Media Release 18 September 2017
Event: Club Marine Pittwater to Paradise Regatta January 2 – 9, 2018 hosted by the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club (NSW) & Southport Yacht Club (QLD)
Rikki’s new Aussie adventure
New Zealand yacht Rikki is confirmed for the Club Marine Pittwater to Paradise Regatta and the bright red Reichel-Pugh 42 is due to arrive in Pittwater mid-December, well in time for the single line start on January 2, 2018.
Owner Ray Haslar has lost count of the number of Tasman Sea crossings he’s made for various Australian East Coast bluewater events including 15 Rolex Sydney Hobarts and three of the Cruising Yacht Club’s midwinter Sydney Gold Coast races.
He’s decided this is the year to bring his one-off RP design built in 2011 from its Bay of Islands home to Aussie shores for a new adventure.
“Personally I like coming to Oz, it makes for a real adventure and the competition is always good,” Haslar said from abroad. “For the crew from Kerikeri Cruising Club it will be their first Pittwater to Paradise Regatta and we’re looking forward to it. Having a series after the coastal race makes the long trip worthwhile for us.”
Other than removing 300kg off the bulb given the boat was originally built a little too stiff, long-time yachtsman Ray and wife Lesley have campaigned Rikki without major alteration and taken out local titles including overall winner of New Zealand’s prestigious 2015 Coastal Classic Yacht Race.
Weather permitting Haslar estimates a seven day crossing from Kerikeri in the North Island to clear customs at Newcastle, north of Sydney, around December 14. The timing allows a couple of weeks to recover and make the switch from delivery to racing mode before the Kiwi crew fly in and the New Year race starts from a laid line to the north of Palm Beach headland at 1300hrs on January 2.