Skip to main content

Racing: Maximum Effort in Tasmania

  • Author:
  • Updated:
    Original:
The maxi Wild Oats XI stretches out her lead in the final stages of the race

The maxi Wild Oats XI stretches out her lead in the final stages of the race

The Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race is best known for the wild weather that often marks the Bass Strait between Tasmania and mainland Australia. However, Tasmania’s Derwent River, which serves as the homestretch into the finish in Hobart, can be no less daunting with its heart-breaking calms. In recent years, the Derwent has also become the site of some nail-biting finishes between those in search of line-honors, as the Maxi Class has become both more numerous and increasingly competitve.

This time around, no less than four of the 100ft thoroughbreds found themselves duking it out following the roughly 600-mile run down from Sydney, including longtime race veteran Wild Oats XI, Black Jack, Comanche and InfoTrack.

At one point a mere four miles separated all four boats as they made round Tasman Light. After that, though, Wild Oats XI found her stride, eventually pulling away to a lead of nearly five miles leaving Black Jack and Comanche to battle it out for second and third. In the end it was Wild Oats XI taking first with an elapsed time of one day, 19 hours and 7 minutes, Black Jack beating Comanche by just over a minute, and InfoTrack finishing about 20 minutes later.

The win marks the ninth time Wild Oats XI has taken line honors in the race. It also brought to an end a three-year bad-luck streak, during which the boat had to retire from the race two years in a row due to mechanical problems and was protested out of first place in the third.

The Reichel Pugh 66 Alive closes in on the overall win in the 2018 Rolex Sydney Horbart

The Reichel Pugh 66 Alive closes in on the overall win in the 2018 Rolex Sydney Horbart

Meanwhile, winning the Tattersall Cup for best finish on corrected time was the Reichel Pugh 66 Alive, owned by Tasmanian sailor Philip Turner, making only the third time in 74 races that a Tasmanian boat has come out on top. In all, 85 boats took part in the 2018 running of the 628-nautical-mile Boxing Day classic. For complete results, visit rolexsydneyhobart.com.

Photos courtesy of Rolex/Studio Borlenghi

March 2019

Related

Spons-Sailing-Convention-for-Women-CA-April-1-photo-1-2023-12_06_22

Sailing Convention for Women Returns

After a three-year pandemic hiatus, the Sailing Convention for Women is back with expanded learning opportunities taking place at the Bahia Corinthian Yacht Club in Corona Del Mar, California on April 1, 2023. Some of the workshop topics include Suddenly Singlehanded, Steer with ...read more

thumbnail_Jump-1

The Marblehead-to-Halifax Ocean Race Returns

It’s been four years since racers last sailed the cold North Atlantic in the venerable Marblehead-to-Halifax race—and finally, the wait is over. The Boston Yacht Club and the Royal Nova Scotia Yacht Squadron have announced the 39th Marblehead-to-Halifax Ocean Race set for this ...read more

Wendy-2048px

Meet Wendy Mitman Clarke, Editor-in-Chief of SAIL magazine

Learn more about how she and the magazine’s team are committed to building on SAIL’s legacy of more than 50 years as an authentic voice about the sport and the sailing life, delivering stories that educate, inspire and inform. ...read more

maintenance-02

Cruising: Old Sailors Never Die

“Old sailors never die, they just get a little dinghy.” It may be a hoary old joke, but one of my problems at age 79 is I can no longer get easily in and out of a little dinghy, and neither can my (several years younger than me) wife. For this, and various other reasons I will ...read more

01-LEAD-DSC_0953

The Mighty Compass

Here’s to the humble magnetic compass, without a doubt the sailor’s most reliable instrument onboard. It’s always there for you and with the rarest of exceptions, always operational. Yes, I love my chartplotter, autopilot, radar, and AIS. They help me be a safer and more ...read more

02-En-route-Jost-Van-D

Chartering: Swan Song in the BVI

Joseph Conrad once wrote, “The sea never changes.” And while this may or not be true, something most definitely not open for debate is the fact we sailors, “wrapped in mystery,” as Conrad put it, are continually changing—whether we like it or not. I found myself thinking these ...read more

220307FP51_1JML0332

Boat Review: Fountaine-Pajot Aura 51

If you can sell more than 150 catamarans off-plan before the resin has even hit the fiberglass, you must be doing something right. Despite costing around $1.1 million once fitted out and on the water, Fountaine-Pajot’s new 51 has done just that. The French yard has been at it ...read more

00LEAD-IMG-9035

Ready to Fly a New Sail

It’s a typical humid, southern Chesapeake Bay summer day when I show up on the doorstep of Latell & Ailsworth Sailmakers in the one-stoplight, one-lane-roadway, rural tidewater town of Deltaville, Virginia. I’m late getting here to work on a new jib for my 29-foot, Bill ...read more