30th an­niver­say re­gatta a re­sound­ing suc­cess

Whitsunday Times - - ON THE WATER -

FROM the kegs of beer handed to sailors on ar­rival to the nightly func­tions on Front Street, the 30th Audi Hamil­ton Is­land Race Week (AHIRW) was all about re­ward­ing the com­peti­tors who have made the re­gatta a re­sound­ing suc­cess.

This year, sailors from the 157 com­pet­ing boats were wel­comed back from each day’s sail­ing with sausage siz­zles on the dock, free ice and a rub- bish col­lec­tion ser­vice, all pro­vided by the event man­age­ment team. There were live bands on stage each night and the lay day pool party at Cat­s­eye Beach was once again a pop­u­lar event. On the sail­ing side of the re­gatta, winds were frus­trat­ingly light for each of the six race days. Cour­ses were short­ened to suit the con­di­tions, which in­cluded a glass-off on the fi­nal day.

In the IRC rac­ing di­vi­sion, Hamil­ton Is­land owner Bob Oatley’s two yachts, Wild Oats X and XI, came 4th and 6th re­spec­tively. Wild Oats X was skip­pered by Swiss bil­lion­aire Ernesto Bertarelli and his Amer­ica’s Cup crew in­clud­ing tac­ti­cian Brad But­ter­worth.

Other Whit­sun­day boats com­pet­ing this year in­cluded Bruce Ab­solon’s Spirit of the Maid (Per­for­mance Rac­ing Di­vi­sion 1), Hamil­ton Men­tor and Jump (Per­for­mance Rac- ing Di­vi­sion 2), Eureka II, Mista Gybe, Con­dor and Ham­mer of Queens­land (Cruis­ing Di­vi­sion 1), True Love (Cruis­ing Di­vi­sion 2), Plun­der (Cruis­ing Di­vi­sion 3) and Adrenalin, Bril­liant II, Idle Time, Krys­tal and Ruby Char­lotte (Non­Spin­naker Di­vi­sion 2). Lo­cal sailors Mike Keyte and Paul Mitchell also sailed the re­gatta aboard the Sun­shine Coast mul­ti­hull Box Of­fice, which came first in its di­vi­sion.

Full re­sults are avail­able at www.hamil­ton­is­landrace­week.com.au.

PIC­TURE PER­FECT: The crew of Shogun at the 30th an­niver­sary of Hamil­ton Is­land Race Week.

COM­PE­TI­TION: Swiss bil­lion­aire Ernesto Bertarelli (cen­tre) and his Wild Oats X crew, also took part in a tug of war on land, where two teams com­peted to drag an Audi down Hamil­ton Is­land’s Front Street.

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