Report courtesy Greg Doolan as published WMYC “Soundings” Magazine.
Brisbane Yachts join the 70th Sydney to Hobart Race pre-start Parade of Sail
Greg Doolan, WMYC (Sandpiper/Karunda)
An invitation to The Parade of Sail preceding the 70th Sydney to Hobart Race 2014
In 2014 the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia (CYCA) conducted the 70th Sydney to Hobart Race (SHR). To celebrate the contribution made by participants in the early years, the CYCA invited vessels with an historic link to the event to take part in a Parade of Sail.
In the weeks leading up to Boxing Day, about 30 yachts committed to sailing in the parade. With last-minute entries, a fleet of almost 40 led by HMAS Advance sailed from Rose Bay around the “Sow and Pigs” and back to the Sydney–Hobart start line. The yachts were paraded in order of their first entry in the SHR. From the race fleets of the first ten races (1945 to 1954) ten yachts were present for the Parade of Sail. Included in that select group were two Brisbane-based yachts, Wraith of Odin (five SHRs, first in 1952) and Laurabada (one SHR, 1954).
While each and every participant in the parade has its own history of the SHR, and its own history of survival as an historic vessel, these two yachts were the only members of the fleet not based on Sydney Harbour. Wraith of Odin and Laurabada sailed in company from Brisbane to join the Parade of Sail.
Wraith of Odin and Laurabada sail to Sydney
I was approached by Keith Glover, owner/skipper of the 57ft Alden ketch Wraith of Odin and asked if I was available to assist in delivering her to Sydney to participate in the Parade of Sail on Boxing Day. I was keen to assist Keith and also to indirectly assist my good friends Ivan and Anne Holm. Their 49ft ketch Laurabada had also been invited. The yacht underwent an extensive refit in 2013–14 and had only been ready for sea trial in the first week of December. Ivan (skipper), Anne (first mate) and Paul (can fix anything mechanical) Bonase were working 20-hour days to prepare Laurabada for the proposed trip. Meanwhile, Keith was very busy preparing Wraith of Odin for an off-shore run without certainty of crew or a suitable berth in Sydney. After many phone calls, Keith secured a berth. Wraith of Odin still needed one more crew member, and I was able to secure the valuable assistance of WMYC member Sam Johnson (Jazz) as the fourth crew member for Wraith of Odin. As long as the weather cooperated we had a confirmed trip. Our crew consisted of Keith Glover (skipper), Greg Doolan (navigator), Sam Johnson (foredeck) and Andrew Rommelse (runner). I provided navigation preparation and weather watch for both yachts and Wraith’s catering for our trips south. A weather window opened up for departure from the Southport Seaway early on Sunday, 21st December. The two skippers and I settled on the yachts leaving Moreton Bay early on Saturday the 20th to suit the tides in the shallow western passage between Stradbroke Island and the mainland. Wraith of Odin, drawing over 7ft, passed the shallows with some inches to spare. Laurabada, 2 hours behind and drawing 6ft, did some minor sand dredging while navigating to the Broadwater.
For Saturday night Wraith moored at the Southport Yacht Club, and Laurabada moored at the Ephraim Island Marina where my gaffer Sandpiper is penned. All the sailors shared a meal at home with my wife and myself on Ephraim. Early next day on Wraith we hanked on our selected headsail, got underway and exited the Seaway at 07:00. Laurabada’s crew, who had been up till 1am putting bearings into mainsail batten cars, followed us out of the Seaway a few hours later. The 24 hours between the Gold Coast and Coffs Harbour/Trial Bay were very comfortable with a light following breeze. The yachts were not in sight of each other on Monday morning, but regular phone contact was maintained. While there was of course no race, it seemed somehow very important that the distance between the boats remained constant. Late in the afternoon, Wraith was visited by a large pod of dolphins that kept company with us for about 30 minutes. At this time we carried yankee, staysail, mizzen and mizzen staysail. Given our small crew, Keith felt it prudent to keep the enormous mainsail on the boom. During the afternoon the breeze filled to 18 knots from the north, and both yachts were making 8 to 10 knots over the bottom with the advantage of around 1.5 knots of southerly set. When we passed Seal Rocks at dusk and turned to starboard onto the rhumb line to Sydney, we had the wind dead astern and a solid, quartering sea. Aboard Wraith we dropped the mizzen and the mizzen staysail, and finally the jib staysail. As a precaution, we placed two reefs in the main as it lay on the boom in case we were forced to hoist it later. Laurabada also approached the evening with a conservative sail plan. Monday night was far from pleasant; in addition to a difficult sea state, our course took us through 20 to 30 ships. Some were underway and some were in a holding pattern (of sorts), awaiting access to Newcastle Harbour. Shortly after dawn on Tuesday, 23rd December, we had a very welcome, clear view of Sydney Heads. Despite our communal sleep deprivation, Wraith’s crew all insisted she carry full sail up the Harbour in the 10- to 15-knot northerly. Laurabada followed us into Sydney, still about 2 hours behind.
