The mix of a fast finishing race combined with the revived Yachties Party resulted in a full Yacht Club when the winner of the 69th Brisbane to Gladstone Yacht Race was announced as President of Australian Sailing Matt Allen and his Ichi Ban crew.
Black Jack took second spot just missing out on historic title of being the only yacht to achieve the “trifecta” of winning three years in a row of both Line Honors and Overall. Despite taking the fourth Line Honours title in a row, Peter Harburg has committed to being a new, bigger 100’ Black Jack to next years race as he continues to chase the overall race record set by Skandia fourteen years ago.
The Shorthanded division saw three strong entrants; QCYC’s very own Samurai Jack as well as Apriori and Dream Lover. Trevor Hill and Lucas Burns of Apriori took back to back wins.
Duncan Hine, skipper of Alive, joined the Race from his home base in Tasmania after a successful racing campaign in Asia in 2016 and had a strong showing in all the divisions including a win in the ORCi handicap category. “When the boat is in Australia, we think this is one of the glamour races. This year it was no different, warm, dry and with breeze and if we had champagne we’d have been drinking it too” commented Hine after the presentations “It’s great to have a race that coincides with full moon, making night time sailing easy. We have an enthusiastic team of sailors, which makes sailing FUN.”
Gladstone personality Wistari, sailing in her 49th race, had a dream run to win both of her divisions in IRC and ORCi but missed out on the treble; Flying Colours II trumped the fleet in PHRF.
In the Cruising Division, which continues to grow, Marriah took the spoils with a strong sail. This win helped cement QCYC’s second place in the Federation Cup Teams Trophy beaten only by CYCA thanks to the strong showings of Ichi Ban and Hollywood Boulevard.
The success of bringing the start of the race to the world by live stream seems to be a phenomenon that the fans across the globe are not yet willing to give up watching. With the reach of the live stream continuing to rise, the race’s Facebook site has already hit the 100,000 mark.
From all angles, the race can only be declared a success. Barely twelve hours after the last boat has finished and the meetings for the Silver Jubilee in 2018 have begun.
Thanks goes to all involved with the race, a huge shout out to Cooper McKenzie Marketing and The Streaming Guys for taking the 69th race global and Mayor Matt Burnett for helping us make this happen; a very special mention to the many volunteers who make this race possible, Karen Somerville, John Hoysted, VMR Gladstone, Marine Rescue Brisbane and SES Gladstone; and of course our platinum sponsors QantasLink & Gladstone Regional Council.