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1 January 2005, 12:16 pm
Jakki MOORES Notches Up An Honour For Women
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Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race
Hobart,Tasmania

Friendships are often made on a boat, but Jakki MOORES and her friends from Britain and The Netherlands have now completed a journey that has brought them closer together than ever before.

Jakki sailed the Sydney 38 Lexar into Hobart late on Friday afternoon as the first woman skipper to cross the line in the 60th anniversary Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race, thereby winning the Jane Tate Memorial Trophy.

But more importantly for Jakki, she got her friends to the end of a rough trip - the first Rolex Sydney Hobart for the majority of the crew.

Jakki has completed the race twice before (2002, 2003) but this was her first as skipper and she says the major difference was the responsibility she felt for her crew, especially during storm conditions.

'They're a bunch of amateurs and I thought 'what have I done to these people, my friends',' she said, speaking of the conditions that saw 10-12m waves breaking over the spreaders.

Jakki said that, listening to the skeds during the early part of the race, she was convinced their journey would end in Eden like so many of yachts they watched retire.

'But they hung in - there was no complaining, those who were sick worked through it and they held it together,' added Jakki.

'As we got to the Iron Pot (at the mouth of the Derwent River) they all got a bit excited and things started to fall apart a bit and as we were virtually match-racing White Hot to the line, we had to calm down and refocus to come in ahead of them.'

The best reward though, may well be the reaction of her crew and friends, who said they'd be back again next year so long as Jakki is at the helm.

Jakki received a resounding reception when her effort was recognized at today's prizegiving for the 60th anniversary Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race at the Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania in Hobart.

Nicole Browne
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