There's an irony about Sean Langman's latest record-beating run from Sydney to Hobart aboard his 60-foot trimaran Team Australia. In mock protest against the high-tech nature of the event, Langman put to sea in the smallest yacht in the fleet, Maluka, a rebuilt 80-year-old 30-foot gaffer in which he was last over the line for the second year running. In their latest trip, the family crew set a new elapsed time of 29 hours 52 minutes and 23 seconds. This bettered the previous record time — set last December by Wild Oats XI — by 12 hours 30 minutes 49 seconds. The multihull's top speed was 39.6 knots, her average about 21 knots.
Now in its eight year, next weekend's 2013 Sydney Harbour Regatta, March 9-10, will see more than 200 keelboats race in 24 divisions on eight courses over most of Sydney Harbour and offshore. Middle Harbour Yacht Club is hosting the event, with beach breakfasts from 8am and entertainment from 4.30pm over the weekend. See shr.mhyc.com.au.
Have hot boats returned after years of conservatism? If you were at the recent Miami boat show, you might answer yes. Inspired by the Mercedes G63 AMG, the 42-foot Huntress is the latest launch from the six-year collaboration between Cigarette and the prestige German car-maker. Five 350hp Mercury Verado race engines give a dashing top speed of 70 knots, or 130kmh. Once you get to your destination, there's a luxurious cabin with 1.8 metres of headroom, a large sofa that converts into a double bed, mini-galley, flatscreen television, Vacuflush toilet and shower. The price is $US750,000 (about $731,400) but that's exclusive of the 9.5 litres of petrol you'll burn every minute while on the pegs and in the Don Johnson white suit.
Events from game fishing tournaments to harbour paddle races and more were washed out right down the eastern seaboard last weekend. Thank heavens for autumn's imminent balmy weather then — if not this weekend, then most definitely in coming days and weeks as we head towards Easter. As it's arguably the very best boating season, might we suggest you cast the lines and take your boat for a dummy run again. Run the engines and engineering gear, ready the tackle and gear, and prepare for what a gambling man might wager is odds-on to be a cracking time afloat after the recent big wet.