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Ausmaid Line Honours favourite for Port Lincoln Race

by Peter Campbell on 1 Mar 2001

Ausmaid, the IMS Overall winner of the 2000 Telstra Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race and arguably the best IMS grand prix racing yacht in Australia, will attempt to achieve a rare ocean racing double when she sails in the 51st Adelaide to Port Lincoln Race, starting off Port Adelaide tomorrow.

In winning the 2000 Sydney to Hobart, the Farr 47 became only the third South Australian-owned yacht to win a Hobart Race. ,

If she can win the Quin's Blue Water Classic race to Port Lincoln, Ausmaid will join the other two yachts, Nerida and Ingrid, also as a winner of South Australia's major long ocean race.

Nerida, then owned by Colin Haselgrove, won the inaugural Adelaide to Port Lincoln Race on corrected time in 1950 and went on to win the Sydney to Hobart the same year.

Ingrid, owned by J.S.Taylor, won three races to Port Lincoln (1951, 1952 and 1954) and in 1952 also won the Sydney to Hobart.

Although owned by Adelaide yachtsman Kevan Pearce, Ausmaid is normally based at the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia and, apart from winning the 2000 Telstra Sydney to Hobart, currently leads the CYCA's prestigious Bluewater Championship.

She will return to Sydney immediately after the race to Port Lincoln to contest the final race for the Bluewater Championship, the Forrester Properties Sydney-Mooloolaba Race starting on April 7.

Ausmaid heads a fleet of 92 yachts from South Australia, Victoria and New South Wales contesting the 152 nautical mile overnight dash from Adelaide across St Vincent's Gulf and Spencer Gulf to the wellknown fishing port of Port Lincoln.

The Cruising Division sets sail from Port Adelaide at 10am tomorrow, the Racing Division at 3pm, with the fleet sailing along the Adelaide beaches to a mark off Henley Pier before heading seaward in a forecast 15 to 20 knot sou'easter.

Ausmaid will start favourite for IMS honours, but also for line honours as the late withdrawal of Wild Thing and the dismasting of Doctel Rager has left the fleet without any maxis or pocket maxis.

However, there will be plenty of competition for handicap honours with a Sydney 38 One Design and a new Jeanneau 40 from Melbourne in the fleet, not to mention the top local boats, Geoff Boettcher's MBD-43, Secret Mens Business, and David Urry's Farr 40 One Design, War Games.

A group of Port Lincoln Yacht Club members has chartered the Sydney 38, 38 Degrees South, from Melbourne yachtsman John Savage while prominent Port Lincoln yachtsman Steve Kemp will be navigating the Melbourne 40-footer Team Jeanneau with international yachtsman Ross Lloyd as principal helmsman.

Further information: Peter Campbell - 0419 385 028

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