Wraith of Odin and Laurabada in Sydney
Wraith of Odin moored at Birkenhead Point Marina, and Laurabada moored at the Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron. Christmas Eve was spent cleaning, tidying and polishing. After Christmas celebrations of various forms, the yachts arrived at the Parade of Sail marshalling area dressed in their code flags and ensigns. It was an absolute privilege to be part of the parade. The participants, particularly from the first 20 years of racing, were an absolute who’s who of classic Australian yachting. Queensland was the only provider of non-Sydney based yachts to the parade, and I was personally proud to have assisted in getting two of our local classics to their places in this historic event. The crews from Brisbane included one member of the QCYC, one member of RQYS and two members of the WMYC. I think the two skippers, Keith Glover and Ivan Holm, deserve particular praise for their efforts and perseverance in seeing these two grand classics from Moreton Bay take their place celebrating Sydney to Hobart Race history.
Laurabada will shortly head south; she is scheduled to be in Hobart for the biennial Wooden Boat Festival next February. Wraith of Odin will remain in Sydney for the Australia Day Regatta.
22nd January, 2015
Thanks to CYCA for their media materials below.
CYCA media release 21/12/2014:
“Up to 40 yachts will fittingly pay tribute to yachts and crews that have played a major role in the evolution of the Sydney Hobart Yacht Race, from its modest beginnings back in 1945 to its current status as one of this nation’s greatest sporting events.
“Historic RAN vessel HMAS Advance will lead the fleet off. Two famous yachts from the inaugural race in 1945, Kathleen Gillett (kindly been made available by The Australian National Maritime Museum and to be skippered by Phil McKendrick), and Wayfarer, now owned by Peter and Gayle Smith, will lead the yachts.
“Avidly watching will be the two surviving men who sailed in the 1945 race; Geoff Ruggles, who as a 21 year-old crewed or Wayfarer, and 88 year-old John Gordon, who sailed aboard Winston Churchill still actively sails an Access Dinghy on Sydney’s Northern Beaches.
“Others joining the 38 confirmed yachts include Archina (Joe Skrzynski and Bill Ferris) from the 1945 race, Christina (David Foster) and Defiance (Nicole Shrimpton) from the 1946 race. Tiare Tomaszewski will pay tribute to her grandfather, the late great Jack Earl, owner of Kathleen Gillett and subsequently Maris, named for his daughter and Tiare’s mother…
“Joining the fleet too is Sean Langman’s Maluka, the grand dame of the Rolex Sydney Hobart fleet. Built in 1932 and measuring in at just 9 metres, she is also the smallest and the only entry in this year’s 628 nautical mile race to take part in the Parade of Sail.
“Representing boats from those early races right up to the more modern versions sailed in the Hobart over the years; it should leave a lasting impression on spectators.
“The whole fleet will be dressed for the occasion and lead the yachts from a start point off Bradleys Head, on to a mark near the Sow and Pigs off Watsons Bay, and return to Bradley’s Head. All yachts will be under power.”
