And We Have A Sidney-Hobart Yacht Race Winner!

Author: .....
Source: BBC
Date: December 29, 2015

A dramatic finale to Australia's Sydney to Hobart sailing race saw the American yacht Comanche mount an unlikely comeback to claim victory.

The race was held in terrible weather conditions, with almost a third of the yachts forced to retire.
Comanche's victory came despite serious damage caused by hitting a submerged object.

The two-day race is considered one of the world's toughest. It pits amateur sailors against professional crews.

Skipper Ken Read said at one point he considered retiring from the race but decided to attempt running repairs on the damaged boat.

"I've sailed around the world two and a half times and I thought I'd seen it all but that is one really tough body of water.

"The people who have done this race something like 25 times, God bless 'em, either they're the dumbest people on earth or the hardest people on earth.

"Probably a combination of the two," he told ABC News.

Organisers say this year's was event was one of the toughest of recent years. The conditions forced 32 of the 108 entries to retire, with high winds shredding sails and breaking one ship's mast.

Comanche co-owner Kristy Clark, the first female owner to win the race, was also a crew member. She said she felt "pure terror at one stage".

The 100-foot (30-metre) yacht crossed the line 50 nautical miles ahead of Australian yacht Ragamuffin 100 and third-placed Rambler.

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