Please select your home edition
Edition
Wildwind 2016 728x90

Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2012 – Warwick Sherman living life to fullest

by Di Pearson on 18 Dec 2012
Judi Burrell and Warick Sherman (owner of Occasional Coarse Language 2) Jennifer Crooks
The Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2012 will be again a test of endurance and will power for the participating fleets in the Boxing Day’s sailing showcase. However, for Warwick Sherman, the upcoming big race serves as yet another chance to live his life to the fullest in the high seas since being inflicted with a serious disease two years ago.

When Cruising Yacht Club of Australia yachtsman Warwick Sherman sets foot on his yacht Occasional Coarse Language Too on Boxing Day, he will remember all the reasons he is finally looking down the barrel of his first Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race at the age of 58.

It’s not that Sherman lacks the experience or the appetite for the acquired taste the 628 nautical mile race is - far from it, the Huntley’s Point yachtsman has plenty of offshore experience and ocean miles under his belt.

But it was being diagnosed with non-Hodgkin mantle cell lymphoma in June 2010 that finally pushed him to try it. But, says Sherman, the purpose in undertaking his first jaunt south to Hobart is threefold.

'It’s just something you should do as an ocean racer, it’s something you should do at least once in your life; but the motivation was when I got ill,' Sherman admitted.

Sherman is a rarity among men; he is not afraid to talk about his illness and he is not afraid of showing emotion in regard to it; nor embarrassed by people enquiring after his health – or those just offering him help and a hug.

'When I was diagnosed, the doctors told me not to worry, but once they took a closer look, they found it was a rare form of lymphoma. I was under a new protocol – before me, mortality was not an option for sufferers. Even now there’s not enough history too know what the survival rate will be…,' Sherman said from aboard his near-new Occasional Coarse Language Too at the CYCA.

'I did the right thing, I faithfully had a medical check-up every year since turning 50, and that’s how it got picked up,' he said. 'The doctors said they could treat me straight away, or wait and let the disease hit aggressively – and treat it aggressively - and I took the second option; better than going two rounds with chemo after being weakened by the first lot.

'That’s when I decided to buy the new boat. I ordered it and it arrived 12 months later in July 2011. I started chemo in October 2011 and finished in March 2012, so I was unable to sail for a while, the doctor said it was too dangerous, as I could have ruptured my spleen and bled internally.'

Originally Sherman’s boat was put together for the 2011 Hobart, 'but I was too sick to go,' he said.

Following on, the yachtsman had stem cell replacement and went out and won his division in the CYCA’s 2012 Audi Winter Series on his Ker GTS43, Occasional Coarse Language Too, and its name reflecting the nature of yachting when things go awry.

'I took a positive approach, I wasn’t going to let the cancer rule my life,' Sherman stated.

All the while, his partner and crew Judi Burrell stood by him, as she is now doing in the lead-up to the 628 nautical mile Rolex Sydney Hobart.

'Judi’s always been part of the crew, but she decided to stand aside for the strength of the team, which is five of my regulars and seven Tow Trucks,' Sherman said, referring to a solid crew of sailors who sailed the yacht Tow Truck and who know how to drive a boat hard, fast and safely, including Anthony Paterson and Brett Filby.

'It’s pretty funny to think Judi has done three Hobarts and I haven’t done any,' Sherman said of Burrell, who did pit duty on Alan Brierty’s Limit, but who will cheer her man on from the sidelines this time around.

'I’m not sorry not to be going; I feel fortunate to have done the three I have,' Burrell said laughing. 'I’ll be at the CYCA to see him off. It can be quite stressful for the skipper, I remember AB (Brierty) before all of his,' she said.

'I’ll stay ashore and support him – keep him calm and focussed. I’m looking forward to meeting them all on Constitution Dock (Hobart) when the finish with the scallop pies and beer.'

Burrell said Sherman had not asked her what the race was like. 'He saw photos from Limit when I did the 2010 race and hasn’t asked anything since,' she said smiling.

Sherman is determined to do well in the CYCA’s annual 628 nautical mile race. 'I’m a bit out of the loop because I haven’t done longer races of late, then my steering failed in the Gold Coast race, but we’ll see,' he said.

He reckons the Ker 40, AFR Midnight Rambler (Ed Psaltis, Bob Thomas, Michael Bencsik) and Bruce Taylor’s Caprice 40, Chutzpah from Victoria, will give him the most trouble should the conditions favour the 40-45 footers.