Order for the Parade of Sail (as published by CYCA):
Order for the CYCA Parade of Sail
Boxing Day – Sydney Harbour
Order Boat name 1st Hobart Race
. HMAS ADVANCE Leads the Parade
An Attack Class Patrol Boat built in 1967 in Queensland. Served extensively in northern Australian waters as an armed patrol boat. On loan from the RAN, acted as start boat for numerous early Sydney to Hobart Races. Now part of the fleet of historic vessels maintained by the Australian National Maritime Museum
1 KATHLEEN 1945
Colin Archer designed, wooden gaff-rigged yawl – 13.4m (44ft) owned and skippered in the inaugural race by artist, Jack Earl – a founding father of both the CYCA and the Sydney to Hobart Race. Kathleen became the second Australian yacht to circumnavigate the globe. Restored and gifted to the ANMM by the Norwegian Government as a Bi-centennial gift in 1976.
2 WAYFARER 1945
12.2m (40ft) Alden Bermudan wooden ketch, built for owner Peter Luke, also a founding father of the CYCA and Sydney to Hobart Race. Now owned by Peter and Gayle Smith who are restoring her to her former glory.
3 ARCHINA 1945
A 15.9 (52ft) wooden hulled Bermudan ketch built in 1933for Phil Goldstein. One of the trio of inaugural race entrants that amazingly are still very much part of the Sydney yachting scene. Now owned by businessmen, Joe Skrzynski and Bill Ferris. Competed in 5 SHR’s, the last in 1994.
4 CHRISTINA 1946
A 33ft 5” Cutter sloop, built in 1932 by the Halvorsen brothers. Owned and sailed by dentist, Bob Bull. Handicap winner of the1946 race. Disqualified the following year after an incident off Sydney Heads. After a string of owners, now owned by David Foster.
5 DEFIANCE 1946
International Class 8 metre – 49’6” wooden hulled veteran, built in 1935. Completed 5 SHR’s – best result 3rd in 1946. Now proudly owned by Nicole Shrimpton
6 GYMEA 1948
A Barber/Larson designed 33-footer built in 1938. Completed the 1947 & ’48 SHR’s with owner-skipper Geoff Carter at the helm. Now owned by Erin & Jeremy Sharp.
7 MARGARET RINTOUL 1949
47ft wooden yawl Designed by Philip Rhodes. Launched in Sydney 1949 for Mr AW Edwards. Competed in 5 SHR’s. 1st on elapsed time twice 1950/51 – 1951 time set a record that would stand for 7 years. Now owned by Bruce Gould and Paul Keerigan she sails regularly in classic events on Sydney Harbour
8 LAHARA 1951
33’4” sloop built in 1951. Came 2nd that year in her inaugural SHR. Completed 6 SHR’s. before embarking on an extensive cruising program. Current owner Mike Warner competes regularly in Classic Fleet racing with the SASC.
9 WRAITH OF ODIN 1952
57ft Alden Ketch, built in 1951 by Alf Jahnsen in Tuncurry NSW. Built for Dr Brian O’Brien, she competed in 5 SHR’s between 1952 and 1969. Sold in 1997 to current owner, Keith Glover who has completely restored her. to her former glory. Splined in 2010 by the son of the original builder, using unused original planking, cut on the same bandsaw his father used. Winner of classic events in Australia and New Zealand
10 LAURABADA 1954
A 49ft Bermudan ketch built in 1954 by owner/skipper Ivan Holm Snr. Completed the 1954 SHR. A Queensland sailing icon, she has completed 50 consecutive Brisbane to Gladstone races – 1953/2002. Ivan Jnr and wife Anne have restored LAURABADA, and are taking part in this Parade, as a stopover on their cruise to Hobart for the Wooden Boat Festival.
11 ANITRA V 1956
38ft sloop designed and Built in 1956 by Trygve and Magnus Halvorsen. Has competed in 13 SHR’s – winning the race on handicap in 1957. Current owner, Philip Brown races regularly with the SASC.
12 CAPRICE OF HUON 1957
A 13.72m (44’6”) Robert Clarke designed sloop built in 1951. Competed in ‘numerous Sydney Hobarts. Best result, 1972 – 2nd to Ted Turner’s American Eagle. Represented Australia in Admiral’s Cup. Current owner, David Champtaloup has Caprice on the market.
