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Sydney to Brisbane Yacht Race
1964 Sydney to Brisbane NOR Page 1
1964 Sydney to Brisbane NOR Page 1

StateNSW
CountryAustralia
ClubMiddle Harbour Yacht Club
Year Held From/To1964 -1973

Sydney to Brisbane Yacht Race

From MHYC: The First 60 Years

Article by: Geoff Foster

Published: 1999

In March 1964, the first Sydney to Brisbane race was held, but it was not until 1972 that the fleet reached double figures. Commodore Horrie Godden was the driving force behind the Brisbane race, actively encouraged by Brisbane Lord Mayor Clem Jones and the Queensland Cruising Yacht Club, the race being then regarded primarily as a feeder for the Brisbane to Gladstone Race. All of the first nine races started at the club, Clem Jones coming down from Brisbane to fire the gun on more than one occasion.

The races finished off Sandgate in Moreton Bay, a sail of at least six hours from the Caloundra Fairway buoy, with tidal conditions a major influence.

Competitors were feted after the finish with Lord Mayoral receptions and press and television appearances. Eventually the finishing line was transferred from Sandgate to Mooloolaba where the local yacht club profited from after-finish celebrations and fleet numbers increased dramatically following the change. For some years the title Sydney to Brisbane Race was retained, with QCYC continuing to present trophies.

Many Brisbane competitors went on to compete in the Brisbane to Gladstone race starting on Good Friday.

In 1972 a joint approach was made to Ampol to sponsor a yachting trophy. As a result the Ampol Tasman Sea Trophy came into being, probably the first yachting sponsorship in Australia. The sponsorship was worth $1500 and was for a series of three races:

1. Montague at the October holiday weekend;

2. Solitary after Christmas;

3. Sydney to Brisbane Yacht Race, soon to be re-named the Sydney to Mooloolaba Yacht Race.

1964

Inaugural Sydney to Brisbane Yacht Race run by Middle Harbour Yacht Club

1st Cadence

2nd Carmen

3rd Kaluna

1964 Notice of Race

Program supplied by John Stanley

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1967

ln winning the 1967 Sydney to Brisbane Race. Mister Christian topped off; most successful initial season of racing with the Sydney Ocean Racing Fleet. After his win in the 1966 Brisbane to Gladstone Race, Peter Kurts had brought Mister Christian to Sydney to race in C.Y.C. events with marked success, the highlight being first in Division l of the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race.

This year's 500 mile classic was also a triumph for designer/ builder Ron Swanson. Syonara took line honours while Mister Christian, Carinya and Syonara were placed first, second and third respectively on corrected time.

The race was sailed all the way in a gale force south-easter caused by a cyclone in the north and high seas. Syonara led all the way up the coast, pressed by Mister Christian and in the early Kurura. All crews reported exciting rides with hair-raising experience when the more venturesome attempted to carry spinnakers.

At the Caloundra Fairway buoy, with 42 miles to go, Mister Christian passed Syonara who had edged a little too far to the north in poor visibility. Ln a 35 knot sou-easter these two yachts staged a tacking duel to the East Knoll buoy, and after a neck and neck run to the finish only 54 seconds separated them as Syonara crossed the line at Sandgate in the exceptionally fast time of 3 days 4 1/2 hours.

ln the meantime the remainder of the fleet, with the exception of Kurura, were battling up the North East Channel and across the Bay, led by Frank Likely's ketch Hoi Phoon, who had made remarkable time in the run up the coast.

Hoi Phoon crossed the line third only 4 1/2hours behind the leaders. All yachts finished in a little over 8 hours, a tribute to the skill and seamanship of the crews in such strenuous conditions.

Kurura undoubtedly provided the hard luck story of the race. Off Evans Head she lost the bottom half of her rudder. As both the Evans Head and Ballina bars were closed, Kurura carried on under reduced sail and jury steering to rendezvous at Cape Moreton with the motor cruiser Sea Mist organised by the Q.C.Y.C. and was then towed to Sandgate. Although the Clubs were alerted to the possibility of rescue, Kurura, Middle Harbour Yacht Club, Queensland Cruising Yacht Club and the Department of Shipping and Transport were in constant communication through the O.T.C. Stations and Peter Prentice's yacht Safari. This co-operation prevented a normal exercise of seamanship in an emergency from becoming a dramatic incident in the public eye.

