As usual the Sydney Hobart Yacht Race fleet set off from Sydney Harbour at around lunchtime on Boxing Day. The experts predicted a record run down to Hobart but as they say that almost every year I did not put too much faith in that happening. I watched the start of the race on television and the Formula One cars of yachting, the super maxis of course received most of the attention as eight times winner Wild Oats XI battled Perpetual Loyal for bragging rights over who would sail out of Sydney Heads first.
Later that day I was surprised to learn that Wild Oats XI retired from the race while in the lead after an equipment failure. That was the major retirement of the race, when I checked this morning there had only been four or five retirements out of the fleet of eighty-eight although the race is still in progress. I was equally surprised that the experts turned out to be right. It was a record-breaking run with not only first placed Perpetual Loyal but the second and third placed yachts all breaking Wild Oats XI’s 2012 record by more than five hours.
When I visited this morning over half the fleet had arrived. While Perpetual Loyal took line honours, the second placed yacht Giacomo was proclaimed winner on handicap. A couple of years ago this yacht was dismasted on the way to Hobart and I saw her at Constitution Dock looking a sorry sight so I was rather pleased about that.
The wet weather arrived back in Hobart about the same time as the yachts so although it was not raining while I was taking my photographs it was rather grey and I did not take as many photos as usual. I walked around the pontoons to look for my favourite yachts that compete year after year and found two of them, Ichi Ban and Ragamuffin. Here are photos of them and a couple more. I will post the rest on my Flickr page as I usually do. You can find a link in the sidebar of this page.