13 LOLITA 1957
35ft sloop, built in 1946. Competed in 7 SHR’s. – the most memorable in 1961. Dismasted in Bass Strait, and drifting, she was eventually taken in tow by a submarine, named Trump, and arrived safely in St Helens. Owner for 52 years Nick Cassim, continues to race Lolita every Saturday with SASC.
14 SOUTHERLY 1958
A 35ft Charles Peel designed sloop, built in 1938, and known as “The Great Floating Hotel” she was owned and raced for 53 years by the fabled Don Mickleborough. She competed in 14 SHR’s, with two 3rd placings. John ‘Shero’ Sheridan and Rob McAuley are currently ‘caretaking’ the old girl.
15 MALOHI 1959
A 35ft Lion Class sloop, built in 1955 for Nev McEnnally. He did six Sydney Hobarts before selling to sailing legend, Syd Fisher. He did 4 SHR’s in her. Current owner, Maurie Evans, presently races Malohi in the SASC Classic Division.
16 MARIS 1960
Tasman Seabird – 11.15m designed by Allan Payne, built by Jock Muir in Hobart in 1958 for the fabled Jack Earl. Completed in a number of SHR’s in the 1960. Ownership passed to Ian Kiernan in 1971. He cruised her extensively in the South Pacific and competed in 4 SHR’s. Now owned and sailed by Jack’s granddaughter, Tiare Tomaszewski in partnership with Lord Howe islander, John Green.
17 SALACIA 1962
A 41ft designed by Sparkman & Stephens, built in Hobart by Jock Muir in 1962 for CYCA member, Bob Rusk. Purchased in 1963 by Arthur Byrne, she competed in 10 SHR’s, 1962 – ’69 and 1971 –’72. Best placings, 4th in ‘’64; 4th in ’67; 3rd in’69. Now based in Pittwater where current owners David & Jenny Lovell have cruised and raced her for the past 28 years.
18 VALHALLA 1965
A 37’6” Sloop – built in 1964. Competed in 4 SHR’s with her best placing of 9th in 1966. Very neglected, current owner, Rory O’Connor has spend years completely re-building the old girl. He now races her with the Blues Point Yacht Club.
19 FARE THEE WELL 1965
Alan Payne designed 40 footer – built in 1964 for Russ Williams to contest the 1965 Admiral’s Cup trials. Competed in 3 SHR’s – 1965,’67 and’70. Beautifully built, in a deconsecrated church in Eagle Farm, Brisbane by “Bluey” Williams she is now moored in Pittwater where her current owner Clive Gregory takes part in club races and classic regattas.
20 MISTER CHRISTIAN 1965
A Swanson 36 built in 1965 for the late Peter Kurts. Specially designed for the SHR, she competed five times, with a best placing of 4th. Current owners David Salter and Ben Gray campaign, with a great deal of success, Mister Christian in the SASC’s Classic Boat fleet.
21 CAROUSEL 1965
A Seabird Class 35 –footer built in 1964. Competed in the SHR twice, in 1966 and ’68. Present owner David Malone is an active member of the Drummoyne Sailing Club.
22 FIDELIS 1966
A 61 foot ‘flying machine’, built in New Zealand in 1964, designed by the German naval architect, Knud Reimers. Owner, Jim Davern sailed her to line honours in the 1966 SHR. She completed 6 SHR’s, plus took numerous line honour and handicap placings in Tasman and Australian offshore races. Clocked up some 200,000 nm’s cruising. Current owner Nigel Stokes has her looking good, and still sailing like a witch.
23 SYLPHIDE 1967
A 30ft 7” sloop, designed by Len Randal, built by Trevor Gowland in 1963. She has competed in 5 SHR’s. Her current owner is Sydney-based Catherine Kay.
24 DUET 1970
A Swanson 36 built in 1966. Competed in Sydney Hobarts between 1968 – 1974. At one stage owned by former Commodore of the CYCA, Jo Diamond. Joe apparently sailed Duet to Noumea, where she went on the rocks and was left as a total wreck. The current owner, James Dalgleish, salvaged and rebuilt her, and sailed her back to Australia.
