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This year’s festival, on the weekend of 16 and 17 October, will be bigger than ever with a host of family-friendly maritime displays and activities. Visitors to the festival will see a diverse range of privately-owned heritage vessels, from graceful yachts and streamlined speedboats to tugs and workboats and tall ships HMB Endeavour and James Craig. And discover the skills of traditional maritime craftsmen including blacksmiths, rope knotters, caulkers and sail makers. Vessel registrations close 10 September 2010 with fees ranging from $50 (ashore) to $75-$150 afloat (depending on vessel size). The crew of the Reichel Pugh 63 which was launched just prior to the 2008 Rolex Sydney Hobart fired the first shot in the season’s opening event, the Audi Sydney Gold Coast Yacht Race, taking out the coveted IRC overall win. Loki, named after the Nordic God of mischief, made its big move around 14th hour, the point at which they led the standings until it was impossible for anyone to steal their crown. With the lights of the Gold Coast beckoning and the seas relatively calm, the silver and red hulled bullet from the Reichel Pugh design office finished with a beautiful evening nor’west breeze of eight knots.
It was an eventful race for the winning crew, arriving at Southport minus their bowman Tim Wiseman who underwent surgery in Sydney on his injured right hand. Richards acknowledged the crew injury and transfer at Newcastle (which added 3-4hrs to their race time) most likely cost them the longstanding record, but he’s more interested in the lessons learnt. Meanwhile in PHS Division 1, Nick Athineos and Rick Christian’s modified Steinmann 66, The Stick, formerly a two-time round the world Open 60, surfed into first place. PHS division 2 winner was Ian Sanford and Barrie King’s Northshore 38 Tartan flying the Greenwich Flying Squadron burgee. The crew, many of them Parramatta River skiff sailors, have had four attempts at the silverware, this time coming away with the spoils.
The arrival of Tony Purkiss and his five Newcastle and Lake Macquarie mates on the Swanson 36 Mister Christian built in 1982 as a one-off by one of the shipwrights working for Swanson Bros, signalled the end of the 25th Audi Sydney Gold Coast Yacht Race. Their finish time off Main Beach was 3.52pm on Tuesday, during the trophy presentation for the silver jubilee race at Southport Yacht Club.
During proceedings MC and recently elected SYC Commodore Rob Mundle took a moment to acknowledge the efforts of the one remaining boat still at sea. Some of the crew on board yachts bound for Hobart's Wooden Boat Festival speak of the injuries and strong headwinds that disrupted their journey south. Opposition Leader Bill Shorten questions the ethics of former Liberal MP Sophie Mirabella, who says a Victorian hospital missed out on $10 million in funding because she was not re-elected to the seat of Indi.


A native mouse that was thought to be extinct in New South Wales turns up on an outback station.
Australian journalist Peter Greste says he is humbled to receive the national RSL Anzac Peace Prize and proud to represent the ideals of press freedom. Victorian Agriculture minister assures game hunters government will amend hunting legislation before the next duck hunting season. The ACT Supreme Court grants bail to killer Danny Klobucar, so he can remain in a secure mental health facility rather than jail, while other charges against him are resolved. Rosalie Lalara is sentenced to five years in jail for stealing almost $500,000 in royalty payments from communities off the Arnhem Land Coast.
If you're traveling overland, then Hobart takes ages to get to as an assortment of trains, buses and a ferry will help find you here. The city has plenty of places to be a pedestrian, with street side cafes, bars and pubs to sit back and solve the world's problems. The Wooden Boat Festival takes place every year in Hobart and brings in throngs of people from around Australia and the world. Hobart has a lot of festivals year round, just check out the Hobart Tourist Information website for dates.
At the end of the Wooden Boat Festival, bagpipers played as each boat departed the harbor.
The new build of the Ian Oughtred designed ACORN 15’ ROWING SKIFF is nearing completion with just the thwarts still to go – and of course the endless sanding, painting and varnishing! The well-performed 1965 sloop Mister Christian (David Salter & Ben Gray) will be making the trip to Hobart again after a 44-year gap. It began as a casual dockside conversation late last year between two Sydney Amateur Sailing Club skippers. There will be a series of presentations by maritime specialists and opportunities to jump on a heritage vessel for a ride around Cockle Bay. According to skipper Mark Richards there is no nerve or bone damage to the index finger and Wiseman is expected to make a full recovery.
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Now it’s grown into a major project that should see at least eight classic yachts on the club register cruise “in company” to Hobart for the Australian Wooden Boat Festival in February 2013.Initially, only Mike Warner (Lahara, 1951) and David Salter (Mister Christian, 1965) intended to make the passage South together.


This is a fantastic way to network with other classic boat owners including representatives of the NSW Wooden Boat Association and the Halvorsen Club. But once their loose plan became known, they were quickly joined by Maurie Evans (Malohi, 1956) and Philip Brown (Anitra V, 1956). Lahara was built by the legendary Jock Muir at Battery Point, and has raced to Hobart five times.
Mister Christian (co-owned by Ben Gray), was the late Peter Kurts’ first ocean racer and has also done five Hobarts.
Anitra was one of the Halvorsen brothers’ most successful offshore yachts and won the race in 1957. Between them the four yachts have competed in 28 Sydney-Hobarts, most during the ‘golden era’ of the event between 1950 and 1970. In true SASC style, the group began to meet unofficially over lunch at the club on the shores of Mosman Bay to swap experiences and ideas for the trip. Originally owned by the late marine artist Jack Earl, the 37-foot Tasman Seabird classer is now skippered by his grand-daughter, Tiare Tomaszewski. Fidelis is well known to Tasmanians, having won line honours in the 1966 Sydney-Hobart race in record time. Built in New Zealand to a Knud Reimers design, the powerful 61-foot sloop is now owned by Sydney businessman Nigel Stoke.
The oldest active classic yacht on the Sydney Amateurs register to join the long sail to the 2013 festival is Martin van der Wal’s Hoana, built in 1925. The 30-foot gaffer should take the trip in her stride, having completed a world circumnavigation, including a stay in Tasmania, during the 1960s. Built in 1965, the tough little 28-foot raised-decker is co-owned by Sydney sailors Nigel Berlyn and John Barclay.
A modified Maurice Griffiths design, she’s won many regattas and club championships on Sydney Harbour.The cruise has no formal structure and is not an official activity of the SASC, but these eight yachts should make a unique sight together at the festival, all flying the distinctive ‘Amateurs’ burgee.



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