Offshore Yachting : Offshore Yachting Feb-Mar 2015
Over the many years of covering the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race I have had the pleasure of personally congratulating most of the winners at Hobart’s Constitution Dock, but few results have been so well deserved and pleasing to me than that of Wild Rose and her owner Roger Hickman in the 70th annual race. Not to mention the efforts of his navigator Jennifer Wells. Both are good friends. I’ve known Roger for decades and have long appreciated his dedication to the sport of sailing and his sound advice to me on writing about ocean racing and other facets of our sport. Roger is a fellow Tasmanian, but has spent much of his life at sea in the merchant marine or based at sea in Sydney, where he is a member of the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia. Roger also retains his membership of the Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania where he did much of his early sailing and remains a strong supporter of Tasmanian yachting. I will always recall taking a wonderful photo at Constitution Dock of Roger and his late father Jim after Roger’s first Tattersall’s Trophy win. Jim, a past Commodore of the Royal Yacht Club Tasmania passed away some years back and, sadly, Roger’s mother died just a couple of weeks before his latest win in the 70th race. Unfortunately, I was not at the finish of the 70th Sydney Hobart (away in Victoria at the time) to personally congratulate Roger but we exchanged text messages and I had a long chat with Jennifer, who gave me a graphic description of Wild Rose’s race, including a spectacular broach. It’s been an outstanding couple of seasons for both Roger and Jennifer, and Wild Rose, the 30-year-old Farr 43. In 2013, Jennifer was named Crew down the rhumbline 076 Person of the Year at the CYCA Ocean Racer of the Year Awards and at the 2014 Awards she was named as Ocean Racing Navigator of the Year. Roger was awarded the prestigious Ocean Racer of the Year with Wild Rose winning the Blue Water Championship, the Cape Byron Series and the Tasman Performance Series for 2013-2014, with Jennifer as his navigator. Now, to cap it all, they combined again, with an excellent crew, in winning the 70th Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race, an outstanding performance for a real Corinthian crew. Well done! Another old sailing mate, Phil Molony has had a great year, too. At 73 years, Phil was named Ocean Racing Veteran of the Year, then notched up his 25th Sydney Hobart Race in the 70th edition, skippering his Archambault 40 Papillon. Also achieving his 25th Sydney Hobart Race was Matt Allen, president of Yachting Australia, past CYCA Commodore and newly elected President of the Australia Day Regatta, WINS AND AWARDS Editor at LargE Peter CamPbell appLauds racE and award winnErs in thE 70th roLEx sydnEy hobart yacht racE. rolex/DanielForSTer skippering his latest Ichi Ban. We were crew mates many years ago aboard Lou Abrahams’ Challenge II in the Kenwood Cup in Hawaii and I had the pleasure of working closely with Matt when he was Commodore of the CYCA. Another past Commodore honoured for his contribution to the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race was Martin James who, during his time as a flag officer and commodore worked hard to bring Rolex onboard as race sponsor and also in upgrading race communications, including the high-tech position reporting system. Again, I worked closely with Martin when I was media director of the Sydney Hobart and well appreciate his dedication to the CYCA and the race. Martin James and ‘Biddy’ Badenach, a past Commodore of the Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania, were awarded the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race Meritorious Service Award for their outstanding contribution to the race at the 70th race prizegiving at the RYCT. ‘Biddy’ has been RSHYR finish co- ordinator for the past 17 years, heading a group of some 200 volunteers from Hobart yacht clubs who operate every facet of the race finish, from manning the Castray Esplanade finish box, crewing patrol boats, staffing the liaison centre at Constitution Dock and being part of the Race Committee overseeing the huge event. Looking ahead to this year’s 71st Rolex Sydney Hobart I hear that the Clipper Race will include the 628 nautical mile event as a leg of their circumnavigation race, with the CYCA expecting an overall fleet of 80 to 90 boats, a good fleet bearing in mind the usual drop-off after a significant event such as the recent 70th race. The good news, too, is that Rolex will continue their major sponsorship for at least another decade. Rolex also sponsor the equally famous Fastnet Race in England, sailed over 608 nautical miles. This year’s race will mark 90 years since the first Fastnet Race in 1925. Not the 90th race, of course, as the Fastnet is held every second year, starting off from Cowes on the Isle of Wight and finishing off at Plymouth after rounding Fastnet Rock off the southern tip of Ireland. There has been an exceptional take- up for the 90th anniversary race as just 24 minutes after the online entry system opened at midday on January 12 more than 300 boats had registered for the 2015 Rolex Fastnet Race. By the end of the day a total of 375 boats had signed up for the race which starts on Sunday, August 16. IN FULL BLOOM The crew of Wild Rose holding their winnings including the Tattersall’s Cup and Rolex timepiece.
Offshore Yachting Dec-Jan 2015
Offshore Yachting Apr May 2015