25 STORMY PETREL 1970
A Sparkman & Stephens ‘one tonner’ built in 1970 for Charles Curran. Chartered by Syd Fisher, Stormy Petrel won the 1971 World One Ton Cup Championship. She competed in 10 SHR’s. the majority with owner/skipper Charles Curran, and for 3 races with the current owner Kevin O’Shea.
26 SURAYA 1978
A Sparkman & Stephens 37 – built and launched in Tasmania in 1967. Purchased by Carl Scriber in 1988, went on to complete four Sydney Hobarts. Best result – second in a division. Owner currently uses Suraya to cruise the east coast of Australia and to take part in classic boat regattas.
27 WHITE POINTER 1979
37’ sloop built in 1977 to the One Ton IOR Rule for Keith Le Compte, who still owns the boat. Competed in 4 SHR’s. Best result, 21st in the 1978 Race. A regular entry in the Sydney to Mooloolaba races. 15 starts to her credit. Still competes in regattas and regular cruises along the coast.
28 IMPECCABLE 1981
A three quarter tonner, designed by Doug Peterson, built by Doug Brooker in 1980 for John Walker, she proved herself one of Australia’s finest and most successful small ocean racers. Owner skipper, John Walker campaigned her in at least 25 SHR’s. He still competed regularly until at the age of 86, earlier this year, he passed away. His crew are taking part in this Parade as a tribute to their old mate and skipper.
29 MUCH ADO 1982
A 34ft sloop designed by Ed Dubois built in 1982. Competed in a number of SHR between 1982 and 1986 campaigned by owner/skipper, J. A. Rickard. Changed hands a number of times. Now owned by a Sydney syndicate headed by Tony Wither.
30 SAGACIOUS V 1985
A Farr 40 built in 1987 for Gary Appleby. One of the first carbon fibre yachts built by John McConaghy. Competed in 10 SHR’s – Runner up on handicap, 1989. Top finisher 1990. Represented Australia in international regattas around the globe. Current owner, David Hundt preparing her for the 2015 SHR – the 25th anniversary of its victory.
31 GUSTO 1989
29’6’’ Cavalier class sloop, built in 1981. Competed in the 1989 SHR. Current owner, Phillip Denison.
32 WILD THING 1993
A15.1m fractional sloop, designed by Australian Jim Inglis, modified by Iain Murray. Built in 1991 for Melbourne-based Grant Wharington. Competed in the 993 & ’94 SHR’s With Wharington at the helm she won the 1996 Melbourne to Osaka Double handed Race. Purchased by Geoff Lavis in 1999, a little known fact is that Wild Thing is a timber boat
33 SYONARA 1995
A 40ft Swanson – designed and built by Ron Swanson 1965.In 70’s and 80’s, mainly used for single handed racing and coastal cruising. Current owner, Greg Maughan, sailed her in the 1994 SHR.
34 KRAKATOA 2001
A Young 30 built in 2000. Has competed in 2 SHR’s, 2002/03, winning trophy for fastest small boat 2002. In 2003 sailed in the Transpac race – Los Angeles to Honolulu. Current owner Don Young purchased her in 2005 and has campaigns her regularly in events on Sydney Harbour.
35 FASTER FORWARD 2003
A Sydney 38, launched in 2001 as Yandoo Originally sailed as Yandooand later as Getaway Sailing. Competed in SHR in 2002 and 2004 under charter to British sailor, Jakki Moore. Current owner, Peter Taylor will be competing in the coming Sydney Yachts National Championship.
36 MALUKA 2006
Wooden 9m Gaff Cutter built in 1933 – by far the oldest boat in the fleet. Current owner/skipper Sean Langman has taken her to Hobart four times – 2006, ‘08, ‘10 and ‘11 – each time winning the Plum Crazy Trophy – awarded to the 1sst yacht under 9.5m LOA to finish. A startling point of interest is that Maluka sailed from Sydney to Hobart in 1934 – 10 years before the first SHR! The only boat in the parade that is sailing in this year’s Rolex 70th Sydney Hobart.