Please select your home edition
Edition
SailX 728x90

Southern Cross Cup – a new TP52 game begins

by John Curnow on 5 Feb 2013
Once around the top mark, it is all action stations on board Hooligan. - TP52 Southern Cross Cup John Curnow ©
From Friday, February 8, something not quite seen in Australia before will take place. It is a new Grand Prix if you will, and fittingly the first round of the inaugural TP52 Southern Cross Cup is to take place in the home of the Formula One GP, Melbourne.

There are to be eight 52-footers in the grand challenge. Seven of them are the famed Transpac 52s (TP52) and then there is one invited vessel, Rob Date’s Reichel-Pugh penned, Scarlet Runner. This particular craft shares her hull design with the TP, Artemis, which is another vessel of the class that so famously charges around the waters near some of the Mediterranean’s most glamorous ports.


Of particular note, is the fact that the TP52 Southern Cross Cup has been designed to offer something to all owners of 52foot vessels, no matter which generation of TP52 they may be, or if they actually sit outside the class. Michael Martin’s Frantic is the oldest TP in the fleet, with CougarII next, then Calm, with Scarlet Runner and Beau Geste about the same vintage. Newest of them all are the three that finished first, second and third at the recent Audi IRC Australian Championships in Geelong. In that order, they are Shogun V, Hooligan and Calm 2.


Unlike the cars, the Southern Cross Cup is not all about being a drag or arms race. Actually, there have been some significant aspects incorporated into the design of series to ensure that no matter who you are, you are racing for a prize. The first of these is that there will be an adjustment to your IRC rating to account for the age of the vessel.
Specifically, a 2007 vessel will receive a 0.004 bonus, but something from back in 2001 will receive a whole 0.010, with each year receiving the increments in between those numbers. This will go a long way to making it a real challenge amongst the crews.


Now yes there have been massive improvements in primarily the uphill speed of the TPs, as time has gone on. The likes of Shogun, Calm 2 and Hooligan will do nine and half knots to windward. This is amazing when you consider the 100foot supermaxis do 13.5kn in the same direction, at best. Off the breeze, the differential between generations of TP is still there, but perhaps not quite as considerable. It is with this in mind that the Race Officer can run a downwind start, which is something they could offer the fleet at say under 15knots of true wind. This alone will make for great viewing, but also ensure the fleet is closer for more of the race time, which will also add to the spectacle.

So this party is set to be a very important one, for not only is it inclusive for owners and sailors, it will offer something for spectators of all levels during the eight race regatta. Those that have witnessed Sail Melbourne will understand the choice of Sandringham Yacht Club as the host venue. There is a huge breakwater right in front of the clubhouse that has a full-length balcony from which to take in all the action and watch not only unbelievable sunsets, but also Melbourne’s CBD as the lights come on at dusk.


Kate Mitchell, Vice Commodore of the Sandringham Yacht Club, said 'Absolutely delighted to have such talent sailing talent racing out of the club over the weekend. It promises to be exciting and very enjoyable to watch, no matter whether you’re a full time sailor or just interested member of the public. Our members are thrilled to offer their facilities to these wonderful sailors and their fancy machines.'

'I am sure John Williams, Graeme Ainley and Jason Van Der Slot along with their crews of Calm and Calm2 will do SYC proud.'


The breakwater that forms SYC’s marina or their restaurant, Harbour View, can offer you a certain amount of viewing. However, if you contact the club directly on 9599 0999 to arrange your best vantage point, they will do their best to assist. Also, any Victorian club members can sign in at the Reception Desk and then go to Member’s Bar for the best views on offer.

Sandringham’s Boating Manger is ISAF International Race Officer, Athanasios (Sulis) Papantoniou. He said, 'We are really looking to this and bringing a piece of the Mediterranean to Melbourne, which will be a nice addition after we have just had the whole world come to see us with Sail Melbourne and the Sailing World Cup, late last year.'

'The downwind start is used a lot in Europe, as it is very exciting and obviously spectacular. Denis Thompson is the Race Officer for the Southern Cross Cup and between us we will utilise this great option when it is suitable.'


'Conducting the racing as close to shore and nearby the club as is possible will be our primary goal, so that everyone can get a feel for these wonderful machines and see what the awesome vessels and great crews are capable off', Sulis finished with.

One thing that also looks like coming to the party is the weather. The subject of many a conversation, there looks to be warm sunny days for the most of it with moderate breezes, mostly from the South. Waves will play apart as they will have the whole length of Port Phillip to build fetch and when it gets to 20-25knots on Saturday, they could make 2m. Of course, with the Bay, you always want to wait until you get there before you back the forecast in too much, but it certainly looks like game on for the racing.

Port Phillip’s reputation as a venue for World Championship and One Design racing is acknowledged the world over, so the TP52 Southern Cross Cup is certainly beginning in a good place.


