Sydney Hobart TP52 Success
The 64th Rolex Sydney Hobart has been a milestone with a high-quality fleet of 100 boats including eleven overseas entries, an unexpectedly close line honours battle at the head of the fleet between the maxis Wild Oats XI and Skandia and four of the sensationally fast downwind TP52s filling the first four placings overall on handicap.
Bob Oatley’s canting-keeled design Reichel/Pugh 98 Wild Oats XI took line honours for a record fourth-successive year after trailing Grant Wharington’s Don Jones-designed canting-keeled Skandia for most of the race. While the two maxis slowed in lighter winds along the Tasmanian coast to be denied the course record, the TP52s hardly faltered and finished within five hours of them.
Bob Steel’s Quest won the race’s major trophy the Tattersall’s Cup for the overall winner on IRC corrected time, from Alan Whiteley’s Cougar II. Graeme Wood’s Wot Now was third and Syd Fischer’s TP52 Ragamuffin fourth.
See TP52 Class – TP52 Archive on this website for the history of these yachts and owners.
Steel praised his crew saying they had, ‘put in a tremendous effort in beating the strong competition in this year’s race’, especially his sailing-master Michael Green, who has crewed with Steel in the Admiral’s Cup as well as this race, including the 2002 win.
Syd Fischer was recognised with a medallion for completing his 40th race. Fischer, who is 81, in previous Ragamuffins, won the Tattersall’s Cup in 1992 and took line honours in 1988 and 1980. His current TP52 Ragamuffin finished second overall in 2007.
2x Overall Winner Quest. Below at the rock formation known as Organ Pipes.