Please select your home edition
Edition
Bakewell-White Yacht Design

Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race - Hobart waits in a state of anticipation

by Peter Campbell on 27 Dec 2013
The Customs House Hotel - Rolex Sydney to Hobart 2013 Peter Campbell
Rolex Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race 2013 - The finishing line has been laid off Hobart’s history Battery Point, the race control centre is up and running at the Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania, TasCoast Radio is on the air, the King Street marina and Elizabeth Street pier berths cleared for a massive influx of yachts, starting sometime on Saturday.

The yachties’ favourite post-race watering holes, the Customs House Hotel, the Shipwrights Arms and other pubs around Hobart’s historic waterfront of Sullivans Cove are fully stocked to cope with the influx of some 1500 thirsty sailors and their waiting friends and families.

Interstate and international media have already set up at the Rolex Media Centre in the Mawson Pavilion adjacent to Constitution Dock, the journalists looking for stories too as they wait the arrival of the first yachts,

The City of Hobart is now in a state of anticipation, as it has been at this time of the year for the past 69 years when the little yacht Rani took line honours from a fleet of nine boats in the inaugural race in 1945. Lord Mayor Damon Thomas is ready to welcome the first yacht, initially out on the Derwent and then when the yacht comes alongside the special dock outside Constitution Dock.

Almost every year since then the fleet has increased massively, the size of the line honours winning yacht has grown and grown, and the interest in the race has expanded from the local Hobartians to huge international race coverage.

There have been changes around the waterfront since last year’s race. The controversial ice skating rink has gone and across the street is an interesting replica of Mawson’s Hut at Commonwealth Bay, honouring the famous Australian Antarctic explorer. By the time the fleets arrive the Taste of Tasmania will be in full swing.

At the outer end of the Elizabeth Street Pier special berthing facilities have been made for the dozen Clipper 70 yachts. Much anticipated is the start of the next leg of their round-world race, from Hobart to Brisbane, on January 1.

They will start off Castray Esplanade, finish line for the Rolex Sydney Hobart, as their start line, sailing a short windward/leeward leg on the Derwent before heading down river to the Iron Pot and out to sea.

By Friday afternoon, with the start of the Melbourne to Hobart Races, one around the West Coast of Tasmania, the other down the East Coast, and also the National Launceston to Hobart Race, a further 47 racing yachts will have joined the 92 Sydney Hobart racers heading for Hobart, in total potentially 139 yachts to be berthed around Sullivans Cove and in Constitution Dock.

The Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania has enlisted 200 volunteers to handle the finish, under Rolex Sydney Hobart Race finish co-ordinator ‘Biddy’ Badenach. Their tasks range from manning the Castray Esplanade finish box 24 hours a day from late this evening until the last yacht finishes, probably late on New Year’s Eve.

All four ocean race fleets heading for Hobart will use the same finish line off Castray Esplanade, a constant task for the team with as many as half a dozen yachts often crossing the line within seconds of each other.

Club radio operators are already keeping a listing watch 24 hours a day on TasCoast Radio and patrol boat crews are on standby to guide the yachts to their berths once they finish.

Open from today is the RYCT information centre alongside Constitution Dock providing the public with the latest information on progress of the fleet. The centre also has an historic display from past Sydney Hobarts.

The progress of the fleet today indicates that a race record is unlikely in the Rolex Sydney Hobart, but it seems certain that the wait will be worthwhile for the thousands of Tasmanians and visitors to the State, and not the least, the race volunteers, as a daylight duel up the River Derwent on Saturday afternoon seems likely.

Just think of what it’s going to be like in late December 2014 as the 70th Sydney Hobart fleet heads for Hobart.

