Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 16

Thread: 2017 Sydney Hobart

  1. #1
    despondent correspondent Photoboy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    SF Bay Area
    Posts
    11,481
    Blog Entries
    1

    2017 Sydney Hobart

    Black Jack makes most of cards she was dealt





    Black Jack, the light weather flyer of the four 100 foot super maxis racing for line honours in the 2017 Rolex Sydney Hobart took full advantage of the light, easterly conditions on Sydney Harbour this afternoon to lead her contemporaries out of the Heads.

    Beneath a moody, overcast sky, skipper Mark Bradford steered the lean, black hulled Queensland yacht through a textbook start while his big three rivals, LDV Comanche, Wild Oats XI and InfoTrack at times looked out of sorts.

    With 628 miles of racing ahead of her in the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s 73rd running of the race, LDV Comanche chose a safe, somewhat lonely start at the pin end of the line, unfavoured in this light easterly breeze. Raw power tomorrow, not her Harbour manoeuvres this afternoon, will win Comanche the race.










    Meanwhile, Black Jack timed her start perfectly, at full speed, when she crossed the line fourth from the pin in complete command.

    As the two raced down the Harbour on starboard tack, Peter Harburg’s Black Jack had Jim Cooney’s LDV Comanche covered. For a tantalising moment it appeared the giant red and black hull of Comanche could muster enough speed to break the cover, but Black Jack soon established that in this breeze, she had more than enough boat speed to dominate.

    Black Jack eventually rounded the first mark well ahead of Comanche, and the gap continued to widen as the two tacked towards the sea mark.

    Behind them, Mark Richards was hauling Wild Oats XI back from an abysmal start. With a minute to go he had found himself boxed in, and the Oatley family’s boat looked downright slow when she did eventually cross the line below and astern of her little sister Wild Oats X.

    It took the hundred footer five minutes to finally get past her 66ft stablemate, with a lethargic InfoTrack trailing them both – her preferred heavy breeze completely absent.

    With his silver-grey thoroughbred at last running free, Richards delayed his turn towards the sea for ages, heading towards Manly and tacking far closer to North Head than his rivals. It worked. When Wild Oats XI crossed Comanche half way out Richards was ahead. Now it was Comanche’s turn to look sluggish.











    At the sea mark Black Jack rolled out her big Code Zero and hugged the coast as she barrelled south through a wall of spectator craft. Eventually Wild Oats XI reached the mark in second place, but as her crew set their big head sail Richards opted to head further out to sea.

    Third came LDV Comanche, which almost came to a halt as her giant genoa filled with water like a balloon, the crew struggling to haul the dead weight of the sail back on board. At her stern was a small red protest flag, confirmed by Cooney in a call around 4pm. At the time of writing, the first sked had yet to start, when it is expected they will be informed there will be a protest - and on what grounds – but it appears it is to do with the crossing with Wild Oats XI.

    Next to the mark were Wild Oats X and InfoTrack, with Beau gest trailing them further north and to seaward of the rhumbline.

    With Black Jack close inshore and Oats and Comanche heading out, the first big tactical call has been made in what will be an absorbing line honours battle. Only one way will turn out to be the right way to go to set up for the transition to the nor-easter later this afternoon, but which one?

    Black Jack has to make the most of this early stage of the race. These are her conditions. LDV Comanche and Wild Oats XI will get theirs later. Bradford and Black Jack’s owner, Peter Harburg, will be feeling the first hour went very well. At 4.15pm this afternoon, Wild Oats XI’s navigator, Ian Burns, said Black Jack, LDV Comanche and themselves were in close contact.

    Burns said further he did not believe an incident took place between Wild Oats XI and LDV Comanche and therefore did not need to do a 720 degree penalty turn.

    As the super maxis accelerated south the smaller boats spread out between Sydney Heads, battling their way through the washing machine created by spectator boats trying to keep up with the favourites. Some will hug the rhumbline, others are already searching for a current further out to ride to Green Point.










