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GCCM Gold Coast Mackay Yacht Race

Supermaxi Wild Thing 100 and classic Katwinchar enter the GCCM Gold Coast Mackay Yacht Race

Entries into Australia’s newest ocean race, the GCCM Gold Coast Mackay Yacht Race is heating up with Wild Thing 100, the newest 100-foot super maxi launched in 10 years, officially entering the fleet today.

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 lineup 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.

Supermaxi Wild Thing 100 © Bow Caddy Media
Supermaxi Wild Thing 100 © Bow Caddy Media

“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 Maritimo Katwinchar double-handed with Peter Vaiciurgis, the multiple Australian dinghy racing champion, in the GCCM Gold Coast Mackay race, following straight on from competing in the Noakes Sydney Gold Coast race.

With just 35 days till the start on 1st August, the GCCM Gold Coast Mackay Yacht Race will be boosting the racing pedigree of yachts arriving on the Gold Coast and Mackay, with Wild Thing 100 and Katwinchar representing the full breadth of Australian yacht racing.

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 fantastic support from sponsors and race village preparations well under way. The new race will also help feed boats into the northern race weeks, such as those hosted by Whitsunday Sailing Club in Airlie Beach and Hamilton Island Yacht Club.

The GCCM GOLD COAST MACKAY YACHT RACE kicks off not before 10am on the 1st of August, with an epic offshore start line straight off the beach in front of Cavill Avenue, Surfers Paradise. The Race Village at Mackay Marina will open Saturday 3rd August through to Tuesday August 6th.

Entries are open until 17th July via the official race website,

by Adrian Bold

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