16 Mitala Street, Newport NSW 2106   Tel: 61 2 9998 3700


16 Mitala Street, Newport NSW 2106
Tel: 61 2 9998 3700

Sydney to Auckland Ocean Race 2021: Centrepiece of major summer international events

MEDIA RELEASE                                                                                         12 September, 2019


To start on Sydney Harbour at 1pm on 30 January 2021, the inaugural Sydney to Auckland Ocean Race 2021, organised by the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club (RPAYC) in NSW in association with the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron (RNZYS), is already gaining momentum with over 100 Expressions of Interest received. Credit: Tilly Lock MediaCredit: Tilly Lock Media


The race will be the centrepiece of a summer of major yachting events in Australia and New Zealand, starting with the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race on 26 December, and finishing in Auckland Harbour in time for RNZYS’s 150th Anniversary celebrations (for full details and visit: www.rnzys.org.nz)  and the 36th America’s Cup.


Sporting rivalry between Australia and our friends across the paddock is well-documented, making this an enticing opportunity for sailors in both countries, and from outside, to take part. Foreign entities have already shown interest, lured by the whole package. And for international parties wishing to take part, RPAYC is talking to Sevenstar Yacht Transport to provide shipping at the best possible rates.

“It is an exciting time in yachting. The Sydney to Auckland Ocean Race 2021 will be a special race in itself, but careful consideration also went into the timing of our race. It’s placement on the sailing calendar offers the keen yachtie plenty of options before and after the race,” RPAYC spokesperson, Rob McClelland said.


“Down the track, we will also have further exciting news to share with prospective entrants in relation to the race,” ended McClelland, not wanting to give too much away at this early stage.


A Category 1 race of 1250 nautical miles, the Sydney to Auckland Ocean Race 2021 is open to offshore racing yachts, inclusive of a double-handed division (IRC, ORCi and PHS categories) superyachts, ocean racing multihulls (OMR rated)and incorporates a rally for cruisers. The race also provides cruising opportunities in New Zealand, the Pacific and to home ports before and after.


“The Club has been a pioneer in NSW in including and encouraging multihulls and double-handed entries into our offshore races, in particular our major events such as the Pittwater to Coffs Harbour Yacht Race and the Pittwater to Paradise Regatta,” McClelland commented.


Among the early entries for the race, which finishes off RNZYS at Westhaven Marina where crowds will be gathered to welcome boats in, are RPAYC members Richard Hudson and Ian Edwards.

2019 Laser 4.7 World Youth Championships – Kingston, Ontario, Canada

What an experience Canada was. A trip filled with learning, hard racing and good times. 

As we arrived in Kingston I was filled with excitement and some expected nerves as it was my first international regatta. After meeting all the kids on the Aussie team, I settled in and felt more comfortable as they were all so outgoing and friendly. Setting up the charter was a breeze and within no time I was out there with the team training hard to gather as much information about the venue as I could. The conditions varied but was, for the majority of the time, a light 8 knot thermal breeze which was highly shifty and unpredictable. It was great because we were able to do practice races with some other countries such as Singapore, Italy, Hungary and Switzerland giving me the opportunity to race against new athletes.

After the 5 days of training we had 2 rest days where the team went for a walk to the pier, went to get lunch and did more team bonding. At the end of the rest days we had the opening ceremony. It was such a surreal feeling wearing the Australian gear, representing my country and my club RPAYC. The opening ceremony was great as our gear was highly desired by the athletes from other countries (especially the inflatable kangaroos!) so we were able to meet more new people and the whole night was so much fun.

The next morning was racing. Day 1 was considerably light air, gusting to 7 knots. The race committee sent us out and managed to start a race. I was in the lead until they abandoned racing because of the lack of wind which left me disappointed but impressed with my performance. The race committee ended up sending us in meaning no racing day 1.

