Gosford to Lord Howe Island Race - Hobart winner takes on 40th edition

Victoire turning south at the Heads during the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race
The 40th Mount Gay Gosford to Lord Howe Island Yacht Race is coming up. The Notice of Race and entry form for the event has been posted on the GSC website and first entries have been received by the club.

Late yesterday the Gosford Club received an entry for Ker 40 Midnight Rambler, followed by several others this morning. Midnight Rambler Co-owners Ed Psaltis, Michael Bencsik and Bob Thomas have mapped out a program that also includes this year’s Auckland to Fiji Race and after negotiations with G2LHI Race Committee will be accepted immediately to assist with their logistical planning.

Exciting news for the Gosford Club was the early entry from the Hobart Winner Victoire and this has sent historians back to the record books to determine the last time the reigning Hobart winner started in the Gosford classic. Dr. Darryl Hodgkinson and Victoire will be out to emulate the ‘98/’99 successes of the Hick 35 AFR Midnight Rambler which scored a tough win in the tragic 1998 Sydney to Hobart Race and then proved that was no fluke by taking out a testing G2LHI Race the following October.

To add strength to its form, Victoire was also runner up in CYCA’s Blue Water Point Score for 2013-14 but will not run into their nemesis going to the Island in April. The BWPS winner and former Lord Howe winner Wild Rose will be focusing on the IRC Nationals to be held later in April and has advised the G2LHI Committee that they won’t be a starter for the Blue water Classic this year.

Dr. Hodgkinson also complimented the Gosford Club for the date change made last year. He suggested that the race had been in no man’s land for some years but now the Lord Howe Race is now well placed on the calendar, which is the reason for the increased popularity.

Victoire is one the best credentialed IRC ocean racers in Australia and has previously raced as Jazz and Quantum Racing. The canting keel Cookson 50 has gone very close to winning the Hobart on several occasions under the former ownership prior to the recent success for Hodgkinson as Victoire.

Others to get their entries early include the reigning Line Honours champion VO70 Southern Excellence II, the Marten 49 Ocean Affinity and recent Pittwater to Coffs Harbour runner-up and Coffs regatta winner Exile.

Organisers expect unprecedented interest for the 40th Lord Howe so urge those interested in competing this year to get their entry in immediately.

Mooring restrictions will again limit the size of the race fleet to a maximum of 16 entrants in 2014, but the quality looks like challenging for the best ever G2LHI Race fleet.

Due to accommodation, gear logistics and flight difficulties, the Gosford Club is likely to make some early selection decisions to assist competitors in putting their campaigns together.

Event website