Testing rather than torrid race expected

ADRIAN WARREN
Last updated 15:05 24/12/2012
Investec Loyal sails past Tasmania's iconic Organ Pipes on the way to winning the 2011 Sydney to Hobart yacht race.
Reuters
A WINNER: Investec Loyal sails past Tasmania's iconic Organ Pipes on the way to winning the 2011 Sydney to Hobart yacht race.

Relevant offers

Other Sports

Kiwi rowers and sailors determined Rio water issues won't diminish Olympic hopes Lisa Carrington wins another gold at canoe sprint World Cup in Germany Geko recovery device gives athletes added edge New York Rangers beat Tampa Bay Lightning to tie NHL Eastern Conference finals series Lisa Carrington into kayaking World Cup final in Germany Lisa Carrington claims third World Cup gold as Kiwi pair win bronze Lakers star Kobe Bryant expected to step away after next season Peloton finishes for Aaron Gate and Alex Frame at Tour of Ireland Kayaker Andrew Roy wins appeal against his non-selection at Sports Tribunal Jimmy Spithill to Dean Barker: Let's get Grant Dalton

This year's Sydney to Hobart fleet can expect a testing rather than torrid journey south.

The Christmas Eve weather briefing for the fleet of 77, confirmed the race was likely to start under south easterly breezes of around 15 knots, with the force increasing to around 20 knots outside Sydney Harbour.

The winds will lighten off a few hours into the race, but north easterlies forecast for early on Thursday will give the fleet a good downwind push.

A westerly change will reach Bass Strait late on Thursday, with a series of westerly changes forecast for Friday and Saturday.

"It looks as though it's going to be a fairly easy race, I don't think we're going to get knocked around too much," said Syd Fischer, skipper of defending line honours champion Ragamuffin Loyal.

Wild Oats XI skipper Mark Richards said beating his boat's 2005 race record remained a possibility under the latest forecast, but would be a bonus.

"For all of us it's just going to be pedal to the metal," Richards said.

"Don't back off, push off as fast as you can and hopefully sail the shortest course possible and the rest is in the hands of the gods."

Matt Allen, skipper of the fancied 70-foot handicap cap contender Ichi Ban, tipped the overall winner to be a boat of at least 60 foot.

Ad Feedback

- AAP

Special offers
Opinion poll

Will Shane Cameron beat Kali Meehan on Saturday?

For sure. Cameron will knock him out.

It will be close but I think Cameron on points.

Meehan will knock him out. This is his last fight.

I'm tipping Meehan to win on points.

Vote Result

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content