Sailing: annual Fairway buoy ocean race takes different course


Jack Tar lines up for the start.
Jack Tar lines up for the start.

LIGHT winds and the exclusion zone around the oil rig halfway to Rottnest forced a course change for Hillarys Yacht Club’s annual ocean race to the Fairway buoy.

Instead, the shipping channel marker G red A was used and that produced a problem when a fast moving ship entered the channel.

The yachts in the near vicinity responded to the ship’s horn blasts, cleared the area and headed back to Hillarys under spinnakers.

The Hillarys to Fairway race start was delayed due to lack of wind, in a weak westerly and yachts slowly made their way south hoping for an early sea breeze.

Division 2 and 3 yachts jostle for position at the start.

It arrived just before the turning mark and with great relief for crews they set their spinnakers for the long run back to the finish line off Hillarys.

The wily Bill Gilbert on Jack Tar made the most of the conditions that suited his lighter boat to record a first and fastest in division 1 with Perle second and Hard Evidence third.

In division 2, Terry O’Grady’s Quicksilver was first with HYC Training second and Helga third. Covert Operation was fastest on the day.

It was also race three of the Viking Series with Tony Brooke on Tropical Itch first, Helga second and Blue Chip third.

First and fastest in division 3 was Steve O’Keefe’s Comfortably Numb with Pandora second and Sensei third.

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