Line honours pending for Maritimo in Melbourne to Hobart Race

Maritimo, the 54-foot Schumacher skippered by veteran sailor Michael Spies, looks set to take line honours in the 50th anniversary Melbourne to Hobart Yacht Race.

On current estimates, Maritimo is expected to cross the finish line around 10am on Thursday 29th of December, but with the breeze predicted to drop to five knots this morning, navigating the River Derwent might prove to be the biggest challenge for the team.

There has been some shuffling of the deck chairs overnight and some interesting tactical calls from the lead boats determined to give themselves the best chance of a quick run to the finish line.

At 6am this morning, Maritimo was racing at 8.8 knots just off Cape Connella on Bruny Island and had just over 31 nautical miles to sail to the finish line. Maritimo has a lead of about 29 nautical miles from Tasmanian Andrew Jones’s Inglis 47 AdvantEDGE and Damien King’s Frers 61, MRV.

AdvantEDGE is vying for line honours in the 50th Melbourne to Hobart Yacht Race Image Steb Fisher
AdvantEDGE is vying for line honours in the 50th Melbourne to Hobart Yacht Race Image Steb Fisher

Maritimo leads Rob Date’s high-performance boat Carkeek 43, Scarlet Runner and Paul Buchholz’s Cookson 50, Extasea by just under 40 nautical miles.

Scarlett Runner and Extasea have given themselves every chance to claw back time from Maritimo and improve their overall position in the race by sailing further south in a strategy to find the best wind angle and strength for a quick run to the finish line in the 15 to 20 knot breeze across the south coast of Tasmania.

Leading the race overall is the Elan 410 Saltair, skippered by Sarah Allard from the Royal Yacht Club of Victoria while Maritimo is currently leading on ORC and IRC ratings and is in second place on PHS and overall. MRV is in third place overall with Jazz Player, the Bakewell-White Z39, skippered by Tasmania’s Brent McKay, in fourth place.

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The 435 nautical mile Melbourne to Hobart Yacht Race, is organised by the ORCV with the cooperation of the Derwent Sailing Squadron.

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Jane Austin/ORCV media

Jeanneau JY55
M.O.S.S Australia
JPK 11.80 July 2024
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JPK 11.80 July 2024