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Line Honours struggle....Brisbane Gladstone race

by Ian Grant on 21 Apr 2000
The Carlton Brisbane-Gladstone race line honours battle turned into a nip-n-tuck struggle off the Sunshine Coast shortly after dusk tonight when the light winds dramatically changed from a spinnaker sailing South East breeze to a light variable North East head wind.

As expected the completely contrasting weather system to the one issued for the race has totally tested the persistence and determination of the crews to gain some respectable distance on the rhumbline to Gladstone.

They spent most of the day studying the southern horizon for any true signs of breeze but it never filled into the expected 12-15 knot velocity leaving the fleet with little chance of setting a respectable course time.

Race line honours favourite and the defending 1999 trophy winner Nortruss G-Wizz had surrendered her earlier lead to the smaller Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club sloop Leroy Brown when the slowly tacked past Coolum.

At 9-30 tonight Adrian Finglas reporting from Nortruss G Wizz said “ We are presently doing 5.2knots in a 4 knot North West land breeze and Leroy Brown is ahead off our starboard bow”.

Both yachts were off Noosa having covered 68 of the 308 nautical mile course in a slow 10.5 hours and were half a mile ahead the Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron sloop Cruz Control skippered by Gold Coast husband and wife Maynard and Vicki Smith.

Naturally all on watch crews who were faced with a slow sail are hopeful of logging faster speed after dawn tomorrow.

Meanwhile the Multihull race leader Raw Nerve had also sailed into a ‘parking lot’ to surrender her lead to the smaller trimaran Hogsbreath Trilogy as the tracked an inshore course past Noosa Heads.

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