Please select your home edition
Edition
Pro-Set 728x90

Hamilton Island Race Week: "My favourite sailing event in the world" says yachting great

by Rob Mundle 13 Jul 2018 00:54 BST 18-25 August 2018
Karl Kwok's Beau Geste at Hamilton Island Race Week © Andrea Francolini

As the fleet for Hamilton Island Race Week 2018 climbs towards 200 and beyond, one of the world's most prominent Olympic, America's Cup and offshore sailors, Gavin Brady, has delivered a resounding endorsement for the tropical series.

"Hamilton Island Race Week is my favourite sailing event in the world," he said.

The full-time professional yachtsman, who also has four victories in the prestigious Congressional Cup match-racing series in America to his credit, made the declaration when explaining why he and popular Hong Kong yachtsman Karl Kwok would unfortunately not be at Race Week this year.

Brady, a New Zealander, is sailing master aboard Kwok's highly successful IRC racer, Beau Geste, which this month will be competing for the IRC World Ocean Racing Championship crown out of The Hague in Holland, and the dates for that regatta clash with Race Week.

The Kwok and Brady combination won the IRC championship at Hamilton Island Race Week in 2014 and 2015. It is expected they will be back at the renowned Whitsundays regatta with Beau Geste in 2019 for another tilt at the title.

Even with Beau Geste not competing this year, all signs indicate the grand prix IRC division yachts will experience some of the best racing imaginable. Two of the leading contenders in Division 1 are Rolex Sydney Hobart race winner Matt Allen with his Botin 52 designed Ichi Ban and Marcus Blackmore, who will be racing his TP52 Hooligan. Blackmore was the first Race Week competitor to win the championship over three consecutive years.

There will also be an interesting tussle in IRC Division 2 between two of the exciting new Fast 40 class yachts, Daryl Hodgkinson's recently imported Victoire and Ray Roberts' Team Hollywood.

Hodgkinson, who won the 2013 Hobart race with his Cookson 50 of the same name, will be competing at his 10th Hamilton Island Race Week. He said he and his crew are on a steep learning curve with the new yacht, so they are looking forward to the challenge that will come from Team Hollywood.

The Race Week entry list reveals there are now 30 yachts registered across the three IRC divisions; 88 in the new Hamilton Island division for cruiser-racers, and 30 in the multihull divisions. All other divisions are also strong numerically.

The 35th edition of Hamilton Island Race Week will be staged from August 18-25. Entries close August 5 and all information is on the website: www.hamiltonislandraceweek.com.au

Related Articles

Rush of entries for Hamilton Island Race Week 2019
Entries have been open for little more than a month If early indications are anything to go by, Hamilton Island Race Week 2019 could already be on course for a record fleet when it is staged on the beautiful, island-laced tropical waters of the Whitsunday Passage from August 17-24. Posted on 21 Mar
Entries open for Hamilton Island Race Week 2019
36th edition of Australia's largest regatta The Notice of Race has been posted and entries are open for the 36th edition of Australia's largest and most spectacular offshore regatta, Hamilton Island Race Week. Posted on 27 Feb
Hamilton Island RW: Many reasons to be cheerful
Five Hamilton Island divisions, all enjoyed some close and spectacular island racing for six days How can you fairly handicap a huge and diverse fleet of cruiser racers at Hamilton Island Race Week each year? The very positive response to the latest handicapping initiative say all enjoyed some close and spectacular island racing this year. Posted on 26 Aug 2018
Freshwater finish to saltwater series at HIRW
Freshwater finish to saltwater series Fifteen divisions, 233 boats and close to 2,000 sailors from Australia, New Zealand and around the world spent Hamilton Island Race Week in the Whitsundays dashing around tropical islands with only saltwater hitting the decks Posted on 25 Aug 2018
Hamilton Island Race Week: Meet the Internationals
With several top international sailors competing a media session was staged on Friday With a number of renowned international sailors competing at Hamilton Island Race Week, the organisers provided an opportunity for the media to ask questions of the panel. Posted on 25 Aug 2018
Hamilton Island Race Week business end
Multiple divisions go into final race needing those last points to cement victory Ray 'Hollywood' Roberts' Fast 40 Team Hollywood wrapped up IRC division two with a race to spare in the 35th edition of the annual six-day series. It's Roberts' third divisional win on the trot Posted on 24 Aug 2018
Five days & counting at Hamilton Island Race Week
We are getting to the business end of operations! I was live for the first few starts in Dent Passage with the Hamilton Island (or cruising) Divisions, before ripping over to catch the IRC Passage Divisions. Posted on 24 Aug 2018
Hamilton Island Race Week 2018 day 5
Layday marks a half-time change in the wind direction For day five of Race Week the weather gods decided that the break for the layday should mark a half-time change, with the wind spinning 180 degrees from the southeast to the northwest and the offering of a gentle breeze to soothe the brows. Posted on 24 Aug 2018
An elegant day four at Hamilton Island Race Week
Day four kicked off with the inaugural "Prix de Elegance" Some key moments were "Pop Eye", "Jurassic Minx" and the Romanza team's uniform including synchronised 'lounging' on the massive trimaran. Posted on 23 Aug 2018
Hamilton Island Race Week 2018 day 4
Points tighten as winds return to light northerlies Winds returned to light northerlies at Hamilton Island Race Week on day four of the six-day on-water program in the Whitsunday islands of North Queensland. Posted on 23 Aug 2018