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Age no Sailing Handicap

The annual Sydney to Hobart yacht race provides an opportunity to test age and ability against the elements. In the race so far age does not seem a problem. Two of the leading boats (on boat size adjusted times) are skippered by a 79 year old, Peter Kurts on Love and War, and an 81 year old, John Walker on Impeccable. Comparison to population numbers shows 5.4% of the population is aged 79 and over. Maybe for yachting we need to look at the Rich List where 15% are 79 and over.

Not so fortunate was the youngest crew member 18 year old Elizabeth Walsh, whose boat engine on Strewth failed to start on race day. A paradox of this sailing race is that boats must have functioning engines to be able to make it to port if dismasted.

Posted Sunday, 28 December 2003

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