Boating and Boats - a tough week on the water

05 May 2008                              To reply to this email click here

Editorial, May 5, '08.

Seven days. A week, a week that will remain unforgettable for many. In two tragic incidents, eight people whose primary aim was having fun on the water are no longer with us.

Six dead on Sydney Harbour in the early hours of Thursday morning; two dead at Pier 35, Port Melbourne, on Saturday afternoon. We cannot help but silently offer our sympathies and condolences to all involved, most of whom are no doubt asking, ‘Why'?

Why indeed. The ‘whys and wherefores' will not be determined until comprehensive police and waterways authority investigations have been completed.

However, I'd like to make one specific point; the last thing needed now is knee-jerk reactions from politicians.

Politicians, as they have proven many times over many years, will demand any action if they think it will curry favour with the media and translate into a few votes.

Perhaps some boating licence regulations need to be looked at and I'm certainly in favour of a practical or hands-on component being included.

But please, no ridiculous new laws just to appease some sections of the community.

Hundreds of thousands of people go boating every week and it remains a remarkably safe past time.

Sadly, we kill more of our fellow Australians on the nation's roads and highways every week than boating related incidents account for over long periods.

Life, however goes on and this week anglers will be looking forward to the annual Toyota Fraser Island Fishing Expo and we profile Australia's finest female wake boarder, she of the famous surname, Amber Wing.

Earthrace the bio-diesel fuelled power trimaran is almost two days ahead of the Round the World record pace as she thunders towards Puerto Rico. The Powerboat-World team are providing the satellite phone recording system that skipper Pete Bethune is using to do his daily audio reports. It is working perfectly, Pete is using a state of the art noise cancelling microphone so we can hear him above the twin Mercruisers and the rush of water against the carbon hull.

We have news and pix from the GP of Portugal and a new record in the 72nd Bridge to Bridge race yesterday, we will have a full report tomorrow.

Good news, bad news and sad news, is the place to keep in touch.

Bob Wonders

224 kph average for Bridge to Bridge race
Bob Maxwell,
The 72nd Hawkesbury River Bridge to Bridge powerboat race was won yesterday by Ricky Howard's hydroplane ‘Hyperactive'. She started the 112km course at Brooklyn and crossed the finishing line on the Hawkesbury River at Windsor in 29 minutes: 47 seconds, to beat the previous race record, set by the same boat of 31 minutes 14 seconds.... [more]

Jay Price wins GP of Portugal
Steve Michael Reporting,
Jay Price of the Qatar Team scored a well earned first ever victory at the U.I.M. F1 World Championship 10th Annual Grand Prix of Portugal. Australian David Trask had held third spot earlier in the event and was close enough to rub paint with Jay Price in their battle for second, until his engine expired on the 24th lap.... [more]

Earthrace ahead of Round World Record
Rob Kothe,
As darkness falls in the Caribbean, the 78 foot biodiesel fuelled trimaran Earthrace skippered by Pete Bethune is just 360 miles short of San Juan the capital of Puerto Rico on the second 2315 nautical mile leg of their 2008 record attempt.... [more]

U.I.M. F1 C'ships - Team Abu Dhabi on pole
Philippe Stiernon,
Team Abu Dhabi has a new weapon and his name is Ahmad Al Hameli as the young driver from Abu Dhabi came up with a flying lap of a 42.94 second time to take his first ever career pole position and will lead the field of 22 drivers for tomorrow's 10th Annual Grand Prix of Portugal. Cappellini and Andersson to start second and third.... [more]

Two dead in Melbourne boat explosion
Bob Wonders,
A cruiser which had just been filled with 200-litres of gasoline has exploded at Pier 35 in Melbourne killing two people and leaving a woman fighting for her life in hospital.... [more]

New Superyacht Visa means Open Waters for workers
Jeni Bone,
The new super yacht visa has been greeted with unanimous approval from industry and is already attracting business to Cairns.... [more]

Police investigation continuing
Bob Wonders,
What has been described as “a complex investigation” is continuing with NSW Police examining all possible aspects of the Sydney Harbour disaster that claimed six young lives in the early hours of last Thursday morning.... [more]

Boat licenses – regulations differ Australia-wide
Bob Wonders,
In NSW, no licence at all is required provided the boat does not exceed 10 knots.The boat could be an offshore racer, capable of 60, 70 or 80 knots, but if the driver stays below 10 knots it's all legal.... [more]

Earthrace storms towards Puerto Rico
Six metre seas, a submarining trimaran and a fuel spill. It's been a tough 24 hours for New Zealander Peter Bethune and his Earthrace crew.... [more]

