sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Video Gallery Photo Gallery
Sail-World.com : Rolex Sydney to Hobart - Wild Oats XI crew encouraged by final trial
Rolex Sydney to Hobart - Wild Oats XI crew encouraged by final trial


'On the pace: Rolex Sydney Hobart Race record holder, Wild Oats XI, shows an impressive turn of speed in Bass Strait. - Rolex Sydney to Hobart 2013'    Rolex/ Carlo Borlenghi©    Click Here to view large photo

For this week’s Rolex Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race while the weather outlook is ‘messy’, according to yachting meteorologist Roger ‘Clouds’ Badham, the skipper of Bob Oatley’s race record holder – the 100ft supermaxi, Wild Oats XI – couldn’t be happier on two fronts.

Mark ‘Ricko’ Richards, who has skippered the sleek silver sloop in all eight of her Hobart race starts, likes what he sees in Badham’s current forecast for the 628-nautical-mile race, which starts on Boxing Day. And, bringing added pleasure to preparations is the knowledge that Wild Oats XI’s final pre-race hit-out confirmed she is sailing faster than ever.

'That doesn’t necessarily mean we will be first to Hobart,' Richards was quick to point out. 'We know all too well that there’s an element of luck needed in this race, especially when it comes to the weather. But, it is good to know that Wild Oats XI is fast.

'When you go into a Hobart race you need the best possible ammunition, and I think we have got it. The new mast is making a big difference to our speed, and we also now know that when the new hydrofoil wing is deployed and comes into its zone it improves our downwind speed.

Richards confirmed that the new low-windage mast, which is 200 kilos lighter and considerably stiffer than the one it replaced, has contributed significantly to the improvement in speed. For example, Wild Oats XI is now sailing two knots faster upwind than when she was launched in 2005 – a considerable gain for any yacht this size.

The yacht is the most successful in the 69-year history of the classic, having scored six line honours, two victories on handicap and two race record times.

Wild Oats XI’s final pre-race trial was staged over four hours yesterday in a 20-30 knot southerly wind and lumpy seas off Sydney Heads. New sails were tested and many of the manoeuvres the crew can expect to be confronted by during the race were executed.

With the yacht now 100 per cent ready, the principal members of the highly talented afterguard are concentrating on the race weather forecast. This group includes Richards, tactician Iain Murray, strategist Ian ‘Fresh’ Burns, and navigator Tom Addis. Both Murray and Burns have just returned from San Francisco where they played prominent roles in the America’s Cup regatta.

Badham’s current forecast sees him saying: 'The closer we get [to the start], the more detail is added and more complex and messy the weather pattern looks over Bass Strait and the Tasmanian coast on Day 2 and Day 3.' He is not, however, discounting the chance that the first yacht home could finish inside the race record time of 1 day, 18 hours, 23 minutes, 12 seconds set by Wild Oats XI last year.

'The forecast we are seeing now will suit us, but the race is going to be unbelievably tricky tactically – a huge mental challenge,' Richards said. 'There is every chance that the leading group will compress on at least one occasion.'

Wild Oats XI’s crew is well mindful of what can happen in such conditions. In the 2011 Rolex Sydney Hobart Race they held a comfortable lead approaching Tasman Island, 44 miles from the finish. Then the wind evaporated and they stopped. This provided the opportunity for the crew of Investec Loyal (Anthony Bell) to plot a course that saw them sail past the leader and claim line honours by just three minutes and 12 seconds.

It was a disappointing loss for the Wild Oats XI team, one that drove home an important point to all competitors: if, in a perfect world, Wild Oats XI had been just one second a mile faster from start to finish, she could have been first to finish.

The Rolex Sydney Hobart race starts on Sydney Harbour at 1pm on Boxing Day.


by Rob Mundle

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=117796

10:47 AM Sun 22 Dec 2013GMT


Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.

