A different sort of press release…
Bob Oatley’s thoughts about going for a fifth consecutive line honours in the Rolex Sydney Hobart race with his supermaxi Wild Oats XI have already been ignited after the yacht sailed back into Sydney Harbour from Hobart early today in a time that was well inside the course record for the race south.
With only its smallest jib and the cruising mainsail set, Wild Oats XI rode a strong south westerly wind away from Hobart on Thursday and arrived back in Sydney Harbour just 1 day 16 hours later. The passage was more than two hours faster than the record time the yacht posted for the 628 nautical mile Hobart race in 2005.
Making the passage even more remarkable was the fact that Wild Oats XI had only two regular crew on board; delivery skipper Troy Tindill, and Josh Whittaker. The 11 others were sailing friends who were there to help get the big boat back home from Hobart.