Two boats retire from Tranz Tasman

Early casualties from the Sydney to Auckland double-hander

Sunday April 28th 2002, Author: James Boyd, Location: Australasia
Yesterday saw the departure from Sydney Harbour of the two handed Tranz Tasman Yacht Race to Auckland. In reasonably brisk conditions, eight boats varying from two 21ft Minis to John Biddlecombe's Open 60 Libertyset off from the start line in Watson's Bay.

The first casualty was Biddlecombe's Liberty. As she was passing Sydney Heads she was struck by a gust causing her to round up into a large channel marker buoy. Initially it appeared that the blow to her port quarter had just scraped the topsides, but upon closer inspection the wrought iron buoy had in fact caused her outer skin to delaminate over a one square metre area. She returned to port.

Early this morning Phil Bowers on the Mini Wild Things reported into race HQ that he was experiencing problems with his rudders and was also returning to Sydney Harbour.

Of the six boats remaining in the 1,160 mile long Tranz Tasman double hander, Anthony Day's Sayernara is currently leading from her 1999 Melbourne-Osaka rival Vince Lamond's Spirit of Downunder.

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