    On a difficult day most had started this race as they would have planned. Only three yachts on the crowded second start line, St Jude, Smuggler and Jazz Player, were forced to return and restart correctly after jumping the gun.

    At 4.20pm Geoff Cropley reported from St Jude their disappointment at breaking the start and said, “We also lost all our instruments 12 minutes before the start, only our compass is working. We are sailing like dinghy sailors – by the seat of our pants.” Asked if they could repair, Cropley said, “Stewart Holdsworthy is working on it.” Cropley said they were sailing in an 8-11 east-nor-easterly breeze.

    Full list of entries and all information: http://rolexsydneyhobart.com/

    By Jim Gale, RSHYR media

    TRACKER
    " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella"



    h2oshots.com Photo Gallery

  2. #2
    despondent correspondent Photoboy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    SF Bay Area
    Posts
    11,481
    Blog Entries
    1

    Camanche Running Away From Fleet




    As expected, Jim Cooney’s LDV Comanche is leading the line honours race on the first morning of the 2017 Rolex Sydney Hobart, making the most of a strong north-easterly wind in Bass Strait and well ahead of the race record set by Perpetual LOYAL (now racing as InfoTrack) last year.

    (Fastest Race: 1 day 13h 31m 20s (Perpetual LOYAL, NSW) 2016)

    At 4am, just 15 hours into the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s 628 nautical mile race, LDV Comanche was already more than 50 miles south of Gabo Island, sailing at consistent speeds of 20 to 25 knots, and 48 miles ahead of the position last year’s record breaker, was in at this time of the race.

    In fact the leading six yachts are all ahead of the record pace, including last year’s overall winner, Giacomo, now racing as Wizard for American brothers Peter and David Askew.

    This is an astonishingly fast race, as was predicted on start day.




    What was not expected though, is that in these conditions, which are perfect for the big, powerful LDV Comanche, her rival super maxis Wild Oats XI and Black Jack would not only be so close to LDV Comanche at this stage, Wild Oats XI has actually taken a little time out of the big black and red leader overnight.

    At 5.50am, Wild Oats XI is 14 miles behind LDV Comanche. Late on the first night she was trailing by more than 20 miles.

    Black Jack is a further 20 miles astern of Wild Oats XI, Beau Geste another 10 miles, then another 3 miles astern lies InfoTrack. The V70 Wizard is just 2 miles further from Hobart and then comes Wild Oats XI’s little brother, Wild Oats X, some distance back and not yet into Bass Strait.




    In these conditions it was feared that LDV Comanche would just blast away from her rivals. Their challenge at this stage was to stay in touch so that when conditions lightened in the final leg of the race they would be close enough to try to haul her back in on the Derwent River. Wild Oats XI and Black Jack are meeting the challenge.

    It is always good to be in front, but Wild Oats XI is putting enormous pressure on the leader, as is Black Jack. Any mistake on LDV Comanche will not go unpunished.

    In these great running conditions, the remainder of the fleet is strung out along the rhumbline, the shortest route to Hobart. This is a flat out drag race. No-one is wandering too far from the pack looking for better breeze further out to sea this year.





    The TP52s are having a ball. Celestial (Sam Haines) skippered by Sean Kirkjian, Quest (Bob Steel), Ichi Ban (Matt Allen) and Rockall (Christopher Opielok) are in the top five overall, but it is early days and they are not having it all their way. Craig Carter’s Carkeek 46, Indian (WA), is leading the charge for the Tattersall Cup, doing her best to rain on the TP52 parade.

    Basically, the further south a boat is, the more wind it is getting, and the breeze across Bass Strait throughout the day is going to be strong, in the 25 to 35 knot range. Fantastic for fast planing, but in winds this strong, the super-maxis and the TP52s are an exhausting handful. Keeping the boat in one piece will be day’s great challenge for every crew in the fleet.