Day 2 rolled around and that morning I was eager to head out as there was a 15 knot sea breeze forecast which ended up being 20 gusting 25 knots. This was my favourite day of racing as the heavy wind made the racing fitness based. Especially because the race committee decided on 3 races to make up for no racing on day 1.  Whoever got fatigued the least was getting good results. My results for the day were a 21, 19 and 18 which I was thrilled with. These results put me in 36th after day 2. All the hard work with Tana at Sail Fit really paid off!

2019 John Messenger Women’s Match Racing Regatta - Costanzo 2nd Place

CYCA triumphs at John Messenger Women’s Match Racing Regatta

Jess Tavener, Emma Byrne, India Howard (skipper), Angelique Kear, Jess Grimes and Peter Messenger (Messenger family representative). Credit - CYCA

The Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s (CYCA) India Howard, Jess Grimes, Emma Byrne, Jess Tavener and Ange Kear have won the 2019 John Messenger Women’s Match Racing Regatta which has been run annually since 1996, defeating Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club's Juliet Costanzo 2-0 in the finals.

Before Howard and Costanzo reached the finals, the two Australian teams had to beat their cross Tasman rivals from New Zealand, the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron (RNZYS), whom secured two semi-final berths and finished in third and fourth after the round robin.

In the first semi-final, round robin winner Juliet Costanzo chose to race RNZYS's Emma Hyde and defeated her 2-0. Costanzo was the clear leader after the round robin, winning thirteen of her fourteen races.

This left another Australia versus New Zealand semi-final, matching India Howard who finished second after the round robin on 12-2, to race Megan Thomson who completed the round robin with a sore card of 11-3. Their semi-final went to the third and final race with Howard coming back from 0-1 down to win 2-1.

In the finals, Howard and her team executed stronger starts and converted both early leads to race victories to secure their first John Messenger Women’s Match Racing Regatta title.

“We are really pleased with how the weekend went. We developed as a team throughout the regatta and got it all together for the final. It’s a fantastic result for us,” commented Howard after racing.

In the seventh and eights sail off, their was an upset victory with RNZYS’s Brooke Adamson, who was previously without a race victory, winning the sail off 2-1. In the fifth and sixth sail off, Maddie O’Shea beat CYCA’s Chelsea Williams 2-1 to take fifth place.

Final placings:

1.       India Howard – Cruising Yacht Club of Australia

2.       Juliet Costanzo – Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club

3.       Megan Thomson – Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron

4.       Emma Hyde - Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron

5.       Maddie O’Shea – Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron

6.       Chelsea Williams – Cruising Yacht Club of Australia

7.       Brooke Adamson - Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron

8.       Tanya Kelly – Mooloolaba Yacht Club

Still time to buy a 5.5m for the Worlds in January 2020!

There is still time to buy a 5.5m for the Worlds coming up from the 3rd January to 13th January 2020 at the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club.   There will be more and more boats arriving over the next few weeks and there are many club members that have already bought boats to compete.  There are now 14 RPAYC boats that are being worked up for the Worlds!  These are:


Classics Pre 1970:
Kings Cross

Evolutions 1970-1993:
Arunga X
Shank (new name not known yet)

Moderns Post 1994
Alpha Crucis
Ku-Ring-Gai 2
Beta Crucis 

There is still plenty of time to join the throng as there are many 5.5ms that are for sale.  Please see the for sale lists below.  It is easy to look up the history of any 5.5m on the class database by just searching the name or sail number https://5.5inventory.org/  

Hoegh Autoliners are one of our major sponsors and are offering inexpensive RoRo shipping from Europe of 5.5ms to Australia for the Worlds (around $5.5K).   The last dates to ship from Europe in time for the Worlds is the end of October.  So there has never been a better to look and consider joining us for the Worlds!

After the Worlds the 5.5m you will have a great club boat.  Easy to sail with a self tacking jib and requiring only 2-3 crew.  Remember you never really own a 5.5m you just look after it for the next generation!

