Please select your home edition
Edition
SailX 728x90

Rolex Sydney Hobart; Don't Try This At Home Folks!

by Crosbie Lorimer on 31 Dec 2013
David ’’Ollie’’ Oliver (centre) holding the Tattersall’s Cup Crosbie Lorimer http://www.crosbielorimer.com
David 'Ollie' Oliver is the pitman aboard Victoire, the yacht having been announced as the overall winner of this year’s race and now the holder of the Tattersall’s Cup.

For Ollie this was a particularly sweet victory that finally exorcised the demons that have plagued him since missing out on Secret Men’s Business 3.5’s victory in 2010, through injury.


Not that this victory came easily for Victoire which experienced a heart stopping drama just south of Bass Strait; an event which demonstrates that good crew work can not only turn a dangerous situation into a swift recovery, but it can lead to the creation of a whole new manoeuvre.

Victoire was speeding south at 17 knots under spinnaker in 25 knots of northeasterly, just south of Bass Strait, when she was caught by a wave and swung into a Chinese Gybe.

Ollie takes up the story from here,

'I’ve had some good crashes in my time, but this one was the best ever.'

'We Chinese Gybed and we had the canting keel basically locked in (on the wrong side, holding the boat over) and so we had the boat vertical; we had two guys pinned down in the corner at the stern (one of whom was skipper Daryl Hodgkinson) and the only way up was to climb up the mainsheet traveller. So it was a full vertical; we had the boat over for about three or four minutes, that was pretty hairy.'

Asked how they recovered this position Ollie explains the new manoeuvre.

'It actually went like clockwork as we had a sail up again with ten minutes; but we had two guys down in the water, underwater, pinned down in the corner; we basically blew the tack (the spinnaker tack at the bowsprit), smoked the halyard, put the keel back in its position and we came out on the other gybe. We had the new spinnaker up in about ten minutes.'

'So it was a Crash - Chinese Gybe - Peel'!

'I don’t know how we did it, it should have been half an hour or an hour of damage and yet we managed to come out of it sailing 13 knots. It was great; we just dug in, it was Armageddon!'

'We were blessed, we should have lost the rig, we should have lost everything, in the end we came out of it beautifully and even with no kite up we were still doing 13 knots.'

'I don’t know how we did it, honestly. If it was night time it would probably have been a different story, we might have been in trouble.'

Creative and innovative as this new manoeuvre evidently was, it’s hard to imagine anyone wanting to practice it!
Newport Boat Show 2016 660x82T Clewring J-classNaiad/Oracle Supplier

Related Articles

Comanche - On board report - 175nm ahead of trans-Atlantic record pace
Comanche is currently 1?76? miles ahead of the record (correct at 09.45 BST) Sunday July 24, 2016 Update from Jim Clark and Kristy Hinze-Clark's supermaxi Comanche on Sunday 24th July, 2016 as she chases the Trans-Atlantic monohull record Comanche is currently 1?76? miles ahead of the record (correct at 09.45 BST). Visit the Yellow Brick tracker for latest position updates
Posted today at 12:10 pm
Den Helder Northern Seas Challenge - Race 13 arrivals complete
Den Helder Northern Seas Challenge, arrivals are now complete following arrival of IchorCoal at 2300 local time As Visit Seattle, PSP Logistics and Da Nang – Viet Nam celebrated their podium finishes in race 13, the Den Helder Northern Seas Challenge, arrivals are now complete following the arrival of IchorCoal at 2300 local time this evening.
Posted today at 7:48 am
Vic-Maui Yacht Race - Kraken one, Darby no score
In real race, not artificial ones that sailboats make up between themselves, Kraken beat Mother Nature’s child – Darby 2016 Vic-Maui Yacht Race - In a real race, not the artificial ones that sailboats make up between themselves, Kraken has beat Mother Nature’s child – Darby. Mark and Annette Malacek’s Beneteau First 40.7 from West Vancouver Yacht Club crossed the finish line around 1:45 pm local time. It was great relief to the many family and fans that greeted Kraken's arrival.
Posted today at 7:20 am
Pacific Cup - Friday finishers action-shots by Lauren Easley
Photographer Lauren Easley was in air at 2016 Pacific Cup and provided this gallery of images from Friday action. Photographer Lauren Easley was in air at finish of the Pacific Cup raced from San Francisco to Honolulu and provided this gallery of images from Friday action.
Posted today at 6:38 am
France Blue, Brewin Dolphin Commodores' Cup favourite?
Calling form on Brewin Dolphin Commodores' Cup is hard, as for team to be successful all three of its boats must perform Calling form on the Brewin Dolphin Commodores' Cup is hard, as for a team to be successful, all three of its boats must perform. This, plus the event's week-long duration and diverse race format, make the Royal Ocean Racing Club's biennial championship for Corinthian crews one of the pinnacle racing events internationally held under a rating rule.
Posted today at 5:24 am
ORC Worlds - Three new ORC World Champions crowned in Copenhagen
A light southerly arose just in time to get one last race in for all three classes on concluding day of 2016 ORC Worlds 2016 ORC Worlds - After an initial delay this morning due to no wind that threatened to keep everyone ashore like yesterday, a light southerly arose just in time to get one last race in for all three classes on the concluding day of the 2016 ORC World Championship, hosted by the Royal Danish YC and Egaa Sailing Club.
Posted today at 4:45 am
Transat Québec Saint-Malo – Class40s sail into Saint-Malo
Twelve of the nineteen Class40s racing in the ninth edition of the Transat Québec Saint-Malo 2016 Transat Québec Saint-Malo - Twelve of the nineteen Class40s racing in the ninth edition of the Transat Québec Saint-Malo presented in collaboration with the City of Lévis are now safely moored at the Quai Duguay-Trouin wharf in Saint-Malo at the foot of the ramparts as the sun prepares to go down over the Corsair City.
Posted today at 3:09 am
America's Cup World Series Portsmouth – Standing room only.
There are no half measures where English weather is concerned. There are no half measures where English weather is concerned. Happily, that means that when it’s good it very, very good. Blue skies, sunshine, 23 deg C, clean air, and the whole place looks as if has put on a party frock and got lit up. Wonderful.
Posted on 23 Jul
America’s Cup World Series – More Day 1 images by Carlo Borlenghi
Photographer Carlo Borlenghi has provided this gallery of images from the first day of racing Photographer Carlo Borlenghi has provided this gallery of images from the first day of racing
Posted on 23 Jul
America’s Cup World Series – Race Day 1 images by Carlo Borlenghi
Photographer Carlo Borlenghi has provided this gallery of images from the first day of racing in Portsmouth Photographer Carlo Borlenghi has provided this gallery of images from the first day of racing in Portsmouth
Posted on 23 Jul