Wild Oats XI retires from Sydney Hobart Race
Published on December 26th, 2016
(December 27, 2016; 12:00 AEDT) – Wild Oats XI, the supermaxi that has dominated the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race for the last 11 years, is out of this year’s race after succumbing to the record pace she was setting at the head of the fleet.
This morning (Dec. 27), approaching the north-east coast of Flinders Island in eastern Bass Strait, the 8-time line honor winner suffered damage to the hydraulic ram that adjusts the angle of the canting, or swinging, keel beneath the hull.
The crew was able to manually centre and stabilise the keel, but retired from the race and is heading for Eden.
Wild Oats XI, also a 2-time overall winner, had been chased throughout the night by Anthony Bell’s supermaxi Perpetual LOYAL, which now leads the 72nd Rolex Sydney Hobart, and is also on race record pace. If she maintains this morning’s speed in good easterly winds, she may finish hours inside the record early tomorrow morning in Hobart.
Eighteen nautical miles astern the New Zealand Giacomo is running second but also leading the race on corrected time.
The Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race, organized by the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia with the co-operation of Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania, is the ultimate test for skippers, tacticians and crews. The 2016 race is the 72nd edition of this 628 nautical mile, time-honoured and classic offshore race.
With 88 yachts competing for the Tattersall’s Cup and coveted Rolex timepiece awarded to the overall winner, this year’s contest looks set to uphold the reputation of this renowned event. The race starts at 13:00 AEDT on December 26, 2016.
Source: Bruce Montgomery, RSHYR media