If you need any more information on any of the boats or contact details email General Boat Enquires link here https://www.5.5class.org/contact

Click Here to view all boats for sale 

Australians prepped and ready for 5.5 Metre World Championship

In little more than four months’ time, the 5.5 Metre Class World Championship 2020 and its lead-in events will be heading to Pittwater, where the locals are prepped, ready and excited for what lies ahead at the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club (RPAYC) hosted event. 
To be held from 9-13 January, 15 years on from the last time the 5.5 Metre Worlds was held in Australia, the Scandinavian Gold Cup, Alfreds Gold Cup, the Royal Kaag Classic Cup and Hanko Evolution Cup will take place beforehand. 
Early on, 14 boats are already entered. They represent five nations, including The Bahamas, Italy, Germany, UK and of course, Australia. Interest has also been received from Norway, France and Switzerland among others.   
And as we go to press, two brand new boats, expected to make their Worlds debut in Australia, are nearing completion at the Wilke boatyard in Switzerland.   
Multiple former world champions and runners-up, plus top placegetters from the 2019 Worlds, will escape their European winter for Down Under to take part in what will no doubt be a memorable event, both on and off the water. 
It remains to be seen whether the winner will come from the local or international pool of talent. Statistics usually point to those who know the waters like the backs of their hands; in other words, a local. But not always.
To that end, look no further than successful RPAYC one-design sailor, John Bacon, with his crew of Terry Wetton and James Mayjor (Ku-Ring-Gai). In early August, the trio arrived home from the Worlds in Helsinki, Finland armed with the Evolution Worlds Trophy (5.5M’s built from 1970 to 1983) and Hanko Evolution Cup, having dominated both events. 
Fellow RPAYC member, Martin Cross and crew of Bob Stoddard and Martin Bunch (Beta Crucis), also sailed well, scoring victory in one race to finish ninth overall. 
Cross, who doubles as the Australian class president, commented: "The 5.5M class has an amazingly talented and friendly group of sailors. However, like any top class, mistakes on the course are punished and you rapidly fall down the fleet. 
Bob, Martin and I, as a newly formed crew in a new boat, were very encouraged to win a race at the recent Worlds, but consistently is the name of the game. We now have a few months to train on the water, tune up the crew and the boat to improve our performance on the Palm Beach Circle in January."
Australia has a rich history in the class that made its Olympic debut in 1952. At the 1964 Tokyo Games, RPAYC member Bill Northam and crew won the nation’s first Olympic gold medal, with Barranjoey. In their honour, Australian Sailing began awarding the ‘Barranjoey pin’ to athletes who help create Australia’s proud and successful history in the sport. 
Norman Booth (Southern Cross III) took Silver at the 1965 Worlds, and in 1970, Olympian David Forbes won the Worlds with Carabella. Booth came back in 1974 with Southern Cross IV, to win the Worlds in Sydney.  
Frank Tolhurst fit in short sailing stints around business and incredibly won the 1976 Worlds with Arunga. He won a second time in 1978 (Arunga III) and twice finished second; in 1980 and 1981. There were others, but it has been a gold drought for Australia since Roy Tutty (Rhapsody) won in 1981.
The Australian International 5.5 Metre Association extends a warm invitation to any past and present Australian 5.5M sailors who have competed at previous Worlds or Gold Cups to join them on Friday, 3 January, at the RPAYC for the Scandinavian Gold Cup, ‘Alfreds’ Gold Cup, Kaag Cup and Hanko Cup opening Cocktail Party.   
Attendees will have an opportunity to re-acquaint with old friends, share stories and see the latest 5.5M designs before the start of the Scandinavian Gold Cup the next day. Contact Martin Cross, the Australian class president for more details and to book your place: martin.g.cross@gmail.com 
“We invite the old and new Australian legends of the 5.5m class to come and take part; let’s make it a great showing against the internationals,” Cross says.
For those wishing to emulate some of the 'legends' in the 5.5 Metre there is still time to buy a boat, and if necessary, ship it to Australia at extremely competitive rates, courtesy of Worlds major sponsor Hoegh Autoliners.   
Please see boats for sale at: https://www.5.5class.org/boats-for-sale 
Shipping information and prices (final shipping date from Antwerp Belgium to get to the Worlds in time will be around the end of October): https://www.5.5class.org/single-post/2019/08/08/Newsletter-4-Australian-Gold-Cup-and-Worlds.  
Online entry, Notice of Race and all information: https://www.rpayc.com.au/sailing/5-5m-world-champ-2020
Di Pearson, 5.5 Metre Worlds media
Further media information:  Di Pearson, phone: 0410 792 131
About Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club
The Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club is based on Pittwater on Sydney’s Northern Beaches and offers year round inshore and offshore racing, cruising, centreboard dinghy racing, sail training and courses plus has a large marina accommodating up to 352 vessels. There is also a modern boatyard with comprehensive marine services to help maintain your vessel and parking is plentiful. For more information, go to: https://www.rpayc.com.au/ 
Close up action at the 2019 Worlds in Helsinki - Robert Deaves pic                                                                          Martin Cross at the helm of Beta Crucis at the 2019 Worlds - Robert Deaves pic   

