It has been a clean start in Moreton Bay for this year’s Brisbane to Gladstone yacht race, with 30 boats competing in the event.
The 67th annual event started in Moreton Bay off Shorncliffe at 11:00am (AEST).
Boaties were philosophical about the weather, saying the trick would be to get as far north as quickly as possible.
Organisers expect the first boats will arrive into Gladstone Harbour on Saturday afternoon, with the smaller boats straggling in on Monday.
Many racing today are old hands, with some having competed in more than 50 Brisbane to Gladstone yacht races.
Queensland racer Black Jack led the field, followed by Tasmanian-registered yacht Alive.
There was much jostling prior to the race start, but the field has widened.
Despite the forecast, it has been fine weather, with winds of up to 15 knots.
Race director Nigel Statham said the winds this morning could favour the bigger boats.
“That weather looks to be fairly steady up until about Saturday night and as soon as Saturday night comes along, the wind drops right out,” he said.
“What we’re expecting to happen is the boats that can get up near Gladstone fastest – and that will be the biggest ones obviously – they stand probably the best chance of taking the title this year.
“I think the first boat will be either Black Jack or Alive and I would say they’re probably going to get in somewhere probably Saturday afternoon.
“In terms of the end of the fleet, well that really is just going to depend on that weather.
“It could be that once that wind really drops out, they stay out there until perhaps Monday.”
more info ….brisbanetogladstone.com.au
by Andree Withey