    Full list of entries and all information: http://rolexsydneyhobart.com/

    By Jim Gale, RSHYR media






    http://www.rolexsydneyhobart.com/tracker/
    " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella"



    h2oshots.com Photo Gallery

  3. #3
    despondent correspondent Photoboy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    SF Bay Area
    Posts
    11,481
    Blog Entries
    1

    Wild Come From Behind Win For Wild Oats




    Mark Richards has steered the Oatley family’s Wild Oats XI to her ninth Rolex Sydney Hobart line honours victory after a protracted battle with Jim Cooney’s LDV Comanche on Tasmania’s River Derwent this evening, reclaiming the race record Anthony Bell’s Perpetual LOYAL took from her last year.

    Wild Oats XI smashed last year’s record of one day 13hrs 31mins 20secs by after crossing the Castray Esplanade finish line at 21:48:50 this evening, in the new time of one day 8hrs 48mins 50secs, taking 4hrs 42mins 30secs off Perpetual LOYAL’s time.




    This is a record ninth line honours for Wild Oats and a third record – nobody in the history of the race has achieved this honour before.

    But will she hold on to line honours? LDV Comanche is flying the protest flag she raised after an incident after the start and then advised in the first sked she would be protesting Wild Oats XI. LDV Comanche must file her protest within six hours of finishing.






    But in the meantime, Richards and his 20 crew members were celebrating their victory to huge cheers at the dock in Hobart tonight, spraying Champagne Mumm over each other as the huge crowd waited for LDV Comanche to also finish.

    The J.H. Illingworth Trophy looked set to be in the hands of Jim Cooney, who recently purchased the 2015 boat dubbed the ‘aircraft carrier’ due to her girth. Boat and crew revelled in the strong north-easterly wind, but in the end, Wild Oats XI held her ground and showed her superiority in the extremely light breeze both boats found on rounding Tasman Island that at times stopped both yachts in their tracks.

    A full story with quotes will follow.

    For all information: http://rolexsydneyhobart.com/

    By Di Pearson, RSHYR media


    ********************************


    Crossing the line 26 minutes after Wild Oats XI, LDV Comanche will take the provisional line honours winner to the protest room.

    When Oats’ skipper Mark Richards rushed over to the quay to see whether the protest would go ahead, Cooney told him: “Yes, I’m going to pursue it.”

    “OK, no worries, mate, no problem,” Richards said.

    Later, Cooney explained the incident shortly after the start.

    “It was a port/starboard infringement. We were the right-of-way boat: they were the give-way boat.

    “We hailed starboard; they were the give-way boat and they left it until far too late to tack and they tacked right in our water. We had to take evasive action or possibly take both of us out of the race.

    “We could have taken their backstay out; they could have broken our bowsprit.”

    He said a few minutes in the race could have made all the difference.

    The protest will be heard by an international jury in the next two days.

    ************************************************** ****









    “The first win was sweet, but this was sweeter,” an ecstatic Sandy Oatley declared on the Hobart dockside as the Oatley family’s Wild Oats XI eased into King’s Pier at the end of her remarkable come-from-behind provisional Rolex Sydney Hobart line honours victory.

    “We expected LDV Comanche to take off, and it did, but we hung onto their coat tails, and we were very surprised,” he said.

    At the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia a week ago LDV Comanche’s navigator Stan Honey worried that this race could be decided on the Derwent. LDV Comanche had to be so far ahead of the lighter, leaner Wild Oats XI and Black Jack when she rounded the Iron Pot at the entrance to the Derwent that they could not reel her back in when the wind went soft on the river, he thought. For their part the others had to hang on, stay in touch, and strike when LDV Comanche’s strength became her Achilles’ heel.

    “They had the superior boat, the most powerful boat by a country mile,” the victorious Wild Oats XI skipper Mark Richards declared.

    “We were in touch coming around Tasman Island and all of a sudden we saw a dream come true: a Derwent River with no wind in it. Nothing comes for free, all that power doesn’t come for free and in the Derwent the one thing you don’t need is power.”

    The line honours story of the 2017 Rolex Sydney Hobart was not the nail biting finish on the Derwent; it was how Wild Oats XI managed to be just three miles astern of LDV Comanche as they rounded Tasman.











