sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Video Gallery Photo Gallery
Sail-World.com : Audi Hamilton Island Race Week - The sparkle of Gold
Audi Hamilton Island Race Week - The sparkle of Gold

'Sailing symmetry: Racing starts at Audi Hamilton Island Race Week this Saturday'    Andrea Francolini / Audi ©    Click Here to view large photo

Audi Hamilton Island Race Week is riding high off the back of the Australian Sailing Team’s phenomenal result at the London Olympics. The sailing euphoria is buoying spirits for close to 2,000 yachties making the annual pilgrimage by road, plane, ferry and boat to Hamilton Island.

There will be a sprinkle of gold dust spread all the way to the Mecca of winter sailing with Olympic Laser gold medallist Tom Slingsby arriving today to join Peter Harburg’s Black Jack crew. He’ll bring his new found fame and tactical nous to an already highly competitive Queensland outfit.

Other members of the world-beating Australian Sailing Team will join Slingsby on Tuesday 21 August for an official welcome home and tickertape parade on Front Street.

The regatta boasts a line-up of 163 sports boats, cruising yachts, cruiser-racers and Grand Prix level keelboats, plus two high-performance trimarans. On shore over the next 10 days, sailors and their families will clink glasses with actors, fashion designers, super models and celebrity chefs, and enjoy an early taste of spring in the tropics.

Out on the race track the stage is set for another classic saltwater showdown in the stunning Whitsunday Islands with racing kicking off this Saturday, 18 August, through to the decider on Saturday 25 August. The lay-day on Wednesday 22nd will offer competitors a well-deserved rest, and a chance to catch up on the social itinerary, which is as busy as the on water program.

The cream of Australia’s IRC Grand Prix crop is readying for the starting blocks in what will be a tough contest. Many crews have arrived early to train and squeeze the last ounce of potential performance from the boat and crew in the final countdown to the starter’s gun this Saturday.

The decision was made to simplify the national championship concept, returning it to its successful roots as a stand-alone sailing event. This year Audi Hamilton Island Race Week will be the deciding event and in future years the championship will move to other clubs and states.

All yachts entered in the three IRC classes are automatically entered in the Audi IRC Australian Championship.

In division A, previous Audi IRC Australian champion and Audi Hamilton Island Race Week overall winner, Stephen Ainsworth, and his stunningly fast RP63 Loki, are in the box seat based on their recent success in the Audi Sydney Gold Coast Yacht Race.

Also with his eye on the championship crown is last year’s division A Race Week winner, Marcus Blackmore, sailing his TP52, Hooligan. Blackmore has assembled a dream team including round-the-world yachtsmen Stu Bannatyne and Tom Addis and America’s Cup sailor Billy Merrington, to take on other same sized challengers including Jim Farmer and Chris Meads’ New Zealand entry, Georgia, and Rob Hanna’s Shogun.

At 98 feet, the Mark Richard’s skippered Wild Oats XI (owned by Bob Oatley) will lead the division in terms of size while Connel McClaren’s New Zealand 40 footer, Icebreaker, is the smallest. Theoretically both are level pegged on handicap, however Richards doesn’t like their chances given the supermaxi’s rating. Barring mishap they will be unmatched for line honours.

Division B will be ‘fiercely fought’ according to principal race officer, Denis Thompson, while division C’s is equally impressive with its strong Beneteau line-up, plus Roland Dane’s Jessandra II, two-time Audi IRC Australian champion, Peter Sorensen’s The Philosopher’s Club, and John Bacon’s MC38 Dark Star.

The SB20 class is readying for its world championship at Hamilton Island later this year, the 29th edition of Audi Hamilton Island Race Week providing the perfect shakedown for the world title. Local talent and Island CEO, Glenn Bourke, is a front runner for a class win next week and to add yet another notch to his world championship belt come December.

The Melges 24s and 32s will be tightly packed while the large cruising fleet, the backbone of the longstanding event, will provide the colour and entertainment, and for the more serious there will be plenty of rivalry within divisions.

A light wind regime is expected to ease competitors slowly into the on-water program. Given the forecast, Saturday’s 23 nautical mile opening Lindeman Island Race could prove a tricky icebreaker. Should light air and big tides come into play, navigators and tacticians will have to be on their toes as they snake in among the islands of the Whitsunday Group.

Regatta forecaster Kenn Batt sees good things after the opening light day with a steady return to the SE trade winds typical for this time of year. The talk on the dock is 25 knot winds by Tuesday.

