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Leading yachts set to challenge for Audi IRC Australian Championship    

'Glamour start in the Audi IRC Australian Championships - AUDI HAMILTON ISLAND RACE WEEK 2012'    Craig Greenhill Saltwater Images ©

Yachting Australia and the Royal Geelong Yacht Club have released the Notice of Race for the 2013 Audi IRC Australian Championship, which are to be held in conjunction with the annual Festival of Sails regatta in Geelong, Victoria.

In 2013, competition for the Championship will take place in the fast flat waters of Geelong’s Corio Bay from Thursday 24th January – Sunday 27th January.

Competition is expected to be fierce following the success of the close finish at Audi Hamilton Island Race Week, which saw Marcus Blackmore’s TP52 Hooligan and Darryl Hodgkinson’s Victoire successfully defend their 2011 titles in Class A and Class B respectively, with Roland Dane’s Jessandra II winning Class C.

Luxury car maker, Audi Australia has continued its long standing support of sailing in Australia with confirmation of a two year agreement to sponsor the Audi IRC Australian Championship in 2013 and 2014, complementing the company’s involvement as a major co-sponsor of the Australian Sailing Team and a corporate partner of Yachting Australia.

Audi’s managing director, Uwe Hagen, said the company is keen to continue its association with the Championship and to ensure that its support of the sailing community is comprehensive and diverse.

'We are pleased to support the Audi IRC Australian Championship for 2013 and 2014 as part of our sailing sport sponsorship. We believe it’s a critical part of the competitive Australian sailing landscape and an important challenge for Australia’s best sailors. The Festival of Sails is sure to provide a very competitive environment from which the 2013 Audi IRC Australian Champion will be crowned,' Mr Hagen said.

The January 2013 Championship will be the second running under the revised single regatta format which proved hugely successful at Audi Hamilton Island Race Week, with the final winner being decided on the last race and by a single point margin.

'The structure of a single event moving between states is in line with feedback from owners from across the country and we look forward to an increase in support of the Championship over the next few years' Phil Jones, CEO of Yachting Australia said.

The Audi IRC Australian Championship will form part of the annual Festival of Sails regatta which is acclaimed as the Southern Hemisphere’s largest annual sailing festival. The 2013 event will feature 19 different classes and race series competing during the 170th running of the historic regatta.

Festival of Sails Event Organiser and Olympic Sailing Gold medallist Mark Turnbull OAM is expecting to see a large fleet of yachts participating in what is the oldest sporting event in Victoria.

For Notice of Race and online entries please visit www.irc.yachting.org.au




by Craig Heydon/Jav Greaves