The Sydney Hobart race gets off to a flying Boxing Day start

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The great Sydney to Hobart classic race got away to a full-on start on Boxing day.

Rob Kothe reported live on a web link for Sail-World as Wild Oats XI led off the line to the harbour buoy. As I send this newsletter, Wild Oats XI has stretched her lead to about four miles over Skandia and Maximus, which are neck and neck, and just a mile or so behind them are the Volvo 70s ABN AMRO ONE and Ichi Ban.

Sail-World will be reporting the complete race so tune into for the latest updates.

Also in this edition we have news of the success of GBR sailors at the Palamos Christmas regatta -Mark Powell won the Laser event, Alison Young the Radial and Luke Patience and Twiggy Grube the 470.

See you all in the New Year.

All clear ahead for RKJ on Boxing Day
By Sir Robin Knox-Johnston,
I am sitting here with the clearest head I have had on a Boxing Day for years, and my liver wondering how much longer this holiday is going to last. For those of you suffering let me tell you this unusual sober situation is not all it is made out to be. I would not add abstemious Christmases to my list of recommendations for the future... [more]

Victory for Brits at Palamos Christmas Race
By Sail-World/GJN,
Christmas came early for British sailors taking part in the Palamos Christmas Regatta. Mark Powell won the Laser class, Alison Young won the Radial and Luke Patience and Twiggy Grube won the 470 Mens event. Hannah Mills and Rachel Lawman just missed a podium place, finishing fourth in the 470 Womens event... [more]

Fleet tightly packed - Rolex Sydney Hobart
By Lisa Ratcliff,
As the 2006 Rolex Sydney Hobart race fleet enters its first night, the southerly winds have kept the fleet remarkably tightly packed. Normally after five or six hours the fleet begins to stretch out, but winds on the nose are a great leveller... [more]

Images From Today's Rolex Sydney Hobart Start
By Crosbie Lorimer,
With some of the clearest light for the race start for many years and a fine southeast breeze, the images from today's action were as crisp as any photographer could hope for.... [more]

Optimist pre-worlds - Rioplatense Championship
By Sail-World/GJN,
The Optimist pre-worlds event, the Rioplatense Championship, was won by Ben Graz of Chile, with Jose Jimenez also from Chile second and Stephanie Zimmerman from Peru third... [more]

Wild Oats XI first through the Heads
By Lisa Ratcliff,
2006 Rolex Sydney Hobart race favourite Wild Oats XI has laid down the gauntlet to her rivals in a perfect start to the ocean classic on Sydney Harbour today. It took the sleek grey maxi less than seven minutes to storm down the harbour to the first rounding mark between North and South Heads, ahead of Skandia and New Zealand's Maximus... [more]

British RS-K6 keelboat cracks US market
By RS media,
The American YC on Long Island Sound, New York, have ordered twelve RS-K6 keelboats to launch a K6 fleet for the start of the 2007 season. Meanwhile back in the UK a similar process has taken place at Itchenor SC in Chichester Harbour, where only specified classes race and a new fleet is big news... [more]

Solo class regional round-up of 2006
By Claire H Clark,
In its 50th Anniversary year the Solo class had excellent turnouts for its many Open and Championship events. Below is a report on the various Regional Series in 2006. With a buoyant secondhand market and a new build choice of all wood, all 'plastic' or composite construction the class is looking forward to another great year in 2007... [more]

Further voice report from start Sydney Hobart
By Rob Kothe,
Rob Kothe updates the start of the Sydney Hobart... [more]

Live voice report from start of Sydney Hobart
By Rob Kothe,
Rob Kothe reports live from the start on Sydney Harbour.... [more]

Merry Christmas Everyone - RKJ
By Sir Robin Knox-Johnston,
Lunch to-day will be boil in the bag Chicken Tikki Masala followed by a mini Christmas Pudding. Toasts are with orange juice, not by choice. The music is a classic collection as it has the Hallelujah Chorus on it which I associate with Christmas... [more]

Dalton caught in hurricane force winds
By Tim Kelly,
Graham Dalton has had a tough night, experiencing hurricane conditions with winds reaching top speeds of 70 knots. According to race director, David Adams, 'He was hand steering for a while as the pilots could not handle the force of the seas. Had a knock down and thrown against the life lines... [more]

