Offshore Yachting : Offshore Yachting Dec-Jan 2016
ROLEXSYDNEYHOBARTYACHTRACE2015ROLEXSYDNEYHOBARTYACHTRACE2015 SKIPPER 056 GIVE YOUR BOAT A BOOST WITH THE ADDED INTELLIGENCE OF LIGHTHOUSETM II - NOW SMARTER THAN EVER WITH TURN-BY-TURN NAVIONICS AUTOROUTING NAVIGATION. LIGHTHOUSE II ALLOWS YOU TO SEE CLEARLY WITH MULTIFUNCTION DISPLAYS AND STEER EASILY WITH EVOLUTION 9 AXIS AUTOPILOT SYSTEMS. SMART BOAT? MORE LIKE GENIUS BOAT. Images for illustrative purpose only. dedicated in many ways, and every race is different. Then there’s the significant challenge of Bass Strait, which makes it an achievement just to conquer that element of the race. “Overall the race is very rewarding and Brindabella is a great Hobart boat – strong and reliable. It would be a shame to see her sitting at the dock on Boxing Day.” Despite the complexities of the IRC handicapping, which Cooney points out are unfavourable for IMS boats like Brindabella, he believes if things go their way, they’re in with a chance. “Boats older and younger than Brindabella can rate reasonably well, but we are caught in the middle. But we have a reasonable chance at the top five if there is consistent and strong breeze. Brindabella is built to take the rough stuff and she can be pressed hard while the lighter boats are thinking about breakages.” Cooney and his crew are not believers in totems or charms, content to make their own luck. “Staying alert for 60 hours makes the luck,” he quips. Sam Haynes is the owner/skipper of Celestial. Having done five Sydney Hobarts, he is looking forward to this edition with a thoroughly revamped yacht. “I have had a few different yachts. The current Celestial is a TP52, ex-Wot Now and Shogun. My previous boat was also Celestial, a Rogers 46. I won last year’s Bluewater Point Score with that yacht. I bought this yacht in April and have done a lot to her. We have a new sail wardrobe, repainted the boat – looks a glamour – refaired and painted below waterline, which will add performance, installed new deck grip and a lot of new upgraded running rigging as well as various improvements to on-deck management of ropes and so forth. It goes on, but currently the yacht is in good order.” Haynes has a strong record of achievements in various offshore events, including third overall in the 2013 RSHYR, first in the Bluewater Point Score in IRC, ORCI and PHS 2014; a winner of all handicaps in the Sydney Gold Coast Yacht Race 2014 and State IRC Champion 2013. “And we won the Bird Island Race three years running.” For him, the Hobart stands alone for its iconic start and the fact that it’s anybody’s race. “It’s a race where you get the most changeable conditions and there it’s not over until it’s over. The fleet that turns up is always the best and you know that everyone has been preparing and training for this race. Then there is the start: Boxing day, on Sydney Harbour – pretty hard to beat! Finishing in Hobart and having a New Year’s Eve party on the deck of the yacht as a celebration. The crowds and media are great. “The race is the toughest we have and you have to be ready for any and all conditions. Just doing the race is a commitment. Getting results is something of which the crew and I can be proud.” Not daunted by the many obstacles to mounting a team, Haynes says it’s all worth it at the finish. “Boat preparation and training are the main challenges, and the costs involved – it’s an expensive exercise. Last, but not least is the demand on family who have this race hanging over Christmas day and the holidays. My kids do love being down in Hobart for the finish, and my eldest son sails with me as well, but not in the Sydney Hobart as he is only 17 years old. “He was on board when we won the Gold Coast race, and at 16, he was the youngest winning crew ever, apparently. He has delivered the yacht back from Tasmania. So we do look forward to being in Hobart as well as the race, but it is still hard on everyone around Christmas.” Celestial will have about 75 percent of the crew from previous years and some new faces, but key crew are the same. “Just to name a few, there is Ben DeCoster from Hoods Sails who has been with me for years and is a key person on the boat. Kevin Clarkson is the boat captain, Colin Janes is ROLEX/DANIELFORSTER “The very best features of this race can be perceived as the worst aspects while enduring them. At the end of the day we are so privileged to compete in such a magnificent sport, see the amazing coast line and share experiences with our fellow crew and competitors, that it is not long before we forget the hard times and look forward to the next race” Roger Hickman, Wild Rose TEAM EFFORT Skipper Jim Cooney with crew and family on Brindabella.
Offshore Yachting Oct-Nov 2015
Offshore Yachting Feb-Mar 2016