Sydney Hobart

Late on the night of the 27th it looked like the Sydney Hobart race leader, Wild Oats, was going to finish at 2am and smash the existing race record so it looked like here was no chance we were going to be at the finish line. But then the wind changed and fell right away. When I woke up just before 6am I checked the race website and Wild Oats was still an hour or so from the finish line (these things are hard to judge exactly). We didn't want to be late (we missed the finish by less than a minute last year) so Sofia and I rushed to get ready and head down to the finish line.

Wild Oats crosses the finish line
We got to the finish line at about 6.50am and the boat was in view but still a fair way away. There were a few people there but it was nothing like last year when the race finished at 7pm with two boats within three minutes of each other. This year we had no problems getting a parking spot right near the finish line and the CSIRO car park was empty so we could have even parked there.

These boats are really impressively big

Wild Oats did end up setting the race record by about 16 minutes and finished in 1 day, 18 hours, 23 minutes.

Despite the early arrival there were still lots of boats on the water to welcome the winner. This photo doesn't really capture just how many boats there were. The wave they created soaked everyone that was standing too close to the shore.

In front of the judges box were some men all kitted up with ye olde cannon to be fired at the end of the race. It was pretty loud as we were only about ten metres from it.

Cougar II near the finish line
And here is a photo of Cougar II which finished in 16th place with a time of 3 days, 7 hours, 9 minutes. The photo is taken from our verandah and the finish line is just out of view at the left of the picture. There are another 55 boats still racing (five have withdrawn). The last placed yacht is still in Bass Strait and isn't expected to finish for another day and a half yet.

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