The super maxi Black Jack leads Sydney in the Hobart yacht race


The yachts make their way shortly after the start of the 76th Annual Sydney Hobart Yacht Race in Sydney on Sunday, December 26, 2021. Last year's race was called off the week before it started due to quarantine issues related to the coronavirus, but the 2021 edition continues with the implementation of mass virus screening protocols.  (Dan Himbrechts / AAP Image via AP)

The yachts make their way shortly after the start of the 76th Annual Sydney Hobart Yacht Race in Sydney on Sunday, December 26, 2021. Last year’s race was called off the week before it started due to quarantine issues related to the coronavirus, but the 2021 edition continues with the implementation of mass virus screening protocols. (Dan Himbrechts / AAP Image via AP)

PA

Monaco Yacht Club’s super maxi Black Jack held an 18 nautical mile lead over compatriot maxi SHK Scallywag on Monday in a race from Sydney to Hobart hit hard by the retirement of nearly half of the fleet due to rough seas.

More than 24 hours after the start of the annual race from Sydney Harbor to Hobart in the island state of Tasmania, Black Jack is expected to finish the race on Tuesday evening based on current weather conditions. The race started on Sunday.

Stefan Racing was third and the third super-maxi in the race, LawConnect, was fourth.

There were only 42 boats left in the race on the initial start list after high seas and winds decimated the fleet overnight on Sunday evening. A total of 28 yachts had abandoned since the start of the race.

Sailors returning to Sydney said it was the rough seas that caused most of the problems rather than the southerly winds they were pushing through.

“The breeze was 33.34 knots which is not that bad,” said Declan Brennan, a member of the No Limit crew, whose boat abandoned after one of the crew suffered. a dislocated shoulder.

“It’s odd, these weren’t angry conditions, it was just a very short and sharp seaway. The seaway was so inconsistent we just bounced around. “

There were no other reports of injuries to crew members on other boats.

Last year’s race was called off the week before it started due to coronavirus-related quarantine issues, but the 2021 edition continues with mass virus testing protocols in place. Skippers have been advised that boats must immediately withdraw from the race if a crew member receives a message from health authorities that they have tested positive for COVID-19.

The 628 nautical mile (1170 km, or approximately 720 mile) race starts in Sydney along the southern coast of New South Wales and passes through Hobart.

In 2017, Comanche set the race record after finishing in 1 day, 9 hours, 15 minutes and 24 seconds.

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