'It might sound a funny thing to say, but I have no emotions in particular about the race – I’ve done 12 Gosford Lord Howe Island races and others, so one side of me is telling me ‘you could have died, so push yourself’, and the other side says ‘So why not take it easy – it’s quite a long race and you don’t want to go out there and do something stupid after coming through the cancer’.'
T Clewring Cruisingupffront 660x82Zhik Yachting 660x82

Related Articles

Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race – the better mousetrap
Rolex Sydney Hobart 2012 - The grand classic ocean race is remembered for many things. Rolex Sydney Hobart 2012 - The grand classic ocean race is remembered for many things from records and personal achievements, to tribulations and unfortunately, disasters too. 2012 will be no different in that department. However, rising out of the turmoil with a plan and path forward is the Supermaxi, Wild Thing and her enigmatic Skipper, Grant Wharington.
Posted on 2 Jan 2013
Rolex Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race video selection
Rolex Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race 2012 - A selection of videos Rolex Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race 2012 - A selection of videos including pre-race drama, 50 Golden Years three part documentary and more footage of the race.
Posted on 2 Jan 2013
Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2012 – Quartet of honorary gentlemen
Sydney Hobart Race 2012 presented its highest award to John Kirkjian, Peter Campbell, Rowan Johnston and John Honeysett The Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2012 presented its highest award to John Kirkjian, Peter Campbell, Rowan Johnston and John Honeysett for their individual contributions to the Boxing Day spectacle throughout the years.
Posted on 1 Jan 2013
Sydney Hobart 2012 – Maluka of Kermandie's arrival formally ends race
Sydney Hobart race officially ended after Sean Langman-skippered Maluka of Kermandie crossed finish line at 9.40.12pm he Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2012 officially closed its curtain after Sean Langman-skippered Maluka of Kermandie crossed the finish line at 9.40.12pm, ending up last on line in the 628-nautical mile ocean race for the second consecutive year.
Posted on 1 Jan 2013
Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2012 – Prizegiving on New Year’s Day
Sydney Hobart Race 2012 scheduled to formally award the trophies to the overall and divisional winners on January 1 The Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2012 is scheduled to formally award the trophies to the overall and divisional winners of this year’s Boxing Day Race classic at 11:00am on Tuesday 1 January 2013 at the Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania.
Posted on 31 Dec 2012
Sydney Hobart 2012 – Dump Truckers vow return
Justin Wells, Dump Truck crew vow to compete in 628 nautical mile race after being forced to retire The Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2012 had been a testing journey for 2012 Ocean Racing Rookie of the Year Justin Wells and the crew of Dump Truck, who vowed to make their return in the Boxing Day classic after retiring from this year’s race with the finish line just roughly 100 nautical miles away.
Posted on 31 Dec 2012
Rolex Sydney Hobart 2012 - The match races within the race
The Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race has been billed as the match races within the race The Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race has been billed as the match races within the race – long-time foes battling for glory across several divisions, with just seconds separating winner from loser, while many had nervous waits for final results.
Posted on 31 Dec 2012
Rolex Sydney Hobart 2012 - Boats flood into Hobart with tales to tell
Day five of the 2012 Rolex Sydney Hobart has seen a flood of boats arriving in Hobart, each with tales to tell. Day five of the 2012 Rolex Sydney Hobart has seen a flood of boats arriving in Hobart, each with tales to tell. This has been a difficult race for the smaller boats; they have experienced a range of weather from good to bad. Few would deny theirs has been a true Rolex Sydney Hobart.
Posted on 31 Dec 2012
Sydney Hobart 2012 – Tony Cable successful in 47th Boxing Day race
Tony Cable, Duende finishes Rolex Sydney Hobart journey after three days, 22 hours and nine minutes The Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2012 was a turnaround for Tony Cable from last year’s short-lived journey as the 47-time Boxing Day race participant skippered Duende to the finish line after three days, 22 hours and nine minutes.
Posted on 30 Dec 2012
Sydney Hobart 2012 – Gold medalist looks for more sailing challenges
Australian Paralympian great Liesl Tesch enjoys latest Boxing Day race adventure, eyes more Sydney Hobart Race voyages The fast and furious nature of their latest Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race adventure makes Australian Paralympian great Liesl Tesch and the DisABILITIES crew craving for more 628-nautical mile voyage in the future.
Posted on 30 Dec 2012