Swedish Driver Pierre Lundin joins Chinese Team
Steve Michael,
French driver Philippe Dessertenne is going to have a new team mate this weekend with the arrival of Swedish driver Pierre Lundin replacing Peng Lin Wu for this weekend's 10th Annual Grand Prix of Portugal on the Arade River in lovely Portimao.... [more]

Amber wings her way to success
Bob Wonders,
When your mother is a former world water ski race champion; when your father is a former Australian water ski champion; when your uncle is a living legend of the sport with five world championships to his credit, well, you'd be pretty handy at watersports, right?... [more]

Superyachts Stymied in Queensland
Jeni Bone,
The postponement of the inaugural Hamilton Island Series has brought into sharp focus the impediments to these massive spending vessels visiting Queensland waters. But there are some breakthroughs on the horizon.... [more]

Americans launch program to educate women boaters.
Bob Wonders,
Many women are concerned that they might not be able to bring a boat safely to port in their male companion was disabled. A committee has been formed that will develop and validate a dealer-based program aimed at teaching the basic principles of boating safety and boat handling to women.... [more]

Harbour death toll rises to six
Bob Wonders,
Australia awoke to the shocking news on Thursday morning that a runabout, allegedly overloaded and with 14 people aboard, had slammed into a fishing trawler off Bradley's Head.... [more]

Marina will put Batemans Bay back on the map
Jeni Bone,
Batemans Bay, approximately 282 km south of Sydney and 130 km South East of Canberra, will have a new Marina that will bring business and the public together with a myriad of services.... [more]

Conference To Unveil the Latest in Marine Safety
Ursula Bishop,
With 41 high profile speakers, 12 specialist session streams and innovative product demonstrations and exhibitions, the Marine Safety Conference 2008 has become a highly anticipated industry event. More than 300 delegates are expected to attend the conference in Adelaide from the 26th to the 29th of May.... [more]

New Simrad IS20 multifunction instruments
Sandman Media,
Designed for both power and sail boats, the range comprises six meticulously-developed and engineered instruments – two digital and four analogue heads – which can be simply installed and integrated on any vessel via Simrad's NMEA 2000®-based SimNet data-sharing network.... [more]

Toyota Fraser Island Fishing Expo ready to fire
Bob Wonders,
More than $200,000 will be ‘up for grabs' when the annual Toyota Fraser Island Fishing Expo gets under way on May 24. The prizes on offer include a brand-new Toyota Hilux four-wheel drive, and entry as always is firmly restricted to 1500 anglers and organisers say the field is ‘filling fast'... [more]

Ultra Anchors - Sanctuary Cove Debut
Aaron Soden-Taylor,
Ultra Marine Products Pty Ltd will be unveiling the leading European range of stainless steel Ultra Anchors & Specialist Anchoring Equipment at the 2008 Sanctuary Cove Boatshow. Handmade in Europe (not cast), the Ultra Anchor range has stunning appeal and is an advanced new generation anchor with many innovative and patented features.... [more]

Boat Asia 2008 - at Keppel Bay
Guy Nowell, Sail-World Asia,
There is no doubt that Marina at Keppel Bay is a very attractive location – a deep water harbour that used to be the Keppel Island shipyard, with waterfront condominiums just across the water on the site of the former dry docks, high-rise apartments on the drawing board and phase 2 of the marina to be completed by next year... [more]

2010 World GP Hydroplane C'ships for Taree?
Mick McDonald/,
Taree Aquatic Powerboat Club's committee will decide within the next two months whether to apply to host the 2010 World GP Hydroplane Championships.... [more]

It's the Mooring Spring that Saves the Boat
BW Media,
If you are leaving your boat for any length of time in a marina, it's the mooring spring that will protect the vessel in a high gale, when there's no-one there to check the moorings - or when the marina personnel are too busy retrieving boats in trouble to check YOUR boat... [more]

Australian debut for Fairline's stunning Targa 64
Harbourside Media,
Fairline Sydney, a division of the Chapman Marine Group, will debut the latest creation from UK builder Fairline Boats at the forthcoming Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show (May 22-25). The vessel in question is the Targa 64 ‘Gran Turismo', 19.5-metres of unabashed luxury and 35-knot performance.... [more]

Class 1 World Powerboat Championship 2008
The Class 1 World Powerboat Championship is an exhilarating spectacle....
For more details and news for this event, go to:

2008 Australian Offshore Superboat Championships

The Offshore Superboat Championships is Australia's ‘Formula One on water'....
For more details and news for this event, go to:

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