    “For our boat to be in touch with Comanche in these conditions was really impressive,” Richards said. “We did a great job. “

    “’We didn’t leave much on the table,” Oats’ tactician Iian Murray admitted. “We pushed the boat to the limit. We knew we would lose at the beginning of the race; we thought we could catch up when it got really windy, and we did, and we knew the Derwent was going to be tricky.”

    “We are actually faster than Comanche in really strong conditions, pushing the boat to its limits,” Richards said. “We had issues with torn sails, but it is all a part of it. These big boats chew through the gear in these conditions.

    “It was their turn, then it was our turn, then theirs, and as it turned out the final chapter was our turn.””

    Richards conceded that the protest flag at LDV Comanche’s stern has cast a shadow over this result, but he is adamant it will come to nothing.

    “I think we were totally innocent at the incident at the start. It is not the America’s Cup, it is the Hobart. The rules are different. I am not concerned at all.”

    For Jim Cooney, this race is not over yet. He will take the provisional line honours winner to the protest room.

    When Richards rushed over to the quay to see whether the protest would go ahead, Cooney told him: “Yes, I’m going to pursue it.”

    “OK, no worries, mate, no problem,” Richards said.

    Later, Cooney explained the incident shortly after the start.

    “It was a port/starboard infringement. We were the right-of-way boat. They were the give way boat.

    “We hailed starboard; they were the give-way boat and they left it until far too late to tack and they tacked right in our water.

    “We had to take evasive action or possibly take both of us out of the race. We could have taken their backstay out; they could have broken our bowsprit.”

    He said he did suspect the soft weather in the Derwent would be Comanche’s Achilles heel.

    “It is a very wide boat and a very big wetted surface area. It is difficult to keep it moving in very light air. We had a different forecast to that and didn't think it would be a problem,” Cooney said.

    By Jim Gale and Bruce Montgomery, RSHYR media

    ***********************
    " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella"



    h2oshots.com Photo Gallery

  4. #4
    Had an inkling there might be a battle in the Derwent.

  5. #5

  6. #6
    despondent correspondent Photoboy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    SF Bay Area
    Posts
    11,481
    Blog Entries
    1

    Constitution Dock Getting Lively



    All was quiet this morning at Hobart’s famous Constitution Dock, seven big boats home, five inside last year’s Rolex Sydney Hobart race record, last year’s overall winner, Wizard (then sailing as Giacomo) and Wild Oats X, the little sister of Wild Oats XI the latest two arrivals in the early hours of this morning.

    Wizard, recently purchased by American brothers, Peter and David Askew, finished at 01:13:43:47, just outside last year’s record and this year’s. However, this quick V70, finished the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s (CYCA) at 2:43:47 this morning, nearly two hours better than last year’s time, vindicating the Askews decision to buy her. They plan taking her back to the States where they will race her in all the majors.









    Now attention turns to the main trophy for the 628 nautical mile race, the Tattersall Cup, which will likely be decided in the Derwent – what other way would we have it?

    Currently Matt Allen’s new TP52 Ichi Ban is in the hot seat. She is due to cross the finish line at Castray Esplanade in Hobart any time after 7.30am this morning. Allen’s nemesis, Quest is also in the running and due to finish a couple of hours after Ichi Ban.




    Owned by Bob Steel, Quest, also a TP52, won this race in 2008 when Steel owned her, and again in 2015 when owned by Paul Clitheroe and renamed Quest. Clitheroe still owns the boat, but he and Steel have been sharing her for the major races in the past year.

    With the handicaps in place, Quest is currently in third place, so will need to put some pace on and hope the Derwent again stops Ichi Ban in her tracks, as it did to both last year. In between the two is the man we all would love to see win the race, Bruce Taylor and his Caprice 40, Chutzpah.

    This is the Victorian dentist’s 36th Sydney Hobart and he has come so close on numerous occasions, including 2014 when he finished second overall, missing the win by less than an hour to Wild Rose.








