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1 April 2004, 09:49 am
Light Breezes Leave FKP Race Fleet Pondering
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Quest © CYCA

FKP Sydney Mooloolaba Race

FKP Sydney Mooloolaba Race crews are this afternoon contemplating a number of questions at they head into their second night at sea.
For the crew aboard the line honours leader Skandia, the big question is whether to stay close to the beach or go offshore while on the second placed boat AAPT, skipper Sean LANGMAN is pondering who will sail into a windless hole next?

"It is going to be a good boat race for second," said Langman this afternoon. He also admitted that he used to think it was "boring out the front but now he realizes he'd rather be bored than in second place."

As well as light breezes, the lead boats have had to contend with an adverse southerly running current pushing against them for the last four hours.

Grant WHARINGTON's Skandia is currently 11 miles ahead of AAPT and sailing north of Smokey Cape in a 10-knot easterly breeze with 285 nautical miles to go to the finish off Alexandra Headland on the Queensland Sunshine Coast.

If all goes well for the 98-footer, she is likely to cross the finish line on Friday night and in the process will add another line honours win to her record 21 consecutive wins since she was launched last year in Victoria.

George SNOW's Brindabella is in sight of AAPT in third place and Seriously TEN, which has sailed a remarkably good race so far is in fourth while the back markers have passed Port Stephens on the NSW mid coast.

In the race for handicap honours, Bob STEEL's 2002 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race Overall winner Nelson Marek 46 Quest is leading both IMS and IRC divisions.

In second and third places on IRC is Graham GIBSON's Hidden Agenda and Skandia second while on IMS, Geoff ROSS' Yendys and Gunner SCHMIDT-LINDNER's Austmark are placed behind Quest.

For final divisional places, the smaller boats have questions of their own.

Namely when will the southerly that was forecast blow up the coast to give them the advantage in this difficult race?

Meanwhile further back in the fleet, Howard de TORRES' Nips n Tux has had a pasting in today's light conditions and has "being going in circles for most of today". A poor result in this race will deprive Howard of his first Bluewater Champion title

Lisa Ratcliff (As Amended by ISAF)
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