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Gold Coast sailing Race Month: January 2016

Gold Coast sailing Race Month: January 2016

by November 14, 2015

The Gold Coast is the place to be for yacht racing this January. With the Coffs to Paradise Race on 7 January, followed by Sail Paradise Regatta from 13 to 17 January, and then Surf to City Yacht Race on 23 January—and a host of supporting events throughout the month.

From Coffs to Coast

Every year, good sailors face a dilemma: “Do I join the Sydney-Hobart Yacht Race, or do I join the Pittwater to Coffs Harbour Yacht Race—warmer, shorter, with a holiday feel?” (Did I mention warm?)

The Pittwater to Coffs race starts every year on 2 January. As the boats leave Pittwater, just north of Sydney, they turn left and head for the warmer weather of Coffs Harbour. A lovely one- or two-day sail, it generally sees all of the boats at Coffs by 4 January. On the the 5th, there is the annual Round Solitary race which is about a six-hour sail and an enjoyable day. And then, there is…uhmm…home.

This year you can add one more thing to your mid-north coast experience. Instead of ending at Coffs, come on through to the Gold Coast. After an extra day in Coffs, and enjoy all that it has to offer that time of year with good restaurants, carnivals and a holiday feel. Then, on 7 January, be part of the Coffs to Paradise Race staged by the Southport Yacht Club (SYC).

Sail up along the Northern NSW coastline absorbing the magnificent views of Yamba, Byron Bay and Kingscliff. Rounding Point Danger, your breath is taken by the scenic view of the entire Gold Coast in one beautiful picture. A short run up along the beaches and you are at the finish line on the northern end of the Gold Coast. A lovely 24 to 30 hours is all you need to get you to Australia’s holiday playground. We promise it will not be cold!

gold coast sailing race 3

Sailing in paradise

Basking in the magnificent Gold Coast weather, go for a sail, spend time with the family. This year, SYC’s Sail Paradise Regatta will be from 13 to 17 January. It is a five-day regatta with a rest day in the middle. The race divisions include: IRC, ORC, PHS, cruising, sports boats, trailables, multihulls, etchells, off-the-beach dinghies, and catamarans.

The schedule looks like this:

Days 1 and 2: Offshore racing along the magnificent backdrop of the Gold Coast beaches.

Day 3: Lay day with everyone invited to Southport Yacht Club’s Dux resort on the South Stradbroke Island—a 50-minute cruise from the SYC Main Beach Clubhouse. There will be activities for the whole family.

Days 4 and 5: Inshore and offshore racing.

Off-water entertainment will be included—a taste of the familiar Gold Coast holiday experience. An evening at the Club will offer fun activities for crew members to participate in with fabulous prizes on offer.

gold coast sailing race 2

Surf, sail and city

The annual Surf to City Yacht Race (Gold Coast to Brisbane) will have a little more significance this year for the Gold Coast. Every year this race is a major event on the Southeast Queensland racing calendar. This year, it will close the sailing month of January.

Run on 23 January, the boats race north from the Gold Coast to the Brisbane area. Around 100 boats are expected to contest this sought-after trophy.

It is one of the Queensland Cruising Yacht Club’s (QCYC) major events of the year.

In past years, visiting boats start arriving two days prior to the event in preparation for the race. This year they will have the opportunity to arrive 12 days prior and enter the Sail Paradise Regatta the week beforehand. Visiting boats will be given free berthing at the Southport Yacht Club if they are competing in both events. As there is a week between the events, visitors can stay and enjoy all the Gold Coast has to offer including some supporting races to keep the boats and crew tuned up.

By Ray McMahon