FROM 1-33. Sydney-Hobart Race 2005

Dec 31 2005 - 1554hrs EDT

1554hrs 31 Dec 2005 EDT 42’53”S 147’20”E Ref 682

[ed: finished the Rolex 2005 Sydney to Hobart!  A long slow tedious struggle up the Derwent with The Examiner opting for light to no breeze as the test today.  The finish time slipped and slipped and slipped, but we got there.  Web Slaves Stephen and Malcolm were joined by 4 other Berriphiles on Mal’s lovely boat, Wildfire, as we spent 10 hours cruising down the Derwent and escorting Berri up to the finish at 3:54pm on News Years Eve.  A huge welcome at Constitution Dock, media all over the place, and much consultation and congratulations all around.  I (web Slave Stephen) am now back in Sydney and will publish photos and stuff soon… promise.  Thanks for your support.  Alex will be back online soon.]

Using Google Earth?  This is the track of Wildfire heading down the Derwent and returning to the finish with Berri.

Rolex Web Site article here

Some photos of the arrival and finish:

For those with bandwidth and a decent connection, this is a 6mb video of the finish – only about 10 secs!


[ed: from Alex later…]

We needed all 15 or so P’s – patience, persistence, prudence,  perseverance and the rest to get here. We rounded Tasman Island in the dark last night and trickled slowly into Storm Bay which was anything but stormy and then around the Pot into the Derwent with our two faithful, hardworking magnificent web slaves, Malcolm Robinson and Steve Jackson tagging along in Malcolm’s very much faster boat Wildfire. And Colin arrived in Ceilidh (got it right that time!)  And then we stopped. Almost. We just managed to creeeeep up the river with no speed registered on the log but a smidgin faster than the outgoing current.  Finally, near the Garrow, a little breeze from behind and we set the big purple and  gold kite and finished slowly but in style.

And what a welcome – Hobart always turns it on for the backmarkers but this was different and very special – it seemed that there were thousands of people on the dock and the other boats, all hooting and yelling and Geoff Lavis, the Commodore was there with a bottle of Bundy – thanks Geoff –  and someone else with the traditional slab of Boags and Andy Rice from Rolex Media who we last spoke to in Plymouth and friends and relations and the media and hundreds of people some of whom had flown in from all over the place – a couple from Western Australia and Hilary and Rosie and Eve from sydney and old uncle Tom Cobbley and all…truly wonderful welcome and thanks to you all for being there.

And CYC/RYCT have asked us to attend the prizegiving tomorrow too.  Interesting.

And then we have to think about sailing back and writing the book and doing some work and getting the running shoes on again for me with London Marathon 2007 in the distance. We will be in touch with all the potential starters soon. And I have to get my hair cut.

WOOOOHOOOOOOOOO – Huge relief – Happy New Year everyone – for once we made it in in time for the fireworks and John’s real birthday and we’ll be thinking of you all out there having your own celebrations. Thanks for your enthusiasm, encouragement, support, personal messages, poems, stories and lovely emails – it has been an astonishing year and we will keep it all going for at least as long as it takes to get back to Sydney. Please don’t go away yet….

Special thanks to the teams at RORC and CYC for giving it purpose and looking after us so well, and to Rolex for the media coverage – really nice for a little boat at the bac k of the fleet to get a bit of attention – keep it up!

I must now get to the fireworks and then sleep for about a week – actually, probably about 4 hours, but more in one go than for a long time.

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