    This morning at 7am, Chutzpah, whose crew includes Taylor’s son Drew sailing his 26th Hobart with his Dad, is sitting in second place overall, currently three minutes behind Ichi Ban on corrected time.

    Before they left the dock on Boxing Day, the genial Taylor said, “Pray for me, pray for us – the forecast looks almost as good as it can get.”

    On Ichi Ban, Allen, president of Australian Sailing, reiterated: “Quest will be our biggest threat. We haven’t seen Balance out of late, but that will be the TP52 to beat. They always do exceptionally well.”

    In other news, Eric Marsh’s Blunderbuss reported she had retired from the race this morning after the boom broke on the Beneteau First 40. She brings retirements to four, with 91 yachts still racing

    Full list of entries and all information: http://rolexsydneyhobart.com/

    By Di Pearson, RSHYR media
    " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella"



    h2oshots.com Photo Gallery

  7. #7
    Breaking: Wild Oats XI penalised one hour because jury has found she did not keep clear of LDV Comanche at Sydney Heads and did not do a two-turn penalty as required by the rules. This hour penalty is longer than the 26 minutes that separated Wild Oats XI and LDV Comanche.

  8. #8
    Dumb move at the start.

    Dumber move not clearing themselves afterwards.

  9. #9
    despondent correspondent Photoboy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    SF Bay Area
    Posts
    11,481
    Blog Entries
    1

    LDV Comanche Awarded Line Honors After Protest




    LDV Comanche has been awarded Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race line honours after its protest against Wild Oats XI was heard by the international jury late this afternoon.

    International Jury Chairman, John Rountree said: “Wild Oats XI on port had to keep clear of LDV Comanche under Rule 10. Wild Oats XI failed to keep clear while tacking – Rule 13. LDV Comanche luffed to avoid a collision – Rule 14. Wild Oats XI did not comply with Sailing Instruction (S.I.) 20.1a to do a two-turn penalty for breaking the rule of part 2 occurring prior to clearing mark Zulu. The decision is in lieu of disqualification, penalised a time penalty of one hour to be added to her elapsed time in accordance with Sailing Instruction 20.1b and SI 22.1.”




    Like Wild Oats XI, LDV Comanche finished inside last year’s record time, so the new record is one day 9 hours 15 minutes 24 seconds. She finished 26 minutes behind Wild Oats XI, but the latter’s one hour penalty means Comanche takes line honours by 34 minutes from Wild Oats XI.




    After the hearing, Jim Cooney said: “I think it’s entirely fair and reasonable that the jury acted as they did. When you’re dealing with boats of this size and this calibre, we are at the elite level of our sport, and the boats have to be conducted responsibly in fair respect of the conditions and the impact that your manouvres might have.

    “I felt very strongly that wasn’t the case,” Cooney said. “The rules are there to protect the people and the boats and if we can’t rely on that it’s a difficulty in the sport.”

    Cooney said the way they won the race has not taken any gloss off the sport. “The race is about how you conduct yourself and how your crew performs and how the boat performs. We feel we sail to the best of our abilities and (to win) justified our boat’s performance and the crew’s preparation.”

    Wild Oats XI’s skipper, Mark Richards and Sandy Oatley representing the Oatley family, were gracious in defeat.







    Richards said, “Obviously we’re very disappointed, but the international jury had a job to do. They saw the incident the way they saw it, we saw it a little bit differently, but the result is the result and we have to respect the decision of the jury.”

    Sandy Oatley added: “We’d just like to congratulate Jim Cooney and his crew for their success, and move forward.”

    The line honours presentation is taking place at the Race Village at 7.15pm this evening.

    Full list of entries and all information: http://rolexsydneyhobart.com/

    By Di Pearson, RSHYR media
    " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella"



    h2oshots.com Photo Gallery

  10. #10
    despondent correspondent Photoboy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    SF Bay Area
    Posts
    11,481
    Blog Entries
    1

    Crew Buster Conditions For Most



    Though overall honours in the Rolex Sydney Hobart Race may have eluded them this time, there is a mutual respect among the skippers of the gun fleet of 50-footers for the battle in which they engaged. For it is in this group, each yacht perhaps half the size of a supermaxi, that the reward for excellence and seamanship finds its reward.

