Australians love their sport. A visit to this country isn’t complete without taking in a bit of Australia’s sporting fever. Australians love all kinds of sport. They love games enjoyed internationally; like cricket, rugby and soccer. They also have games all their own like AFL. But their are a few events which enjoy almost cult status in Australia.
I’m taking about the Melbourne Cup Horse Race, and the Sydney to Hobart yacht race. These are the games that bring the country to a stand still.
The race was born in 1945, and begins in Sydney, New South Wales on boxing day and finishes in Hobart, Tasmania.
All star cast
This year, with a massive 96 yachts registered to race, it will certainly be something to watch. Many boats are now racing in hope of raising money for charity, and some are even crewed by celebrities. The yacht, Perpetual Loyal does both those things. The Perpetual Loyal is sailing this year in hopes of raising money for the Loyal Foundation. Some of their crew this year are big names in Australia as well.
- Tom Slingsby: Olympic gold medalist, America’s cup winner on Team Oracle and reigning world champion sailor
- Phil Waugh: Australian Rugby Union legend and former captain of the Warratahs
- Jude Bolton: Former Sydney Swans legend midfielder with two premierships
- Guillaume Brahimi: French-born head chef at 3 hatted restaurant Guillaume at Bennelong
- Larry Emdur: Emdur is currently co-host of The Morning Show on Channel 7 and two time Sydney to Hobart competitor
- Karl Stefanovic: Australian Gold Logie-winning television presenter, co-host of the Nine Network’s breakfast program, Today.
- Jessica Watson: Youngest person to sail non-stop and unassisted around the world. 2011 Young Australian of the Year.
How to watch the race
In person: You can join in the fun either on land or on water. If you are going to try to view the start of the race from Sydney Harbour, you will want to claim your position early as 600,00 people will also be having similar ideas. Alternatively you can join in from the water from the “spectator craft” area. Any one can be out in the water – you will even see people in kayaks – but keep in mind that it will be very busy, pay attention, follow the instructions of race officials, and keep well clear of the exclusion zone.
On television: If you are in Australia you can find race coverage on the 7 network as well as ABC. Some international coverage will also be possible with the Australia Network. However if you don’t have access to any of these – and many international race fans do not, there is always the good ole’ internet…
On the internet: The best way to watch the race and get updates is via the official Rolex Sydney Hobart website. As well as videos, twitter and facebook updates, you can also check out the “yacht tracker”. Each boat has been fitted with a GPS tracker, so you can see in real time the position of the entire fleet, or track a particular boat if you like.