Please select your home edition
Edition
Mackay Boats

Heavy weather batters Solo Tasman fleet

by Lindsay Wright on 6 Apr 2010
Trish Lewis 2010 Trans Tasman Yacht Race Lindsay Wright

Four metre seas and gale force winds yesterday pounded the 12 skippers sailing the Fitzroy Yachts sponsored solo Tasman challenge yacht race to Mooloolaba.

Bruce Arms, leading the fleet in Big Wave Rider reported that he was down to four reefs in the mainsail and had no other sail area up, to help his catamaran cope with the conditions, but last night he had hoisted a reefed jib and was going well in 30kts SSW winds.

Even so he is maintaining a speed of 10 knots and, if he continues to do so, should break the race record by about six hours. Yesterday he reported speeds of over 21 knots as he surfed before the brisk south easterly breezes, but last night he said it was 'wet and wild out here.'

Arms has pulled out a lead of about 185km on the rest of the fleet but has hard charging Auckland skipper Ian Lillie chasing him up in Island Girl. Lillie was first singlehanded monohull home in the 2007 race and proved he was tough enough to keep driving the Farr 1220 hard in conditions that had others reducing sail.

His closest competition is the race grandfather, Australian skipper Rick Morgan (65), sailing his high tech three year old composite sloop Dream Lover. Morgan made an early break north from the fleet, no doubt hoping to take advantage of the northerly winds predicted for later on in the race and last night he was charging along at close to 10 knots in the rough conditions.

Further back in the fleet, Steven Arms, was starting to get into his stride. He was expected to sail a prudent race in the brand new 10.6m catamaran, Nitro, but he may be about to prove the punters wrong and last night had it cranked up to 11.5 knots despite the rough conditions.

Matt Paulin, skipper of island Time, arrived at Port Taranaki for the start claiming that he was using the race as the start of a Pacific cruise and his boat was too heavy to do well. After talking to other race skippers however, he was observed unloading extra anchor chain and other heavy items and this may have paid off. Last night he was just over 1852km from Mooloolaba and maintaining a slim lead over Alan Yardley in Mephisto.

Jennifer Fitzgibbon was buried in the middle of the fleet in Soothsayer and the next day or so will be a test for the 32 year old Mooloolaba local. The 10.6m Sayers design doesn’t have a furling headsail and she needs to go on the foredeck for every sail change.

Wishbone, the baby of the fleet at 7.6m, is also handling the rough conditions well and has averaged 5.8 knots since the start at New Plymouth on Sunday. The dimunitive boat is immaculately prepared and this may make up for Lewis’s lack of offshore experience.

Another 185km back Inglewood engineer Blondie Chamberlain in An Cala had also picked up the pace and was sailing at 5.9 kts. An Cala is the only ketch in the race and is expected to thrive in the rough.

Rhys Boulton, from Lyttelton, in his heavy, steel Ganley Chevron is bring up the rear of the fleet. 'Well,' he said resignedly last night, 'if anyone gets in trouble, I’ll be back here to help out.' Further information is available at: www.solo-tasman.org.nz

Ancasta Ker 33 660x82Zhik Isotak Ocean 660x82Mackay Boats

Related Articles

America's Cup - Oracle picks up some bow protection for docking
Bangin' the Corner team talk Jimmy and the boys on Oracle Team USA through the process of getting some bow protection The Bangin' the Corner team talk Jimmy and the boys on Oracle Team USA through the process of getting some bow protection for their new AC50, before they dock after a long day on the Great Sound, and don't dock like Ben did.
Posted on 25 Mar
Bureau Vallée 2 back in the water in Brittany
The former Banque Populaire VIII aboard which Armel Le Cléac’h won the last Vendée Globe was put back in the water The former Banque Populaire VIII aboard which Armel Le Cléac’h won the last Vendée Globe was put back in the water on Friday in Lorient (Brittany), with her new decoration in the colours of Bureau Vallée.
Posted on 25 Mar
America's Cup - Bermuda practice racing videos March 24, 2017
MyislandhomeBDA is videoing the Practice racing and training with the five teams in Bermuda MyislandhomeBDA is videoing the Practice racing and training with the five teams who are based in the venue for the 2017 America's Cup. Here's the set from March 24,2017
Posted on 25 Mar
America's Cup - Coutts hits back at critics over Protocol change
Russell Coutts, has responded to criticism over the recent changes to the 35th America's Cup Protocol Five times America's Cup winner and CEO of the America's Cup Events Authority, Russell Coutts, has responded to criticism over the recent changes to the 35th America's Cup Protocol, allowing testing and racing between Challengers and the Defender in Bermuda ahead of the start of the Qualifiers.
Posted on 24 Mar
America's Cup - Groupama Team France's AC50 sailing in Bermuda - Video
Groupama Team France has had her first sail in Bermuda with the AC50 looking impressive in the video shot by the team. Groupama Team France has had her first sail in Bermuda with the AC50 looking impressive in the video shot by the team.
Posted on 24 Mar
America's Cup - Images of Emirates Team NZ flypast Devonport
Image gallery shot as Emirates Team New Zealand returned in the late afternoon from another four hour race session Image gallery shot as Emirates Team New Zealand returned in the late afternoon from another four hour race training session on the Waitemata harbour. Our cameras were on Devonport Wharf to catch the sequence - and for the first time a wide angle lens had to be used.
Posted on 23 Mar
America's Cup – Get to know Iain Murray and the ACRM
He has enjoyed a long and illustrious career since he first started sailing at the age of nine in his native Sydney. Throughout its 166 year history the rivalries between owners, skippers, crews, yacht clubs, fans and nations have been some of the most intriguing facets of the competition for the world’s oldest sporting trophy.
Posted on 23 Mar
America's Cup - Images of Emirates Team NZ two-up on the Waitemata
Emirates Team NZ were sailing on the Waitemata yesterday with just a couple of weeks left Emirates Team NZ were sailing on the Waitemata yesterday with just a couple of weeks left before they head for Bermuda and the 35th America's Cup. The cycle-grinders were two per side for the trip down the harbour making the transitions from gybe to gybe very interesting - and almost imperceptible.
Posted on 23 Mar
America's Cup - Late Protocol change further stacks deck against Kiwis
Five America's Cup teams have dealt themselves a new hand with a new Protocol Change published three days ago. Five America's Cup teams have dealt themselves a new hand with a new Protocol Change published three days ago. On the face of it, the change - to allow 23 days training against each other repairs an omission by the Commissioner for the America's Cup. But it is the timing of the move that is surprising
Posted on 22 Mar
Vestas 11th Hour Racing launch Volvo Ocean Race campaign
Vestas are returning for a second edition, after launching their 2017-18 campaign in partnership with 11th Hour Racing Vestas 11th Hour Racing will be led by the American duo of Charlie Enright and Mark Towill. The team are the fourth to announce for the upcoming edition, which begins on 22 October, and they will use the race to promote a sustainability message around the world.
Posted on 21 Mar