Naiad/Oracle SupplierSchaefer 2016 Ratchet 300x250North Technology - Southern Spars

Related Articles

America's Cup - Arbitration Panel Hearing over Kiwi Qualifier for July
ACEA CEO, Russell Coutts has confirmed that the Arbitration Panel will hold its first Hearing in July. In a yet to be published interview in Sail-World, America’s Cup Events Authority CEO, Russell Coutts has confirmed that the Arbitration Panel will hold its first Hearing in July. This is the first official indication that the three person Arbitration Panel had even been formed, however Sail-World’s sources indicated that it had been empanelled since last January, possibly earlier.
Posted today at 3:19 am
Rio 2016 - The Qualification Games - Part 2
Yachting NZ's refusal to nominate in three classes won in the first round of 2016 Olympic Qualification is unprecedented Yachting New Zealand's refusal to nominate in three classes won in the first round of 2016 Olympic Qualification is without precedent. Subject to Appeal, the Kiwis have signaled that they will reject 30% of the positions gained in the ISAF World Sailing Championships in Santander in 2014.
Posted on 22 May
Gladwell's Line - World Sailing changes tack after IOC windshift
Over the past year, we've given the International Sailing Federation (now re-badged as World Sailing) a bit of stick Over the past year, we've given the International Sailing Federation (now re-badged as World Sailing) a bit of stick. Every blow well earned over issues such as the pollution at Rio, the Israeli exclusion abomination plus a few more. But now World Sailing is getting it right.
Posted on 21 May
Rio 2016 - The Qualification Games - Part 1
Antipodean selection shenanigans aside, the Qualification system for the Rio Olympics appears to be achieving its goals Antipodean selection shenanigans aside, the Qualification system for the Rio Olympics appears to be achieving goals set in the Olympic Commission report of 2010. Around 64 countries are expected to be represented in Rio de Janeiro in August. That is a slight increase on Qingdao and Weymouth, but more importantly a full regional qualification system is now in place
Posted on 19 May
Taming the beast-a conversation with Stuart Meurer of Parker Hannifin
While AC72 cats were fast, they difficult to control, so Oracle partnered with Parker Hannifin to innovate a better way. If you watched videos of the AC72s racing in the 34th America’s Cup (2013), you’re familiar with the mind-boggling speeds that are possible when wingsail-powered catamarans switch from displacement sailing to foiling mode. While foiling is fast, there’s no disguising the platform’s inherent instability. Now, Oracle Team USA has teamed up with Parker Hannifin to innovate a better way.
Posted on 18 May
From foiling Moths to Olympic starting lines-a Q&A with Bora Gulari
Bora Gulari’s is representing the USA at the Rio 2016 Olympics in the Nacra 17 class, along with teammate Louisa Chafee. Bora Gulari (USA) has made a strong name for himself within high-performance sailing circles, with wins at the 2009 and 2013 Moth Worlds. In between, he broke the 30-knort barrier and was the 2009 US SAILING Rolex Yachtsman of the Year. His latest challenge is representing the USA at the Rio 2016 Olympics in the Nacra 17 class as skipper, along with his teammate Louisa Chafee.
Posted on 12 May
Concern for Zika at Rio Olympics is now deadly serious
Alphabet soup is one description that has thus far not been used for either Guanabara Bay, Alphabet soup is one description that has thus far not been used for either Guanabara Bay, or the Rio Olympics. Many others have, and they were apt, but things have changed. So here now we have a situation where one man, Associate Professor Amir Attaran, who does have a more than decent string of letters after his name, is bringing nearly as many facts to bear as references at the article's end
Posted on 12 May
Zhik - The brand born of a notion, not its history
here is probably every reason that ocean rhymes with notion. Zhik’s tagline is officially marketed as Made For Water There is probably every reason that ocean rhymes with notion. Zhik’s tagline has been officially marketed as Made For Water, and this is precisely what the company has done for the last eight years before the succinct and apt strapline came from out of R&D and into mainstream visibility.
Posted on 8 May
Shape of next Volvo Ocean Race revealed at Southern Spars - Part 1
Southern Spars has been confirmed as the supplier of spars for the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race. In mid-April, Race Director, Jack Lloyd and Stopover Manager Richard Mason outlined the changes expected for the 40,000nm Race during a tour of Southern Spars 10,000sq metre specialist spar construction facility. A total of up to seven boats is expected to enter, but time is running out for the construction of any new boats.
Posted on 3 May
Sailing in the Olympics beyond 2016 - A double Olympic medalist's view
Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. Gold and Bronze medalist and multiple world boardsailing/windsurfer champion, Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. A key driver is the signalled intention by the International Olympic Committee to select a basket of events that will be contested.
Posted on 29 Apr