family.

'Everything is so bloody heavy on the 100 footer, it’s a different dimension. We’ll take some of the blokes to Coffs who missed out on the maxi ride to Hobart.'

With a former Ragamuffin, Fischer scored the double in the 1996 Pittwater Coffs, line honours and the IMS handicap trophy, and it’s feasible the octogenarian’s famous moniker will again be added to the winner’s list.

The race is appealing to a new audience with 14 of the 38 boats entered so far first time entrants and skippers like Hodgkinson, Wild and Fischer making a comeback after an extended break.

The organising club, the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club, has extended the deadline for entries to 5pm this Friday, December 14.

The 2013 Club Marine Pittwater & Coffs Harbour Regatta Notice of Race is available from the event website at www.pittwatertocoffs.com.au

Online entry via Top Yacht Software

For race enquiries and documentation please contact the RPAYC Sailing Office on (02) 9998 3771 or yachting@rpayc.com.au
Southern Spars - 100Zhik ZKG 660x82T Clewring J-class

Related Articles

Freides defends leadership at Melges 20 World Championship
The one and only race that was able to take place at the 2016 Melges 20 World Championship was a difficult one at best 2016 Melges 20 World Championship - The one and only race that was able to take place at the 2016 Melges 20 World Championship hosted by Marina di Scarlino/Club Nautico Scarlino was a difficult one at best, however managed to present some nice new faces at the front of the fleet.
Posted today at 2:51 am
Clipper Round the World Yacht Race - Crew catch up - Meet Dhruv Boruah
After crew members have completed their global ocean adventure, some go back to their previous lives and occupations After crew members have completed their global ocean adventure, some go back to their previous lives and occupations, some decide on a future in the marine industry, some take time out to assess their next move in life and others seek their next challenge.
Posted on 27 Aug
Changing of the Guard at Melges 20 Worlds, Freides takes over
The second day of racing at the 2016 Melges 20 World Championship featured two races under shifty conditions 2016 Melges 20 World Championship - The second day of racing at the 2016 Melges 20 World Championship hosted by Marina di Scarlino/Club Nautico Scarlino featured two races under shifty conditions, shaking up the standings and making Drew Freides' Pacific Yankee the new leader with a one point advantage over Michael Illbruck on Pinta now seated in second place.
Posted on 27 Aug
Vendée Globe – Yann Eliès and his team relaunch 60-ft IMOCA in Lorient
Yann is now on the final stretch before the event and will be taking part in the three training courses. Yann is now on the final stretch before the event and will be taking part in the three training courses organised at the Finistère Ocean Racing Centre in Port-la-Forêt (Brittany). He will also take part in the Azimut Trophy. Yann Eliès tells us about the work that has been done and what lies ahead in the final part of his preparation.
Posted on 26 Aug
Vendée Globe – A long trip between France and Iceland for Heerema
After completing two solo transatlantic crossings in the spring, Pieter Heerema is currently on his third major trip. After completing two solo transatlantic crossings in the spring, Pieter Heerema is currently on his third major trip. Thanks to this voyage from France to Iceland and back, the Dutch skipper is finding out more about No Way Back, the new generation IMOCA on which he will line up on 6th November
Posted on 26 Aug
Phoenix returns and Cayard is back for the TP52 World Championships
Richard Cohen will compete at the championships in Mahón, Menorca, with Phoenix, which will be skippered by Paul Cayard. The carefully assembled team includes a core group of sailors who have many years of experience in the class, but Cayard cautions that their initial objective is to learn and improve together in line with their long term goal, to be competitive on the 2017 52 Super Series.
Posted on 26 Aug
Michael Marshall triumphs at J/22 World Championship
With a second place finish in Thursday’s only race, Mike Marshall, Todd Hiller and Luke Lawrence are the champions. Heading into the 10th and final race, Marshall and Chris Doyle were tied on points at 30. As the 41 teams arrived at CORK in the morning, the after effects of an overnight storm left breeze in the mid-20s, so the Race Committee postponed on shore.
Posted on 25 Aug
Best pictures of the first 4 Acts of the Extreme Sailing Series™
An influx of fresh talent have all added to the hype, but the greatest evolution is the replacement of the Extreme 40. An influx of fresh talent, new venues and a revised race format have all added to the hype, but the greatest evolution is the replacement of the Extreme 40 by a smaller, faster catamaran: the flying GC32.
Posted on 25 Aug
Return to Russia for the Extreme Sailing Series™
Joining the fleet as the season heads into its second half is Gazprom Team Russia, led by WMRT champion, Phil Robertson. With one week to go, the fleet returns to St Petersburg for the fifth Act of the season, presented by SAP, 35 of the world’s best sailors are getting their heads in the game and preparing for the one of the trickiest venues of the season so far.
Posted on 25 Aug
Marshall and Doyle tied on points at J/22 World Championship
By way of a victory in Wednesday’s third race, Mike Marshall, Todd Hiller and Luke Lawrence are tied at 30 points By way of a victory in Wednesday’s third race, Mike Marshall, Todd Hiller and Luke Lawrence are tied at 30 points with Chris Doyle, Will Harris and Adam Burns. Jeff Todd is still in the hunt in third place with 35 points.
Posted on 24 Aug