HOBART, Australia (AP) — Andoo Comanche won line honors in the 77th edition of the Sydney to Hobart yacht race, marking a triumphant return for the super maxi.
The 100-foot yacht crossed the River Derwent finish line just before 1 a.m. local time on Wednesday with a time of 1 day, 11 hours, 56 minutes and 48 seconds.
It is the fourth line honors win for Andoo Comanche, which had not sailed the 628-nautical mile (1,170-kilometer or about 720-mile) blue-water classic since winning in 2019.
Comanche became the first yacht to take out line honors under three different owners or skippers.
Skippered by John Winning Jr., the pre-race favorite at one stage appeared to have a chance of breaking the line honors record time it set in 2017 but eventually finished about three hours off the mark.
Winning was joined on the crossing by his father John, who had competed in the Sydney to Hobart race in the 1970s.
“It’s pretty emotional. These are the types of things that you look back on and say you’re glad you got those opportunities,” Winning Jr. said. “He’s a big golfer and I hate golf, so it’s the only sport we can do together.”
Comanche held off a strong challenge from fellow super maxi LawConnect, which finished second.
Defending champion Black Jack and nine-time winner Hamilton Island Wild Oats were further back in third and fourth respectively.
At Monday’s start, Comanche overcame a self-imposed penalty turn amid a dramatic opening to the race to take the lead as the fleet benefited from northeasterly winds.
The race sails from Sydney down the south coast of New South Wales state and across Bass Strait to Hobart, the capital of the island state of Tasmania.
The race was not held in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.
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