Click for further information on
2013 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race

Related News Stories:

22 Dec 2013  Video Coverage of 2012 Sydney to Hobart race
22 Dec 2013  Sailing legend prepares for thrill of Rolex Sydney Hobart chase
22 Dec 2013  From Concept to Start Line: Winning the Rolex Sydney Hobart
22 Dec 2013  Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - Record donation to worthy competitor
22 Dec 2013  Rolex Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race - Taylor’s quest for the Cup
21 Dec 2013  Rolex Sydney to Hobart - Wild Oats XI receives clean bill of health
20 Dec 2013  Rolex Sydney to Hobart - Long range weather forecast favours big boats
20 Dec 2013  Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - Zefiro seeks full blooded southerly
19 Dec 2013  Rolex Sydney to Hobart - Patrice performs like a rocket ship
18 Dec 2013  Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - Downwind drag race for Wild Oats XI
MORE STORIES ...






News - USA and the World







HUD Vision: An interview with Afterguard Marine’s Alex Moret by David Schmidt, Sail-World USA Editor, Seattle














America's Cup: Expected de Ridder penalty should be reduced by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.com/nz, Auckland, NZ


















Congressional Cup - Victory for Taylor Canfield and crew by Rich Roberts (As Amended by ISAF),




2014 Halifax – Saint-Pierre Ocean Race by Patricia Nelder, Nova Scotia














Image Gallery: Stratis SL33 flies on the Waitemata by Richard Gladwell,Sail-world.com/nz,


Audi Melges 20- Sperry Topsider Charleston Race Week - Light final day by International Audi Melges 20 Class Association,








Int 14 World Championships 2015 launch new event website
International Optimist Regatta Clinic and Team Race - Register now!
Congressional Cup: World top rankers finish that way in Long Beach
Sperry Top-Sider Charleston Race Week Day 3 finale
America's Cup: Gino Morrelli outlines the new AC62 design
Doyle Sails New Zealand signs Andrew Brown as One Design Manager
America's Cup: Dean Barker's Blog - A sail with the Duke and Duchess
29er World Youth Sailing Week Easter regatta - Day 1 and 2 overall
C Thomas Clagett Jr Memorial Clinic/Regatta - Entries start to roll in
50th Congressional Cup: See the delayed coverage and media conferences
Clipper Race 10 Day 27: Closing stages - Qingdao to San Francisco
Canfield, Williams, Bruni, Swinton in Congressional Cup final four
Sperry Top-Sider Charleston Race Week - Day 2
Audi Melges 20 Charleston Race Week - Perfect conditions in Charleston
Oyster Regatta Antigua - Full on ocean conditions for day 3
PWA World Tour - A taste of things to come at La Torche + Video
Women's International Match Racing Series kicks off in June
Melges 32 Audi Tron Sailing Series - Action shots by Max Ranchi
Clipper Round the World Yacht Race - Frustrating conditions
Man rescued after falling overboard in Pacific taken to hospital
Sperry Top-Sider Charleston Race Week 2014 - Youth leading Melges 20   
Congressional Cup - Canfield leads toward Congressional Cup sailoffs   
Sperry Top-Sider Charleston Race Week 2014 - Perfection for Day 1   
America's Cup: Coutts claims ISAF Jury on a crusade, backs Kiwi report   
Clipper Round the World Yacht Race - Will light winds hamper progress?   
Les Voiles de St. Barth - Preparing to rock Saint Barthélemy waters   
Clipper Round the World Race - OneDLL and Qingdao now in San Francisco   
America's Cup: Emirates Team NZ up against funding hurdle for year   
Melges 32 Sailing Series Napoli - Day 1 images by Stefano Gattini   
50th Congressional Cup: View the Live racing here   
Melges 32 Sailing Series - Napoli action shots by Max Ranchi   
Volvo Ocean Race - Team Alvimedica launch new boat   
Emirates Team NZ: Royals duke it out on the Waitemata   
2014 Charleston Race Week - Thousands of sailors descend on Charleston   
The Congressional Cup 2014 - Williams hangs on with a classy crowd   
50th Congressional Cup: View the Live racing here   
RORC Transatlantic Race - Notice of Race now available   
Oyster Regatta Antigua - Sunshine and smiles on day 2   
Rolex China Sea Race on the horizon   
What can a boat name tell you about the person behind the helm?   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XL WAS US