Alfred's Sailors compete in New Caledonia

The Alfred’s was represented by two teams last week over in New Caledonia, for the Aircalin Match Racing Regatta, held out of the New Caledonia Yacht Club (CNC).

Niall Powers led his youth (under 23) team with YD sailors Antony Hawke, Jasmine Bridge and Cam Whiteside.

Club yachtsman of the year Chris Way has also decided to have a bit of a dabble, trying his hand in match racing, after enjoying it so much in the clubs prestigious David Lukins Memorial Regatta.

Crewing for Chris is Thomas Brewer and Andrew “Rob” Hudson.

Day 1 got underway in an 18 knot south easterly.

Ted Anderson, (the race officer) made it clear to be prepared for a long day, and it certainly ended up being the case. With 26 flights in the round robin, the racing continued from 1000hrs through to 1730hrs, with 13 flights been completed.

Powers and his team had a pleasing day with 3 wins and 2 losses. The last race of the day proved to be a nail biter with Powers and his crew undertaking a penalty turn right on the finish line to win by the smallest of margins. “Not a faultless day for us, but all in all it’s been very encouraging the way we have started to build as a team” commented a reflective Powers.

Chris Way and his team were exciting to watch , with sudden strokes of brilliance and some other “interesting” manoeuvres. One such moment was receiving his first ever Black Flag, when Tom Picot CNC got three penalty turns on him in the prestart.

However, Chris managed to then produce an upset in the next match by beating the top ranked youth crew from the RNZYS to finish the day with 3wins and 3 losses.

By the end of the first-round robin, both RPAYC teams had managed to make the top 8 out of the 13 entrants, qualifying as the only Australian teams to do so.

Both Powers and Way were tied on points, however since Way beat Powers in the tie-break, he got to nab 7th seed spot.

Both teams had challenging quarter finals, with neither team able to progress to the semi-finals, however both teams showed promise during these matches, leading around the course at times.

In the end Powers got to vs Way again for the 7-8 sail off, with Way crossing the line first, only to be notified that he started early, thus giving Niall Powers and his team bragging rights at the Alfred’s and also top Australians.

Local team led by Tom Picot ended up winning the regatta in both the open and youth category.

We hopefully look forward to welcoming Tom Picot for the Alfred’s prestigious Harken Youth Match Racing Regatta in November this year.

Full Results Here





The Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club - RPAYC is a yacht racing and sailing club based on Pittwater.

The yacht club offers year round inshore and offshore racing, cruising, centreboard dinghy racing, sail training and courses plus has a large marina accommodating up to 352 vessels.

There is also a modern boatyard with comprehensive marine services to help maintain your vessel.

Membership, including family membership is now available.

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