30th anniversay regatta a resounding success
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.