A review of the past four races shows that the average elapsed times were 1964 - 3 1/2 days in light S.E. winds, 1965 - 4 1/2 days in light N.E. and S.E. breezes, 1966 -2 3/4 days in a strong southerly and 1967 - 3 1/2 days in strong S.E. winds. This experience together with reports from yachts on return passages show that modern ocean racers should complete the course in five days or less unless long periods of calm, which are most unlikely, prevail. It has therefore been decided to start the 1968 race on the Friday before Good Friday, some six days later than in the past. This will give seven full days to complete the race and prepare for the Brisbane -- Gladstone Race which starts on Good Friday, or alternatively enable those yachts not competing in the Northern event to race to Brisbane and return with a loss of only one working week. The time required to compete in the two races will be considerably shortened, the problem of crew movements should be eased, and those cruising home from Gladstone will be able to do so in a little more leisurely fashion.

lt is anticipated that the finishing line will be near the mouth of the Brisbane River and berthing facilities and amenities are being provided near the Storey Bridge. These arrangements should make it easier for crews so far as travelling to the city, entertaining visitors and embarking stores is concerned. Also, in view of the record fleet expected, it will ease the pressure on Clem Masters yard. All past competitors have been grateful to Clem Masters for his hospitality and for his efforts in providing, amenities and shipyard facilities. At the same time all agree that while the assistance is given gladly and received gratefully, the time must come when the fleet is too large for Cabbage Tree Creek and must prove an embarrassment to our friends at Deagon and Sandgate.

1967 Results

Placing Yacht Owner T.C.F. Elapsed Time HH MM  SS Corrected Time HH SS MM
1 Mister Christian Peter Kurts 0.7892 76 15 45 60 11 11
2 Carinya V. J. Burnes 0.7422 83 44 41 62 09 19
3 Syonara P. B. Docker 0.8168 76 14 51 62 16 43
4 Hoi Phoon Frank Likely 0.7751 80 44 35 62 35 03
5 Malveena R. C. Masters 0.7542 84 05 38 63 25 25
6 Joy Too J. J. McLaren 0.7575 84 34 47 64 04 09
Line Honours Syonara P. B. Docker
Retired Kurura

W. H. Burke

1972

Sydney to Brisbane Tasman Sea 1973.
Sydney to Brisbane Tasman Sea 1973.

Below is a list of the boats racing in the Sydney to Brisbane Yacht Race 1973

Boat Class Crew Other
Bettina 32ft Sloop Ed Nicholls, Nav. Rib Derrin, Jim Gleesen
Senyah 32ft 10 in. Sloop Geoff Foster, Nav. Frank Likely, H. Tillinghast, A. R. Campbell, C Baines
Barbarian 38ft Sloop Adrian Alle, Nav. Bob jemisen, Max Smith, John Dewd, Roger Quiddington, Paul Bevis
Hamony 32ft Sloop Husband and wife team Peter Hopwood and Carol Hopwood, Charles Herbert, N. Casey, D. Henry
Aeolus 36 ft Sloop Ray Canniffe, Nav, Rod Florence, John Kopelke, Jim, Sue, Tony Goodwin and one other Designed and built by Ray Canniffe
Zilver Meeuw 31ft Sloop Andy Gallagher, Nav. A. Gallager, L. Hunter, I. McCartney, N. Gough and one other
Sarlena 33 ft. Sloop Cliff McGarry, Nav. Self, W. Wall, D. Hocking and two others
Zilvergeest I 30ft Sloop Eric Williams, Nav. A Raine, H. Rose, R. Raine, R. Guy
Pilgrim 38ft 10 in. Sloop Graham Evans, Nav, self, Jim Bourke, A. Carson, I. Hughes, Col Wildman, John Munsen and one other 2nd in World One Ton Cup Series
Saracen II 36 ft 6 in. Sloop John Morris, Nav. David Robinson and others
Bacardi 43 ft 6 in. Sloop Peter and David Hankin, Skipper Peter Hankin Cole 43
Marina 43 ft Yawl Skipper/Nav Bob Quin, D. Tovey, R. Tucker, A Neren, J. Huie, R. Ellis, P. Sebourne and 2 others Bockerman has loaned his boat to crew. Not regulars
Matika 36 ft Sloop Alan Pearson, J. Dustan, C. Graham, G. Wray, R. Weaver and D. McDonald
Veninde II 36 ft Sloop Bob Crosfied, J. Nobbs and 4 others
Makaretu 45 ft. Ketch Norm Gosson, Nav R Bearman and others
Tui Manu 37 ft Yawl Mick York, Nav Self, Tony Pfeiffer, Bev James, Nevel Bowman, Neil Bennets and one other
Boomaroo III 33 ft. 7 in. Sloop Hugh Findlay, Nav Self, I Findla, J. Jackson, R. Jackson, C Colleridge, D. Peebles
Diamond Cutter I 33 ft. Sloop Alan Sweeney, Nav Barry Cliffe, A. White, John Walsh and others
Onya of Gosford 42 ft. Sloop Peter Rysdyk, Nav Self, B. Robinson, A. Brown, Scottie Barrett (from Brisbane for local knowledge), Sl Travillen, P. Samdoma, B. Livesey
Huster 57 ft. 6 in. Sloop John Spencer, Nav B. Climo, R Andriesse, P. Mourant, N. Cooper and one other
Apollo 45 ft. Sloop Jack Rookyn, Nav Stan Darling, T. Sharples, B. Holmes, B. Holmes, D. Tracy, J. McCloud, J. Boulton
Wistari 35 ft. Sloop Noel Patrick, Nav. Self, K. Watson, R. Ogden, R. Patrick, K. Pashley
Tequila 34 ft. Sloop Tom Fermastad (new owner, first race. Previous owners sailing as crew.
Rival 36 ft Sloop Alby Bergin, complete with "white hunter" hat