Tony Bullimore on standby for Record attempt
By PR,
The final countdown has begun for Tony Bullimore’s challenge to break the 70 day barrier for sailing solo non-stop around the world - The programme is now on standby for a start from December 31... [more]

ARC - The Grand Finale, until Next Year
By Nancy Knudsen,
On the final night of the ARC 2006, the organisation of the ARC remains superb – an afternoon garden party is held among the trees of a local mansion, before the splendour of the prize giving, followed by more partying in the balmy tropical air, to the accompaniment of a local steel band.... [more]

Volvo 70 Rating penalty creates Hobart storm
By Rob Kothe,
Now almost on the eve of the Rolex Sydney to Hobart race, RORC is the centre of a storm when two of the main contenders for line and overall honours have been dealt a savage blow by having their handicap ratings suddenly and controversially increased.... [more]

US Sailing name their Sailing Athletes of 2006
By Marni H. Lane,
US SAILING, the American national governing body for the sport, has selected five athletes as sailing’s 2006 US Olympic Committee (USOC) Athletes of the Year for outstanding performance and achievement. SportsMan of the Year: Mark Mendelblatt - SportsWoman of the Year: Paige Railey - Team of the Year: Andy Horton and Brad Nichol - Paralympian of the Year: Rick Doerr... [more]

Fast gear guide from the 2006 505 Worlds at HISC
By 505 Class Assoc,
The 505 Class Association have released a Fast Gear Guide from the 2006 505 World Championships held at Hayling Island Sailing Club back in the summer. Rondar and Waterat hulls feature in the top ten positions with the oldest being a Waterat from 1994 and a Rondar from 1996 - Plus images from Steve Arkley... [more]

National 12 - The next 70 Years
By Zoe Ballantyne,
To help guide the class through another 70 years the Class Association is now conducting a national census of National 12 sailors past, present and future. It is the hope of the NTOA that this survey will be completed by as many people as possible, whether or not they have any current or historical link to the class - See the N12 at the London International Boat Show and will display N3502, a Big Issue design... [more]

Raja Muda images - better late than never
By Charlie Sergeant,
'It's been a long month' he said. 'The Raja Muda, the Monsoon Cup and the King's Cup all ran back-to-back, so I was stacking up photos faster than I could 'process' them.... [more]

Huge Laser fleet on Hobart’s Derwent River
By Peter Campbell,
Yachts sailing up the Derwent River in daylight hours late next week towards the finish line of the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race will have to keep an extra lookout for other sailing craft, including more than 250 dinghies contesting national championships.... [more]

Last chance to race at Hayling Island SC
By HISC media,
The Christmas Cracker Open event for Dinghy and small Keelboats will be the last chance to race at Hayling Island SC this year. The annual open event is open to dinghies and small keelboats and will take place at HISC on Saturday 23 December... [more]

Gale chases Saga Insurance to Fremantle
By Sir Robin Knox-Johnstone,
The good news is that we have a favourable wind I suppose. The swell has not been great but the seas became very rough and we got thrown around a lot. We also did some almost alarming surges, 27.6 knots on one occasion. That's very exciting, but its alarming because you are totally out of control and have to rely on the common sense of the boat to keep hurtling in a straight line and not decide to sheer off... [more]

Miranda Merron to build and campaign a Class 40
By Sophy Williams Ltd,
Miranda Merron has today announced that she and Peter Harding are currently building an Owen Clarke Class 40 at Jaz Marine in Cape Town with the aim of campaigning the boat on a diverse race circuit. Whilst the team and boat is funded by Peter, they are also seeking team sponsorship to make the most of the promotional opportunities on offer... [more]

Diabetes dismasted off Sydney Heads
By Jason Lo,
At around 2.45pm this afternoon, Wednesday 20 December, the mast on Ludde Ingvall’s 90 foot maxi Diabetes, an entrant in the 2006 Rolex Sydney Hobart, allegedly compressed and fell down during a training sail off Sydney Heads... [more]

Inaugural Combined Access Class World Champs 2007
By David Staley,
The Inaugural Combined Access Class World Championships will be hosted by the Whitby Yacht Club of Ontario, Canada, from August 30 to September 5, 2007. The Whitby Yacht Club has a 300 boat marina in a protected harbour located 48km east of Toronto on Lake Ontario. The town of Whitby has a population of 115,000 and a full range of visitor facilities with a range of accessible accommodation... [more]

