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Sail Paradise: Black Jack signals next challenge

Peter Harburg's Black Jack. 2013 Rolex Sydney Hobart Race. (Credit Andrea Francolini)

Peter Harburg's Black Jack. 2013 Rolex Sydney Hobart Race. (Credit Andrea Francolini)

Having claimed an impressive fourth place across the line in the recent Rolex Sydney Hobart Race, Peter Harburg has set Southport Yacht Club’s Sail Paradise regatta as the next challenge for his Volvo 70, Black Jack.

The series, which will be contested on courses off the Gold Coast’s famous beaches, is scheduled from March 14 to 16.

“We love everything about Sail Paradise,” Harburg said, “so we will certainly be there.”

His sailing master, sailmaker Mark ‘Squark’ Bradford, was equally enthusiastic about the series.
“There is no better place to race offshore in this part of the world,” Bradford said. “The courses and sailing conditions are ideal, and the hospitality at the yacht club second to none.

“We are looking forward to some great racing as part of our build-up to the Brisbane to Gladstone race.”

Black Jack was built specially for the 2011-12 Volvo Ocean race round the world as a Spanish entry. She was launched under the sponsorship of Telefonica and won the first three legs of the gruelling event.

Harburg purchased the 21.5 metre long racer early last year, shipped her to Australia and had modifications made to suit local conditions.

“We were really pleased with our result in the Hobart race,” Harburg said this week. “Our mainsail split in half more than 40 miles from the finish and we had to then sail under a tiny storm trysail for the rest of the race. Even so, we were able to come from behind and finish fourth across the line.”

Both Harburg and Bradford said they were hoping other top-line racing yachts in south-east Queensland would join them at Sail Paradise and enjoy some exceptional racing.

Sail Paradise 2014 is open to racing and cruising monohulls, multihulls and off-the-beach sailboats.

Preliminary details for Sail Paradise 2014 can be found on the regatta website, here.

For more information please contact Bronwen Ince: (07) 5591 3500 – enquiries@southportyachtclub.com.au

By Bronwen Ince, Sail Paradise

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