Sailors invited to celebrate 75th Brisbane to Gladstone Race

The Notice of Race is out and sailors now have the opportunity to be a part of Australian sailing history by entering the Gladstone Ports Corporation’s Brisbane to Gladstone Yacht Race, which celebrates 75 years when it sets sail on Good Friday, 7 April 2023 from Moreton Bay to Gladstone over 308 nautical miles.

Considered an Australian icon by many discerning sailors, the Brisbane to Gladstone Yacht Race is one of the oldest and most fiercely fought blue water yacht races on the Australian sailing race calendar.

After a spectacular spinnaker start in south-easterly winds on Moreton Bay, followed by a thrilling race ranging from 10-15 knots to Gladstone, records tumbled in this year’s 74th annual race.

Peter Harburg’s super maxi Black Jack took line honours, eclipsing its previous race record of 16 hours, 53 minutes and 57 seconds, which it had held since 2018. She set a new race record of 16 hours, 13 minutes and 56 seconds.

Three yachts named Black Jack, all owned by Harburg, have eight line honours victories between them. Black Jack 66 (2009 and 2010), Black Jack 77 (2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017) and Black Jack 100 (2018 and 2022).

Celestial, owned by Sam Haynes, set a set a new record for a conventionally ballasted yacht, completing the race in 19 hours 24 minutes and 52 seconds.

Ichi Ban won the race overall in 2022 and took out the coveted ‘The Courier-Mail Cup’, which is believed to be one of the oldest perpetual trophies in Australian history to be competed for on a continual basis since 1949.

Ian Gidlow, Commodore of race organising club, Queensland Cruising Yacht Club (QCYC) says the Brisbane to Gladstone Yacht Race is steeped in tradition and proudly remains one of the true blue water ocean classics in the southern hemisphere.

“The race has all the hallmarks of a great passage race – a demanding exit from the bay under pressure from the tide clock, a fast slide up the coast in the dark, a high pressure run into sub-tropical waters and inevitably an intense and often unpredictable finish,” Gidlow said.

“We are incredibly proud of the stature the race holds with sailors who make this a fixture of their annual race calendar and we look forward to welcoming a large and competitive fleet of offshore racing yachts and sailors from around Australia and overseas,” he said.

The Brisbane to Gladstone Yacht Race start is live streamed and combined with Yacht Tracker is followed by an audience of over 100,000 globally.

In 2023, to commemorate the 75th anniversary, sailors will be vying for the biggest array of trophies and prizes in the history of the race.

Thanks to the official timekeeper, Adina Watches, the skipper and all crew members of the overall IRC winner, will all be presented with a specially designed Brisbane to Gladstone Yacht Race Winners Edition watch, It is the only blue water race in Australia to offer trophy watches for all winning IRC crew members.

The skipper of the line honours winner will also receive one of the exclusive watches.

Believed to be the largest monetary prize in Australian sailing for the Performance Handicap Rating Factor (PHRF) division, the overall PHRF winner will be awarded the Peter Holm Cup along with a $10,000 cash prize.

The Brisbane to Gladstone Yacht Race is steeped in history and was first sailed in Easter 1949. Seven vessels took to the start line, two carrying radios, while Brisbane’s Homing Pigeon Club supplied pigeons for the other competing vessels.

Further information about the Gladstone Ports Corporation’s 75th Brisbane to Gladstone Yacht Race is available by visiting: or by telephoning Queensland Cruising Yacht Club Vice Commodore Harley Cowlishaw on 0437 729 642 or emailing:

Jeanneau JY60
M.O.S.S Australia
Race Yachts
West Systems
M.O.S.S Australia
Race Yachts
West Systems