Aussie female skipper wins Clipper division of Rolex Sydney Hobart

Wendy ‘Wendo’ Tuck, the first female Australian skipper in the history of the Clipper Race, has clinched first place in the Clipper 70 class of the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race.

Wendy, the Sydney skipper of Da Nang – Viet Nam, managed to hold off GREAT Britain and LMAX Exchange in a tight, tactical battle up the Derwent River. The team crossed the line at 1601 Local Time (0501 UTC) 30 December.

At one point over the last 24 hours, the gap had narrowed to less than 3 nautical miles before Wendo opened up her lead to 10 nautical miles in the final few hours. Da Nang – Viet Nam managed to keep up good speed over the last 30 miles after the threat of lightening winds didn’t materialise.

It is the first podium for Wendo and team in the Clipper 2015-16 Race global series. This is Race 5 of 14. 

“This is my favourite Sydney Hobart ever,” said Wendy who has now finished her ninth Sydney Hobart. “It was so intense, it was horrible over the last few hours but we managed to avoid the wind holes and keep up good speed with the rest of the Clipper 70 fleet bearing down on us. We only lost speed momentarily. I was trying not to get excited, but the crew were so excited as we approached the finish.
 “The crew have really performed and I am so impressed. In this race, I realised I can push them harder, and that is going to be key going forward from here. We know we can get the results,” Wendy added.

Wendy also takes the Jane Tate Memorial Trophy for being the first female Skipper across the finish Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race finish line.

Also aboard celebrating the win is local Hobart resident David Graney, a round the world crew member.

Behind Wendy, GREAT Britain finished in second place in the Clipper 70 class at 1722 local time/0622 UTC, and LMAX Exchange in third place at 1739 AEDT/0639 UTC.

There won’t be much time to celebrate or rest in Hobart for the Clipper Race fleet as the next test, the Henri Lloyd Hobart to Whitsundays Race starts on 2 January.

Teams will encounter the Bass Strait for the third time in this race to Abell Point Marina, Airlie Beach where they are expected to arrive between 13 to 14 January and stay until 18 January to finish up the last stop of the All-Australian leg.

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