Some souls will be lucky enough to be really amongst the party when they get to experience racing from on board one of the vessels. For the newer vessels, there is a limit of 12 crew on board, six of whom can be professionals. A thirteenth spot will be for an invited guest or sponsor.

The older craft have 14 crew positions and the fifteenth will be the invited guest. If they have sea legs they will be put to use, no matter whether they are on a newer or older vessel, as these craft deploy only manual winches and need each and every soul, plus their weight, for specific duties throughout the entire race. Equally, if they do get in the maximum three races after midday on each day, they will go home very tired, as an added and special gift from the TP52 Southern Cross Cup.


Brighton Jeep and Coopers Brewery bring the first round of the inaugural TP52 Southern Cross Cup to you. Guessing they will deservedly have a few of the prized extra crew spots allocated to them.

See syc.com.au and transpac52.org/home for more information.

NaiadSchaefer 2016 Ratchet 300x250Kilwell - 5

Related Articles

NewYork–Vendée Race – Pieter Heerema heads for port
At 12:22 UTC Dutch skipper Pieter Heerema pointed the bow of his IMOCA 60 No Way Back towards Newport, Rhode Island. Overnight he suffered four collisions with unidentified objects in the water. Finally the fourth impact damaged his foil and foil casing, creating a small leak.
Posted today at 7:12 pm
Some frames from today's start of the San Francisco to Monterey Race
Photographer Erik Simonson was on the water and provided this gallery of images from the start of the race. Photographer Erik Simonson was on the water and provided this gallery of images from the start of the race.
Posted today at 6:31 pm
Winners make the most of the light conditions at Myth of Malham Race
Tenacity and dogged determination were to the fore for the class winners of the 230-mile race. The two boats were literally side by side for the 230 mile race and after IRC time correction Pintia was the winner by just eight seconds after 38 hours of racing.
Posted today at 6:10 pm
Impressive performance from Team Engie on GC32 Racing Tour
The aim of finishing in the middle of the fleet has been achieved in what is a very competitive fleet. The aim of finishing in the middle of the fleet has been achieved in what is a very competitive fleet. The ENGIE crew will need to continue to race well in order to move up the rankings gradually this season.
Posted today at 5:11 pm
Queguiner-Leucémie Espoir suffers collision with UFO at NewYork–Vendée
Eliès explained that the impact caused a small rupture in the daggerboard’s case and damaged bottom of the board itself. After a first night spent in close contact with other competitors in the New York–Vendée (Les Sables d’Olonne) presented by Currency House and SpaceCode, Yann Eliès contacted his shore team this morning at 0840 UTC, reporting that his yacht Queguiner-Leucemie Espoir had just hit something in the water with her port daggerboard.
Posted today at 1:10 pm
My Best Olympic Race – Lijia Xu, London 2012 Laser Radial Medal Race
Each contender focused on their own efforts as whoever crossed the finish line first would be crowned Olympic champion. Imagination matters when growing up. Children pictures themselves as their heroes and heroines. From film stars, sporting heroes, astronauts and firemen, the list goes on.
Posted today at 12:54 pm
Franck Cammas steers Norauto to GC32 Riva Cup victory
At least the nine-boat fleet had a chance to enjoy one last blast around the lake in the only race that could take place At least the nine-boat fleet had a chance to enjoy one last blast around the lake in the only race that could take place, in a brief half-hour of 14-15 knot winds. Appropriately enough, the top two places went to the two stand-out teams of the week, Norauto leading Team Tilt across the finish line.
Posted today at 12:32 pm
GC32 Riva Cup finishes in grand style
The first edition featured Olympians, Skippers from the America's Cup and celebrities such as Pierre Casiraghi. The staff of Fraglia Vela Riva are pleased with the outcome of having organised an event with nine 32' foil boats with 19 races completed in perfect skiff conditions with winds of 8-10 knots which also added to the speed and performance of the boats in competition.
Posted today at 10:29 am
New York Vendee - Images of the IMOCA Currency House Charity Race
George Bekris provided this gallery of the IMOCA Currency House Charity Race prior to the start of the New York - Vendee Top US photographer George Bekris provided this gallery of the IMOCA Currency House Charity Race prior to the start of the New York - Vendee and a good chance to have a look at some of the entries before heading across the Atlantic for the start of the Vendee Globe Race around the world.
Posted today at 9:08 am
The Clipper Race - LMAX Exchange – Race of the Americas start
The Clipper Race teams will soon be back racing the in the Atlantic Ocean where their journey began nine months ago 2015 -16 Clipper Round the World Yacht Race - The Clipper Race teams will soon be back racing the in the Atlantic Ocean where their journey began nine months ago, as the fleet prepares to start The LMAX Exchange – Race of The Americas from Panama to New York.
Posted today at 7:39 am