470 Internationale - Sailors Support programme
By Rick van Wijngaarden,
The Programme will apply to the 470 World Championships 2007 in Cascais (Portugal) and 2008 in Melbourne (Australia) and aims at sailors, which have not participated in the 470 World Championships neither in 2005, nor in 2006... [more]

Wilsonian SC Winter Open Series 2006
By Roy Winnett,
Bright sunshine and a chilly light to moderate westerly was just right for the concluding race of the winter open series at Wilsonian Sailing Club on Sunday 17 December. 62 boats had contested the 13 race series, though one race was abandoned when the forecast gale turned up late during the lunch break... [more]

Liverpool Yacht Club Late Autumn Series
By Tim Fowle,
Liverpool Yacht Club held the fourth and fifth races in the Late Autumn Series on Sunday 10 December. The fourth race of the series should have been held on Sunday 3 December, but due to the heavy winds racing had to be cancelled by race control... [more]

Final day for Sydney International Regatta
By Sam Crichton,
The final day of racing at the Steve Jarvin Motors Sydney International Regatta and the predicted southerly arrived early. Lizzie Vickers from Great Britain came through to take third in the Laser Radial event which was won by Sarah Blanck of Australia... [more]

Lou's 44th trip to Hobart
By Lisa Ratcliff,
Lou Abrahams, skipper of Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race entrant Challenge, will compete in his 44th consecutive race to Hobart this year to equal the skippers’ race record set by his late, great sailing friend John Bennetto.... [more]

House of the America's Cup - your chance to buy a slice of Cup history
By Sail-World,
Sail-World readers can now purchase the of the first of a collection of America's Cup related DVD's produced by Mediawave. Entitled the 'House of the America's Cup', the DVD contains four short feature films produced for the historical exhibition at the 150th Anniversary of the America's Cup in Cowes. The DVD was compiled and produced by Larry Keating and Bruno Trouble and features a lot of rare and previously unseen film.... [more]

Gul launch Code-Zero ultimate racing system
By Katie Drummond-Dunn,
The new high performance racing apparel being launched at the London Boat Show will be the headline range for Gul on stand N318. Code Zero is the ultimate racing system for dinghy sailors... [more]

20 knot breeze for SIRS - Day 3
By Sam Crichton,
Day three of racing for the Steve Jarvin Motors Sydney International Regatta competitors started with a 10 knot easterly breeze which built to 20 knots and swung to the nor’east during the course of the day's racing for the 280 sailors in eight fleets, with the 61 boat Laser fleet racing in their respective gold and silver fleets after completing two days of round robin racing... [more]

The Postman doesn't always knock . . . .
By Sir Robin Knox-Johnston / GJN,
The 3,000 extra postman being employed this Christmas by the Royal Mail will no doubt be relieved to hear that Sir Robin Knox-Johnston will not be sending out his usual card list this year. This is assumed to be due to the lack of substantial forward motion being experienced by the nautical knight, rather than the removal of one of the more far-flung sub-post offices in the looming cuts... [more]

New Super-Zero series added to Skandia Cowes Week
By Peta Stuart-Hunt/PR Works,
The creation of a Super-Zero class with its own race series at Skandia Cowes Week 2007, is all set to entice the owners and skippers of the world’s largest and fastest ocean racing yachts to compete at next year’s event. The Super-Zero class has been created specifically for any boat wishing to race that is between 14 and 30 metres LOA and with an IRC rating of 1.420 and upwards, whether it has a fixed or canting keel.... [more]

CHN 95 has arrived in Valencia
By China Team,
The unloading was set for 6:40 15th December. Designers, technicians, team members, made up the 20 people waiting in the dawn light for the moment when CHN 95, would be unloaded from it's container ship, and would finally touchdown on Valencian soil. It was a grand moment, even if the unloading was scheduled for 8h30, but eventually took place at eleven.... [more]

Fiat wins second race of 18 Footer Club Champs
By Frank Quealey,
A dramatic upset for Asko Appliances (Hugh Stodart) who had led for almost the entire race before an incident late in the course allowed the current world champion crew in Fiat to grab victory... [more]

Patient Falcon takes Superyacht Cup in Antigua
By Kate Branagh,
The first Superyacht Cup Antigua based at English Harbour, the historic Nelson's Dockyard, Antigua completed the third and final day with a win for Patient Falcon. In second place came Kalikobass II (32 meter) and third The Maltese Falcon (88 meter)... [more]

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