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Yachting: Ichi Ban declared overall Sydney-Hobart winner

Yachting: Ichi Ban declared overall Sydney-Hobart winner

File photo of Australian yacht Ichi Ban (centre) sailing out of Sydney Harbour at the start of the Sydney to Hobart yacht race on Dec 26, 2018. (Peter PARKS/AFP)

SYDNEY: Australian yacht Ichi Ban won the bluewater classic Sydney-Hobart handicap honours for being the boat that performed best according to size, race officials announced on Monday (Dec 30).

The gruelling 628-nautical mile (1,163-kilometre) race down Australia's east coast, which started in Sydney Harbour on Dec 26, awards trophies for a line honours winner and an overall handicap winner.

The TP52 Ichi Ban, skippered by Matt Allen, crossed the finish line in 11th place on Saturday night, about 12 hours behind line honours winner Comanche.

"This is Matt's third win - twice as a skipper, one as a crew member back in the '80s - so we are delighted to announce that really well deserved victory," Cruising Yacht Club of Australia commodore Paul Billingham said.

Ichi Ban, which first won the Sydney-Hobart in 2017, finished in two days, six hours, 18 minutes and five seconds.

But the crew had to wait until others completed their race to find out if they had the best corrected time to lift the Tattersall Cup, which they eventually did on Monday morning.

Allen said it was a "great thrill" to win the 75th Sydney-Hobart race, saying his crew was "ecstatic" to achieve the notoriously difficult task.

"There is pressure all the way from Sydney to Hobart and then you need to beat all the other boats of different sizes," he told public broadcaster ABC.

"We were leading the race most of the time from Sydney but you need the weather gods to help you a little as well to get the overall win."

"The Sydney to Hobart yacht race is so hard to win and it has been a long wait since we have been at the dock in Hobart to wait to be declared the overall winner for 2019."

The overall result came after Quest moved to third place on the overall leaderboard by winning a protest against Envy Scooters for failing to keep clear of Quest on starboard tack and forcing the other boat to bear away to avoid a collision.

Envy Scooters was penalised two hours and dropped to sixth place overall as a result.

Source: AFP/de

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