Written by Colleen Darcey
24 September 2020
The Derwent Sailing Squadron (DSS) are planning to host this year’s Launceston to Hobart Yacht Race on 27 December 2020.
In an added bonus, organsiers have confirmed that TasPorts will be the major sponsor for the race. The support of the TasPorts state-based company will see the fleet continue to enjoy the facilities and services of the scenic Hobart ports area as boats finish the race in Hobart this year.
Starting at Beauty Point, this iconic race has become a staple of the Tasmanian summer sailing calendar, and will be celebrating its 14th birthday in 2020 when the fleet set off the 285-nautical-mile race along the rugged northern and eastern coastline of Tasmania.
“An important aspect of this year’s race will be to ensure the health and safety of our sailors through the preventative measures of the DSS COVID-19 Safety Plan,” read a statement released by the club. “The DSS are committed to keeping sailing safe and therefore, Tasmanian Government advice in the lead up to the race will be a critical aspect of the race management.”
The race is attracting considerable interest from the local Tasmanian boats, including Bryan Walpole’s Invincible and Justin Barr’s Rumbeat that will set up a Farr 1104 design showdown. Previous overall winners Stewart Geeves’ Young 88 Footloose and Paul Einoder’s Beneteau Oceanis 34 Off-Piste may also be contenders for the race.
For aspiring young sailors, the Launceston to Hobart provides an opportunity for offshore sailing development and experience. John Dryden’s, Jazz Player and Kraken 42S, co-owned by Mark Bayles and Andrew Sinclair have been leading the charge in developing younger crews during the recently Combined Clubs Winter Series and the 2020 Ronald Young & Co. Builders Pipe Opener would be a fantastic addition to the fleet.
“The interest for the years Launceston to Hobart Yacht Race will potentially see a strong fleet of Tasmanian boats and depending on boarder restrictions we are already receiving interest from interstate boats” said Nick Connor, Vice Commodore.
Entries are now open for the Launceston to Hobart Yacht Race, and organsiers are expecting strong and competitive racing under the ratings of IRC, AMS and PHS handicap. This year entrants will also be able to enter the highly regarded ORCi rating.