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article imageWild Oats XI beats own record to finish Yacht Race at Hobart

By Val Williamson     Dec 27, 2012 in Sports
Hobart - Wild Oats XI shaves nearly seventeen minutes off its own 2005 record to take line honours in the Rolex Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race. Now the long wait for a possible repeat of the triple crown.
The six-time winner supermaxi yacht Wild Oats XI took advantage of favourable winds to make rapid progress, forging miles ahead of competitors and crossing the Bass Strait before the forecast weather front swept through the Strait and across Tasmania.
Even so, twitter followers were warning of a drastic drop in speed as the favourite turned towards harbour, leading to an exciting clock-watching end to ensure line honours - i.e. first past the post honours - for the record-breaking yacht. In the event, standings show, they crossed the line in one day, eighteen hours and twenty three minutes, sixteen minutes fifty eight seconds faster than their previous race record in 2005.
Line honours presentation to skipper and owner of Wild Oats XI
Line honours presentation to skipper and owner of Wild Oats XI
Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race ©Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi
At an early morning ceremony at Constitution Dock, Hobart, Bob Oatley and skipper Mark Richards were presented with a Rolex Chronometer and the Illingworth Trophy for being the first 2012 yacht across the finish line. They must now face a long wait to see if they can win the triple again by claiming handicap honours as well.
Black Jack has been among the leading five yachts in the 2012 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race.
Black Jack has been among the leading five yachts in the 2012 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race.
Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race / Carlo Borlenghi
Among the hot rivals for this are Black Jack and long time rival Ragamuffin- Loyal which have remained among the leading five yachts throughout the 2012 race so far, along with the smaller craft, Loki. Loki came fourth last year, but took handicap honours and the Tattersall's Cup.
Risk taking aboard Ragamuffin-Loyal - a standard part of the process of the 628 nautical mile Rolex ...
Risk taking aboard Ragamuffin-Loyal - a standard part of the process of the 628 nautical mile Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race
Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race / Carlo Borlenghi
The race has claimed two victims so far this year, with Living Doll and Primitive Cool limping to Eden for repairs. Living Doll broke her rudder and Primitive Cool has a damaged mainsail. With more than seventy yachts still at sea, the excitement and the danger of the 2012 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race are by no means over yet.
More about supermaxi yacht, yacht race, Rolex Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race, sailing yacht, sailing yacht Loki
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