Thursday, July 11, 2024


Mackay and Whitsunday Life

New And Classic Yachts Steer Excitement In GCCM Gold Coast Mackay Race

Australia’s newest and largest racing yacht, as well as the smallest and oldest, have entered the 2024 GCCM Gold Coast Mackay Yacht Race.

The GCCM Gold Coast Mackay Yacht Race begins to intensify with the official entry of Wild Thing 100 – one that is said to be the newest 100-foot super maxi to be launched in the past decade.

Grant Wharington, winner of the 2003 Rolex Sydney Hobart bought the boat previously
known as Beau Geste with co-owner Adrian Seiffert, renaming the Botin 80 design to Stefan
Racing before its extension and relaunch as Wild Thing 100 in 2023.

“Being residents of the Gold Coast, we’re excited for the thrilling prospect of a spinnaker start with an offshore breeze, with our iconic skyline and beaches making for a fantastic spectator event,” said Mr Wharington.

In stark contrast to the ultra-modern Wild Thing 100, the stellar race line-up now also features Maritimo Katwinchar, the classic 32-foot timber former ketch built in 1904 in London’s Watney Brewery.  

Competing in the 1951 Sydney to Hobart, Katwinchar was found dilapidated by the Australian boat builders Maritimo, who lovingly and painstakingly restored her to its former glory with no expense spared, attracting quite the crowd when it competed in the 2019 Rolex Sydney Hobart.

“We look forward to being part of the inaugural race, with the attraction and challenge of
racing through the various islands up the Queensland coast presenting a fantastic experience not to be missed.  

“And the sports-mad town of Mackay really knows how to put on a party!” said Mr Michael Spies, who will be racing Katwinchar double-handed with Peter Vaiciurgis, the multiple Australian dinghy racing champion in the GCCM Gold Coast Mackay race.

With just 35 days till the start date on August 1, the GCCM Gold Coast Mackay Yacht Race will be boosting the racing pedigree of yachts arriving on the Gold Coast, following the Noakes Sydney Gold Coast race in late July.

Southport Yacht Club Vice Commodore of Sail Glenn Burrell said the timing of the Gold Coast Mackay race will create a real buzz of excitement both at the start and finish line, with Race Village preparations well underway.  
The event will begin at 10am on August 1 with an epic offshore start line straight off the beach in front of Cavill Avenue, Surfers Paradise. The Race Village at Mackay Marina opens Saturday, August 3 through to Tuesday, August 6.

Entries are open until July 17 via the official race website:

New and classic yachts stir excitement in the 2024 GCCM Gold Coast Mackay Race, featuring Australia’s newest 100-foot super maxi and a restored 1904 timber ketch. Images supplied

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