Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race 1990
From the 1999 Official Hobart Program
1990 Race and Weather
High winds, fast reachers, exhausting windward work, controversy on the doc and a brilliant win by Sagacious V - the 46th Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race had everything but a new record.
In the midst of the deepening recession a respectable fleet of 106 yachts set sail in a good south easterly race that made a fast start down the Harbour under spinnakers. The first casualties came within hours of the start, when two new half-tonners were dismasted and the drop-out continued the next day as the fleet powered downwind under spinnakers, as the wind swung to the nor'east, freshening to more than 30 knots, with some of the yachts reporting gusts of 50 knots.
In Bass Strait, the maxi ran into a vicious low, which had earlier played havoc with the fleet setting sail in the races from Melbourne to Devonport and Hobart, giving them a two sail reach in 35 knot westerlies.
However, in the lee of the Tasmanian east coast the winds eased away and Rothmans' chance of a race record disappeared. She finally crossed the line with an elapsed time of 2 days, 19 hours, 7 minutes and 2 seconds, the third fastest time in 46 years. However, Rothmans' line honours position, nor her provisional overall second place on corrected time, was not to stand. The Race Committee penalised the British yacht 10% of placings on corrected time and stripped her of the line honours award for breaking Rule 26 (advertising) by flying a spinnaker with an illegal logo on it.
As a result Ragamuffin was awarded line honours, and first place overall on IOR corrected times went to Sagacious V.