Audi Hamilton Island Race Week : Black Jack strikes back
Friday, 24 August 2012
Australia’s fastest pocket-maxi Black Jack mastered light winds to snatch an important lead in the Audi Hamilton Island Race Week in the warm Whitsunday Islands today.
The sleek American designed ocean racing sloop imported into Australia 5 years ago to make a major assault on winning the prestigious trophy is just one race away from achieving the feat for her modest owner Brisbane businessman Peter Harburg.
Black Jack named in honour of Peter Harburg’s long time friend World champion motor sport driver Sir Jack Brabham blitzed the high standard fleet with her unmatched boat speed.
Skipper Mark Bradford steered for speed in the soft winds while his tactician London Olympic Games Gold Medallist Tom Slingsby laid down a faultless race strategy.
However while both clever sailors played their role in the important race win over the tactically demanding windward –leeward course the crew of equally talented sailors added to Black Jack producing unmatched boat speed.
Their spinnaker sets were all class while their tacks were also fast and smooth which contributed to Black Jack holding a strong grip on the fastest corrected time when the sails were tensioned for the second windward beat.
After they finished their attention was focused on the fishing times of their championship rivals the Sydney sloop Yendys (Geoffrey Ross) and the equally impressive TP52 Shogun V racing under owner Robert Hanna from Victoria’s Royal Geelong Yacht Club.
When asked about how they went – It will be close but we are confident, was the reply from proud owner Peter Harburg.
Black Jack officially claimed an important 13 second win over the Michael Hiatt’s Victorian yacht Living Doll while Stephen Ainsworth’s Loki filled third place.
After eight races Black Jack remains poised to become the first Queensland yacht to win in the 29 year history of Race Week.
Her crew hold a three point lead and are only required to make sure they finish ahead of Yendys and Shogun V into tomorrow’s Molle Island Race to win both the Australian championship and the Audi Hamilton Island Race Week titles.
By Ian Grant.
See Hamilton Island Race Week images
Last Updated ( Friday, 24 August 2012 )