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article imageLoki wins the Tattersall's Cup after long wait at Hobart

By Val Williamson     Dec 30, 2011 in Sports
Hobart - Loki made it over the line fourth overall behind Investic Loyal, Wild Oats XI and Lahania, but had a prolonged and tense wait to see if rivals in similar IRC handicapped craft would snatch the crown.
This was Stephen Ainsworth’s fourteenth attempt to gain the cup, his fourth in the current incarnation of Loki. The new larger mainsail added for this year, coupled with catching the winds early, got Loki home fast while the main opposition under the handicap rules took longer, then were further delayed by calm when conditions changed near the end of the course.
Leading rival under IRC handicap rules was Wild Rose (originally named Wild Oats) which had to cross the line by 8.30am local time Friday to take the Tattersall's Cup. In the event, Wild Rose arrived at 3.26pm, by which time Ainsworth was celebrating.
Loki in action 2011 Rolex Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race
Loki in action 2011 Rolex Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race
Rolex / Daniel Forster
Jessica Watson made it to the finish line with Ella Baché Another Challenge and her young yet highly trained British and Australian crew, arrived 37th overall in a time of 4 days, 2 hours, 12 minutes and 58 seconds. The boat was categorized as a Sydney 38 for handicap purposes, and came a creditable second in its class.
“The crew were awesome. It was the best sailing we’ve ever seen them do. It’s what we have been training for and they did exactly that. Everyone did an amazing job. All credit to them – I just held on for the ride.” Watson told press in Hobart.
Jessica Watson and the youngest crew to finish the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race
Jessica Watson and the youngest crew to finish the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race
Rolex / Kurt Arrigo
The youngest skipper in the 2011 Rolex Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race, Chris Percy on Alacrity, had to retire on the first day due to hull damage after hitting an underwater obstacle. Loki also reported hitting an underwater obstacle at around the same point, thought to be sunfish, shark or small whale, and lost time while making safety checks, the Herald Sun reported.
Another first time race skipper, Laura Roper, is still in the race and seems set to take the family boat, Tasmanian registered Natelle Two, over the finish line but out of the honours, currently running 73rd out of the 77 remaining contenders. No doubt she will receive the usual ecstatic welcome Hobart reserves for its local young yachtsmen.
With the last few competitors due in port in a few hours, the 2011 Rolex Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race is all but over. No doubt the discussion in Hobart’s bars and restaurants is already turning to plans for next year’s race.
More about sailing yacht Loki, tattersall's cup sailing prize, Rolex Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race
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