Friday night’s official welcome party at Hamilton Island Yacht Club will open proceedings with Race Week skippers joining VIP guests and the Island’s owners, the Oatley family, on the eve of Australia’s most awarded keelboat regatta.

All information regarding the 29th Audi Hamilton Island Race Week can be found on the website www.hamiltonislandraceweek.com.au


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=100996

3:51 AM Thu 16 Aug 2012GMT


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

Click for further information on
2012 Audi Hamilton Island Race Week

Related News Stories:

14 Aug 2012  Gold medallist Tom Slingsby set for Audi Hamilton Island Race Week
07 Aug 2012  Hamilton Island Race Week - Gold Medallist Tom Slingsby to compete
07 Aug 2012  Audi Hamilton island Race Week: Olympic sailing team, parties and more
06 Aug 2012  Audi Hamilton Island Race Week 2012 entries pass 150
30 Jul 2012  Audi Hamilton Island Race Week - Something for everyone
25 Jul 2012  Hamilton Island Race Week - New configuration for Wild Oats XI
17 Jul 2012  Audi Hamilton Island Race Week - $45,000 prize on offer
09 Jul 2012  Audi Hamilton Island Race Week Prix d’ Elegance - Anyone can win
27 Jun 2012  Audi Hamilton Island Race Week - 100th entry received
18 Jun 2012  Hamilton Island Race Week - Royal yacht enters Grand Prix Division
MORE STORIES ...






News - USA and the World

Team GBR’s Sparky on the Road to Rio (Part Two) *Feature by Rob Kothe and the Sail-World Team,


Team GBR’s Sparky on the Road to Rio (Part Two) by Rob Kothe and the Sail-World Team,
















Team GBR on the Road to Rio (Part One) by Rob Kothe and the Sail-World team,
















































ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyeres - Sailors tweet about opening day
49er Blog: Glorious racing to kick start Hyeres World Cup
Clipper Round the World Yacht Race - Continuous close racing
ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyères - Fluttering flags whet sailors appetite
Antigua Classic Yacht Regatta - Race 4 images by Jude Robertson
ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyeres - US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider Day 1
ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyeres - Day 1 Nacra 17 images by Thom Touw
ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyeres - Day 1 Laser images by Thom Touw
ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyeres: Ioannis Mitakis leads Finns after day 1
RC44 Cascais Cup - Fresh faces join the line-up
ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyeres - Excellent racing on opening day
ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyeres - Images by Yvan Zedda and Franck Socha
ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyeres - Day 1 images by Franck Socha
Hyeres World Cup: Kiwis lead but Outteridge Jensen back in 49er fray
Belcher and Ryan lead from the start in Hyeres
ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyères - Race day 1 ready for lift off
Clipper Round the World Race 11 - Tense match downwind racing on Day 2
Antigua Classic Yacht Regatta - Day 3 an absolute gem
Quantum Key West 2015 dates confirmed
Flying Tigers 'Psych' - on Lake Lanier they pronounce it Zhik
ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyeres: Anticipation intensifies as start nears   
Clipper Round the World Race - Race 11 start images by Chuck Lantz   
27th Antigua Classic Yacht Regatta 2014 - Big breeze on the butterfly   
Rolex China Sea Race 2014 - Pryde and Joy for Hi Fi   
Clipper Round The World Race - A flying start on Day 1 of Race 11   
Cammas on Caudrelier – different styles, same objective   
Clipper Race - Californian crew member continues fundraising journey   
Antigua Classic Yacht Regatta - Race 2 images by Jude Robertson   
Les Voiles de St Barth - Images by Christophe Jouany   
Clipper Round the World Yacht Race - Fleet sets sail in race 11   
Congressional Cup - Canfield and Team US One best star-studded field   
Clipper Round the World Yacht Race - Race 11 to get underway to Panama   
Antigua Classic Yacht Regatta - Race 1 images by Jude Robertson   
Rolex China Sea Race - Hi Fi collects the coveted IRC Overall title   
Rolex China Sea Race - First arrivals in Subic Bay   
Rolex China Sea Race 2014 - a sniff of a hat-trick for Neil Pryde   
America's Cup Book Review: Winging It - Oracle Team USA's comeback *Feature   
Clipper Round the World Yacht Race: Switzerland drops trou for charity   
Rolex China Sea Race 2014 - nip and tuck for IRC honours   
Antigua Classic Yacht Regatta - 27th edition underway   


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.
X6XL NEW US