Over the past 72 years, the Sydney Hobart has become not just an icon of Australian summer sport, but also an icon of yacht racing worldwide.
This year’s edition of the Sydney Hobart Yacht Race will see 110 teams, including 31 international entries, head to the starting line on Boxing Day. Amongst these entries are 4 super maxis, all of which have been rigged by Southern Spars: Infotrack, Wild Oats XI, Comanche and Black Jack. Each will be looking to dominate in what is widely regarded as one of the world’s toughest blue water races.
Black Jack, now owned by Queenslander Peter Harburg, will be clashing once again with old rival Wild Oats XI, the record eight-time Sydney-Hobart line honours’ champion. Wild Oat’s skipper Mark Richards will be looking to make it a third time lucky in this race, as his super maxi has failed to finish for the past two years! However, Black Jack recently won the first round against her rival in the 2017 SOLAS Big Boat Challenge, and will be looking to triumph again in this latest rematch. Whilst Infotrack and Comanche, the winners of the last two editions, will both be there to spoil the party, aiming to repeat their previous success.
Infotrack, the winner of last year’s edition under the guise Perpetual Loyal, will be competing under new owner Christian Beck. Beck will be hoping to win the race whilst keeping his yacht’s record as the fastest yacht in Sydney Hobart history. Whilst Comanche, the 2015 line honours’ winner, has been recently bought by Australian yachtie Jim Cooney after her shock sale by Jim Clark. Cooney is no amateur when it comes to powerful maxi yachts, being the previous owner of the former Sydney-Hobart line honors winner Brindabella, and it looks like he is back again for another shot at glory.
This twist means that Boxing Day will see a thrilling battle of the Aussies, with all four maxis on the starting line owned by Australians. However, when it comes to the winner we don’t expect any more twists.
The last time someone got on the podium of the Sydney to Hobart race without Southern Spars was 2008. For the ninth-consecutive year, this race will see our record extended.
What is for sure is that this 628-mile race is definitely not to be missed, and we can’t wait to see who will be the first to arrive at Constitution Dock in Hobart.