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Rolex Sydney Hobart- A sensational start from top supermaxis +Video

by Rob Kothe and the Sail-World Team on 26 Dec 2013
Wild Oats XI at the start of the Rolex Sydney Hobart Race Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi
After a sensational start to the 2013 Rolex Sydney to Hobart, the Mark Richard’s skippered Wild Oats XI just headed Anthony Bell’s Perpetual Loyal to the first mark.

After a luffing incident Perpetual Loyal was carrying a protest flag at Zulu mark. There was no indication as to whether the protest would proceed to a Hearing after the race finish in Hobart.

The fleet headed south in 15 to 18 knot south easterly and has made steady progress.

Just north of Wollongong, inside the rhumbline Grant Wharington's Hart 100 Wild Thing is notionally leading the race.

Abeam of her but a mile back on the computed course to Hobart is Bob Oatley’s Wild Oats XI, who moved through to take the overall lead, from Wild Thing just over four hours after the start.

Two miles astern of her is Antony Bell’s Loyal. Outside of them Ragamuffin is travelling faster but is a couple of miles astern.

Keeping her company impressively is Karl Kwok's 80 footer Beau Geste, Ahead of Peter Harburg’s Black Jack and outside of them is Jim Delegat’s Giacomo.

Some four miles astern of Loyal is Mat Allens new 60 footer Ichi Ban, she trailed the Cookson 50fter Pretty Fly III (Colin Woods), with Olympic Silver medalist and World 49er Champion, Peter Burling (NZL) aboard. Pretty Fly III was lying in 10th place on line honours, but dropped back as the boats out to the east came through with increased pressure.

Close to the rhumbline but travelling more slowly is Bill Wild’s Wedgetail and Jim Cooney’s Brindabella.

While in the early stages of this race it appears that the boats following the rhumbline have done well the boats out wide are definitely sailing in more pressure and are likely to sweep into the lead in the next few hours.

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