Sails : Sails 24 February March 2014
CUSTOMS HOUSE CORNER 044 ROLEX / CARLO BORLENGHI Despite some prophets of doom among writers for the daily newspapers, the damage to boats and bodies was relatively limited and most boats and crews found their way to Hobart by various methods of transport for yet another great celebration of 'The Great Race South'. Thousands of Tasmanians and visitors from interstate and overseas strolled Hobart's dockside, enjoying the spectacle of nearly 120 yachts that sailed into the southern capital in ocean races from Sydney, Melbourne and Launceston and other local festivities including the Taste of Tasmania, now bigger and better than ever. Yachties' favourite waterfront hotels such as the Customs House did a roaring trade, as did Battery Point's famous watering hole, the Shipwrights Arms. Organising the finish of the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race is always a major task for the Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania, with some 200 volunteers again involved in tasks ranging from physically finishing the fleet (and also the Launceston to Hobart and Melbourne to Hobart race fleets), guiding them to their berths in Sullivans Cove, staffing the information centre at Constitution Dock, and manning the radio room at the club and the race management centre from the start on Boxing Day to when the last boat crossed the line on New Year's Eve. This summer the team under RSHYR finish co-ordinator 'Biddy' Badenach also had to find special accommodation for the dozen yachts in the Clipper Round the World Race, the brightly painted Clipper 70s certainly adding to the colourful spectacle around Sullivans Cove. Planning is already underway at the RYCT for this year's 70th Rolex Sydney Hobart, with expectations of a fleet of 120 boats, including even more supermaxis keen to take on the champion Wild Oats XI and celebrate the history of the Great Race South. With bigger fleets also predicted for the Melbourne to Hobart and Launceston to Hobart races to join in the celebrations, we could see close to 200 yachts berthed in Sullivans Cove on New Year's Eve. This year's Rolex Sydney Hobart Race marked yet another fine sailing effort by David Pescud and his crew of the Lyons 54 Sailors with Disabilities, the 11th Hobart race for the boat and the 22nd race for skipper Pescud. Among the crew was 19-year-old Grace Kennedy from Sussex Inlet on the NSW South Coast. Grace has Spina Bifida and uses a wheelchair for mobility on shore. During the rugged race south, Grace, like other crew members in the Faceboat program had to scurry and 'bum' their way around the deck -- the result plenty of bruises but big smiles when they reached Hobart. RSHYR Finish Co-ordinator 'Biddy' Badenach happened to be in the Liaison Centre at Constitution Dock when Grace's father Phillip asked if it was possible to obtain a large AS IS THE CUSTOM EDITOR AT LARGE PETER CAMPBELL ROAMED THE WATERFRONT AS THE OCEAN RACING FLEETS SAILED, IN SOME CASES LIMPED, INTO HOBART AT THE END OF TOUGH BATTLES AGAINST GALES AND ROUGH SEAS. FLYING THE FLAG Above: Dockside scene in Sullivan's Cove. Opposite page from the top: Grace Kennedy, one of the crew of Sailors with Disabilities; David Kellett accepting his 40 Hobart medallion from Tasmanian Premier Lara Giddings; Colourfully dressed crewman from the Clipper 70 Great Britain received his trophy from Lara Giddings.
Sails 23 December January 2014
Sails 25 April May 2014