    After finishing the race, especially one as fast and taxing as this one, these skippers pay respect to their victor with a warmth and sense of humour that ensures most, if not all, of them will be back in this Cruising Yacht Club of Australia ocean race for years to come.

    We should know later today whether the latest addition to their 50-foot fleet, Matt Allen’s spanking new TP52 Ichi Ban, has indeed won the race. Allen led Quest, Hollywood Boulevard and Mascalzone Latino into the Derwent this morning to be the overall leader in the clubhouse.

    The other three filed in, not with their tails between their legs, but jubilant for Ichi Ban. That is one mark of respect, but there is also their respect for the sea for they tell tales that would make most mortals cringe.









    Ray Roberts (the Farr 55 Hollywood Boulevard):

    “Everybody always says that when it’s off the wind the whole race that it’s a fast run and an easy run, but really it’s a very tough.

    “It is probably the most dangerous angle for these boats. We had boat speeds of 30 knots and, if somebody happens to get knocked overboard or falls in the water it is hard to go back and pick them up. So, you have to be very cautious and sometimes sail a little conservatively but still keep pushing the boat.”

    Roberts said that from a safety point of view one is a little apprehensive “but from a fun point of view you’re surfing down the waves, you have great speed, and it doesn’t beat the boat up”.

    “The boat gets the least beating when the wind is from behind. It’s when you get the hard southerlies and the boat is crashing into the seas, falling of the big waves that you break the boat, but this is like a crew buster.

    “Being a grand prix racing boat, we don’t sail with small spinnakers, we’ve got the big stuff up, pushing the boat on the edge. We blew up our number one spinnaker. That will cost us about $15,000 but that is the nature of the game. We were surfing down a wave into the back of another wave with the boat loaded up and the sail just exploded. So, we had pieces of spinnaker floating all around us.”












    Roberts said this race was a rarity.

    “It never always blows from the south, it never always blows from the north, so this was a once-in-a-lifetime thing. They happen, but they are a long time apart.

    “Even if you have sailed the perfect race, without luck you will lose, All the stars have to align. We couldn’t have sailed much better.”

    Bob Steel (the TP52 Quest):

    “Matt (Allen) deserves to win – it’s his 28th Hobart. I’ve had my share (Steel has won it twice), so I am jubilantly disappointed for us but happy for Matt.

    He agreed with Roberts it was a very hard race.

    “People think running (rather than going to windward) is easy, but it isn’t. There’s a lot of pressure on the boat and the crew.

    “It’s a short race, but a challenging one. You have to work constantly, to keep the boat moving, keep your spinnaker flying without damaging it.”

    This year’s race had been challenging.

    “Our port steering wheel is gone: the boat broached under spinnaker doing 20 knots in 30 knots of wind. Our sailing master Mike Green fell and took out the port wheel on his way through (it completely sheered off) and a couple of other bodies went through the rail but they were tethered and back on the boat quickly. It took half an hour of gardening to get back on track.








    “We are lamenting, but congratulations to Matt.”

    Back to Roberts and Hollywood Boulevard’s dice with the Italian Cookson 50 Mascalzone Latino.

    “We had such a great battle with Mascalzone Latino all the way up the Derwent. They were just in front of us coming around Tasman Island, but we had a speed advantage in the end and got them.”

    Matteo Savelli - skipper Mascalzone Latino

    “It was a very fun race. It’s our first time here, a very nice race. We didn’t sail the first part of the race very well; the beginning wasn’t so good for us … but it was fantastic.

    “In Europe, we don’t usually sail in these sort of conditions. We expected more upwind in the Hobart.”

    By Bruce Montgomery, RSHYR media

    http://www.rolexsydneyhobart.com/standings/
    " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella"



    h2oshots.com Photo Gallery

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •