Reigning Blue Water Pointscore champion, Darryl Hodgkinson and his Beneteau 45, Victoire, have taken out the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s Lion Island Race, the first race of the Club’s annual Ocean Pointscore Series (OPS).
It was Beneteau mania, as four finished in the top five, with
Paul Clitheroe's Beneteau 45, Balance, five minutes behind
Victoire on corrected time to take second place. Third
overall was 2010/2011 and 2011/2012 OPS winner, Julian
Farren-Price's About Time. The Cookson 12 was just 26
seconds behind Balance on corrected time.
Fourth and fifth overall went to Chris Bran's Beneteau F40,
Brannew and Imagination, Robin Hawthorne's
Beneteau 47.7, in what turned out to be a close race at the top of
Darryl Hodgkinson described the start as: "A horror show - and
then we were on the wrong side of the Harbour (west) when the
breeze did come in, so we just said 'oh, well, let's just point the
bow in the right direction and get on with it,' so that's what we
"We set a chute and were looking in good shape when we reached
the Island, but we weren't sure how we were doing against About
Time, because we haven't raced it before. Poor Julian's
probably wondering what to do about all these Beneteaus!"
Paul Clitheroe gave a picture of how events unfolded: "It was
odd. At the start it was headsail up, down, code zero up, some
tried spinnakers and finally the breeze became more than a whisper
and we Code Zeroed to North Head in good shape and set a headsail
to go around."
'The Money Man' said the breeze was at south-east, "and we ran
to the Island in a fairly
consistent 16 knots. The breeze did us a favour as we turned
around the Island; it went more to the east-south-east and reached
around 17 knots," he said.
"Three tacks later, we were in the Harbour and then the wind did
the right thing again;
we got a little easterly and popped a kite to the finish. It was a
beautiful race and it will be a perfect day if Souths win tonight,"
said Clitheroe, who had warned the crew that they would be pulling
out of the race if they weren't finished by 4.30pm in time to get
to the match.
"It's funny, because half of Darryl's (Hodgkinson's) crew are
going to the South's footy game tonight too, so we'll see them
again. It was a great race between us and I'm happy to finish
second," he added.
After her slow start, Jim Cooney's Jutson 80,
Brindabella, found more pace going down the Harbour and
kept up the momentum to make it home to the Rushcutters Bay finish
line at 15.34.45, followed at 15.59.46 by Leslie Green's Swan 45
Ginger, and David Forbes' Kaiko 52, Merlin at
Principal Race Officer, Robyn Morton, described the morning'
start as: "Terrible. It took
the fleet around an hour to get out of the Harbour. The yachts at
least found some decent breeze as they headed north
The fleet was seen drifting near Shark Island at 11.00am,
headsails flapping listlessly
as crews tried to get every ounce of movement out of their yachts.
A couple tried to set kites, and while they puffed up momentarily,
they were soon useless as the extra-light breeze wafted between
south-east and east-south-east, and no sign of the predicted
At around 11.15am, the breeze slowly filled in towards the
middle of the Harbour and those in the right place at the right
Despite getting off to a slow start, all 21 starters had
finished well before the 10.00pm cut-off time. Last home was Bryan
Moore's Northshore 369, Shibumi, which finished at
17.32.59, in company with four others, who finished within minutes
of each other.
The next race in the nine-race OPS is the Botany Bay Race
starting at 10.00am on
Saturday October 6.
For full results, log onto
By Di Pearson, CYCA Event Media
Image: Andrea Francolini
Paul Clitheroe was happy to finish second - and in time for the footy
Image: Andrea Francolini
Brindabella took line honours in the first race of the Ocean Pointscore Series