The Cruising Yacht Club of Australia has received the first international Application to Enter this year's 60th Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - from a German yachtsman who is building a new Reichel/Pugh designed Marten 49 to be named Vineta.
This brings to 14 the number of boats already nominated for the 628 nautical mile ocean classic which starts on 26 December 2004.
The Marten 49, described as a sports cruising yacht, is being built in Auckland by the internationally renowned Marten Yachts, and is due for launching in November for the German owner/skipper Felix SCHEDER-BIESCHIN.
Scheder-Bieschin is an experienced ocean racing yachtsman who has competed in three Fastnet Races, three Transatlantics and a Buenos Aires to Rio Race.
The high-tech boat will be the second to be launched Marten 49, built in carbon fibre with foam cores. It will be rigged with a Marten Spars carbon double sweptback spreader, tapered mast. The boat has a LOA of 15m, a beam of 4.17m, a draft of 3.7m, an IRC displacement of 11,230kg and 3,413kg in ballast.
Vineta is expected to be a strong contender for the Tattersall's Cup, the historic perpetual trophy for Overall Winner under IRC handicaps, the trophy won by another German yacht, Raptor, in the 50th Sydney Hobart Race in 1994 when the winner was decided under the IMS handicap system.
Meanwhile, veteran Melbourne yachtsman Lou ABRAHAMS has nominated a new, as yet un-named Sydney 38 for the 60th Race, with his previous Sydney 38, Another Challenge, to be skippered by Chris LEWIN with a young crew from Melbourne University. A third Sydney 38 in the early line-up is Bruce TAYLOR'S Chutzpah, also from Melbourne.
Other Applications to Enter the 60th Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race so far received by the CYCA include: By Order of the Secretary, Cavalier 38 (George SHAW, Vic), Courtesan, Farr 11.7 (Philip CHILDS, WA), Grasshopper, Cole 31 (Graham JACKSON, NSW), Ichi Ban, Farr 52 (Matt Allen, NSW), Kaz, Lyons 52 (David PESCUD, NSW), Komatsu A Few Good Men, Mumm 36 (Shane KEARNS, NSW), Pippin, Farr 37 (David TAYLOR, Tas), Polaris of Belmont, Cole 43 (Chris DAWE, NSW), Strewth, MKL 49 (Geoffrey HILL, NSW) and Wild Oats, Farr 43 (Howard PIGGOTT, NSW).
60th Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race
Course: From Sydney Harbour New South Wales, 628 nautical miles south in the Tasman Sea, down the South-East Coast of Australia, across Eastern Bass Strait and down the East Coast of the island State of Tasmania to Hobart on the Derwent River.
Start: 1300 hours on Sunday, 26 December 2004.
Race record: 1 day 19 hours 48 minutes 2 seconds set by Nokia (Den/Aus) in 1999.
Handicap systems: IRC and PHS. Notice of Race and other information available on official web site - www.rolexsydneyhobart.com/default.asp