Airlie Beach and Hamilton Island Race Weeks 2019
The whistle blows, the flags crossed, the curtains drawn and the final marker post has been crossed. Another year, another successful year of Airlie Beach and Hamilton Island Race Weeks complete.
Airlie Beach Race Week, now in its 31st year, and Hamilton Island Race Week now in its 36th year. An exciting two weeks to be in the area and this year was no different. Both have been generating tourism in the area since their creations. Hamilton Island Race Week even celebrating the title of Australia’s largest offshore yachting regatta. There’s plenty of activities for everyone to get involved with during the two weeks. Especially – the main one is to find yourself a perch to watch the racing. The events draw people from all walks of life – tourists, families, locals and sailors. For 2019; a mixture of wind strengths over the two weeks and a good combination of courses made for some great racing and a close competition. Our congratulations to everyone who took part, and thanks to the volunteers who made it possible! We suggest researching now for Airlie Beach and Hamilton Island Race Weeks 2020!
Vessel Focus: Eureka II
An Ian Murray designed Sydney 60, Eureka II was originally built for the Sydney to Hobart Race, and as such, comes with many mod-cons. Eureka has given up full time racing in place of providing fantastic cruises of the Whitsundays. Though, she still makes a comeback every year for the annual Airlie Beach Race Week. This year Eureka competed with a crew heralding from Perth, kept closely in line by Mal Robertson, the owner.
There were a few incidents this year, such as sustaining damage to a spinnaker and popping a halyard. The spinnaker was fixed over night, returning back to normal the next day. The halyard, however, was rectified whilst racing! A quick sail change and a new halyard attached, and very promptly, the team was able to get back up to speed.
Mal spoke of the team’s clean and efficient racing style which brought them many successes over the week, and meant they claimed second place overall. Further to that – the team can be proud of themselves for crossing the line first in four out of six races over the course of the week. As Eureka is severely handicapped, it meant Vanilla II who is less handicapped managed to secure a few more points and take first place. We’d like to pass on a big congratulations to Mal and the team on their fantastic efforts!