Pictures

1973

Sydney to Brisbane Tasman Sea 1973.
Sydney to Brisbane Tasman Sea 1973.
Apollo and Bettina (MH58 Eddie Nicols): 1973. Start of the Sydney To Brisbane Race
Apollo and Bettina (MH58 Eddie Nicols): 1973. Start of the Sydney To Brisbane Race

Below is a list of the boats racing in the Sydney to Brisbane Yacht Race 1973

Boat Class Crew Notes
Bettina 32 ft. Sloop Ed. Nicholls, Nav. Ron Derrin, Jim Gleesen  
Senyah 32 ft 10 in. Sloop Geoff Foster, Nav. Frank Likely, H. Tillinghast, A. R.  
Barbarian 38 ft. Sloop Adrian Alle, Nav. Bob Jemisen, Max Smith, John  
Harmony 32 ft. Sloop  Husband and wife team Peter Hopwood and Carol Hopwood and Charlie Herbert, N. Casey, D. Henry  
Aeolus 36 ft. Sloop Ray Canniffe, Nav. Rod Florence, John Kopelke, Designed and built by Ray Canniffe
Zilver Meeuw 31 ft. Sloop Andy Gallagher, Nav. A. Gallagher, L. Hunter, l.  
Sarlena 33ft. Sloop Cliff McGarry, Nav. Self, W. Wall, D. Hocking and  
Zilvergeest I 30 ft. Sloop Eric Williams, Nav. A. Raine, H. Rose, R. Raine,  
Pilgrim 38 ft. 10 in Sloop Grahame Evans Nav.  Self, Jim Bourke, A. Carson, i. Hughes, Col Wildman, John Munston and one other 2nd in World 1 Ton Cup
Saracem II 36 ft. 6 in. Sloop John Morris, Nav. David Robinson and others.  
Bacardi 43 ft. 6 in. Sloop Peter and David Hankin, Skipper Peter Hankin. Cole 43
Marina 43 ft. Yawl Skipper Nav. Bob Quin, D. Tovey, R. Tucker, A. Neren, J. Huie, R. Ellis, P. Sebourne and two others. Backman has loaned boat to crew. Not his regulars
Matika 36 ft. Sloop Alan Pearson, J. Dunstan, C. Graham, G Wray, R. Weaver and D. McDonald  
Veninde II 36 ft. Sloop Bob Crosfield, J. Nobbs and four others.  
Makaretu 45 ft. Ketch Norm Gosson, Nav. R. Bearman and others.  
Tui Manu 37 ft. Yawl  Mick York Nav. Self, Tony Pfeifer, Bev James, Neil Bowman, Neil Bennets and one other.  
Boomaro III 33 ft.7in. Sloop Hugh Findlay, Nav. Self, l. Findlay, J. Jackson, P R. Jackson, C. Colleridge, D. Peebles.  
Diamond Cutter I 33 ft. Sloop  Alan Sweeney, Nav. Barry Cliffe, A. White, John Walsh and others.  
Onya of Gosford 42 ft. Sloop Peter Rysdyk, Nav. Self, B. Robison, A. Brown,  
Hustler 45 ft. Sloop  John Spencer, Nav. B. Climo, R. Andriesse, P.  
Apollo 57 ft.6in.Sloop Jack Rooklyn, Nav. Stan Darling, T. Sharples, B.. Holmes, D. Tracy, J. McCloud, J. Boulton.  
Wistari 35 ft. Sloop Noel Patrick, Nav. Self, K. Watson, R. Ogden,  
Tequila 34 ft. Sloop  Tom Fermostad. New owner, first race. Previous owners sailed as crew.  
Rival 36 ft. Sloop  Alby Bergin. Complete with "white hunter" hat.  

Pictures

Sydney to Brisbane Tasman Sea 1973
Sydney to Brisbane Tasman Sea 1973
Sydney to Brisbane Tasman Sea 1973.
Sydney to Brisbane Tasman Sea 1973.
Sydney to Brisbane Yacht Race
Sydney to Brisbane Yacht Race

1974

Pictures and Articles

Odyssey at Middle Harbour Yacht Club. Start of the Sydney to Brisbane Yacht Race 1974. John Gleeson, Bob Quinn John Duggan
Odyssey at Middle Harbour Yacht Club. Start of the Sydney to Brisbane Yacht Race 1974. John Gleeson, Bob Quinn John Duggan
Odyssey at Middle Harbour Yacht Club. Start of the Sydney to Brisbane Yacht Race 1974. John Gleeson, John Duggan, Charlie Herbert
Odyssey at Middle Harbour Yacht Club. Start of the Sydney to Brisbane Yacht Race 1974. John Gleeson, John Duggan, Charlie Herbert
Odyssey - Start of the Sydney to Brisbane Yacht Race 1974
Odyssey - Start of the Sydney to Brisbane Yacht Race 1974
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