Entries are continuing to come into the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia for the 2004 Southport to Mackay Blue Water Yacht Race as the closing day draws near.
The CYCA is assisting the host club, the Mackay Yacht Club with the administration of the 530 nm event, which begins from the Southport Seaway on Friday 6 August at 1.00pm.
The latest entry is 'AFR Midnight Rambler', owned by well-known Cruising Yacht Club identity and Mackay resident Bob THOMAS. The sleek Farr 40 OD, formerly 'Valley Tram' from Brisbane, is a far cry from the boats the Bob Thomas usually skippers. As a tug driver out of Mackay he is usually pulling coal ships in and out of the huge Hay Point Coal Loader near Mackay.
A regular participant in ocean races and a previous winner of the Sydney to Hobart, Lord Howe Island and Sydney to Mooloolaba races, Bob is keen to see the Southport to Mackay Yacht Race develop.
"What we are now seeing develop is another race in a fantastic series of coastal races,"
said Bob, who is on the Southport to Mackay race committee. "Starting from Sydney, boats can race or cruise all the way up the east coast of Australia to the Whitsundays, starting with the Sydney Gold coast race, joining the Southport to Mackay run and finishing with regattas at Airlie Beach, Hamilton Island and Hayman Island. I am looking forward to seeing more skippers support this event so we can have a truly great coastal series"
'AFR Midnight Rambler' will be carrying an almost exclusively Mackay-based crew including former Australian 'Moth' Champion Gary SMITH and local sail-maker Bryn WOODING.
So far official entries include the Farr 52 'Ichi Ban', the Sydney 36 'Sea Change', the Melbourne-based Beneteau 47.5 'Elektra' and the Airlie Beach-based Northshore SX38 'Double 0 Seven'.
Entries close on Friday July 23, 2004, with a $100 meal voucher being offered by the Mackay Yacht Club for the first fully-completed entry received. Further details are available from the CYCA website at the address below.