The Rolex Sydney Hobart new leader on handicap is Victoire.
After the eoic line honours battle between Investec Loyal and Wild Oats XI attention now turns to the overall winner of the race and also to the protest room for a decision on whether Investec Loyal’s line honours win yesterday stands.
Darryl Hodgkinson’s Victoire, a Beneteau First 45, is only seconds ahead (on corrected time) of second-placed Wild Rose, Roger Hickman’s 26-year-old Farr 43, and an hour ahead of Andrew Saies Beneteau 40 Two True. All three still have many miles to sail before they reach Hobart.
Victoire has to finish by 12.40am tomorrow to beat fourth across the line Loki, which is already tied up in Hobart. At this morning’s position, she is due to cross the line at 10.40pm today.
Wild Rose won the 1993 Rolex Sydney Hobart while Two True, from the Cruising Yacht Club of South Australia, won the 2009 race. 'Wouldn’t it be something for a South Australian boat to win the race three years in a row and for me to have won it twice,' Andrew Saies said. Another South Australian boat, Secret Men’s Business 3.5 won last year.
Anthony Bell’s Investec Loyal remains the provisional line honours winner of the 2011 race. However, the win is subject to a protest by the race committee that the boat received outside assistance on the first morning of the race when its tactician Michael Coxon asked an ABC helicopter crew about Wild Oats XI’s sail set up. Wild Oats, the five-time line honours winner was then leading the race.
The protest, before an international jury of five, begins at 10am at the Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania.
At 8am five boats had finished: Investec Loyal, Wild Oats XI, Lahana, Loki and Hugo Boss. There were no more retirements overnight.
Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race website