Whisper's Echo

Whisper's Echo

Whisper's Echo

Every sport has a niche, a small group of competitors that raise the bar, defy the odds of what is possible, and change people’s perceptions of where the limit of performance lies. Running has ultra trail running, car racing has Paris-Dakar, and the world of sailing has offshore maxi yachts.

Designed for both speed and endurance, maxi yachts are the WRC Rally cars of the seas, navigating the most remote waters and enduring some of the harshest conditions with remarkable precision, agility, and speed.

In this article, we delve into the world of the offshore mini -maxi  entered the Noakes Sydney Gold Coast, exploring the cutting-edge advancements that set them apart, the intense competitions that showcase their capabilities, and the passionate community that drives this exhilarating sport forward.

Whisper, a Judel/Vrolijk 62 racing yacht built by Green Marine, is always a top contender in the CYCA Audi Centre Sydney Blue Water Pointscore and other racing series. Owned by CYCA Director David Griffith, Whisper is known for its elegance and cutting-edge technology. The yacht has achieved remarkable success, including claiming honours in the Mini Maxi Division during the 2021 Income Asset Management Australian Maxi Championship and placing 3rd in Line Honours in the 2023 Noakes Sydney Gold Coast Yacht Race. Whisper also holds the race record for the CYCA Montague Island Race, showcasing its superior design and performance.

In the past Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race, the crew showed its grit and perseverance by pushing the boat hard through unfavourable conditions. While the team did not achieve the result in December that they were aiming for, since that moment all eyes have been on the start of the new racing season. The team is led by navigator Clare Costanzo , who will be taking on her first long offshore race with Whisper and is armed to support the team to place well.

A new addition to the yacht is a whale pinger, a new technology that emits sound to help navigate a safe course and avoid marine mammals. This pinger is mounted at the end of the bulb and is used by around 300 boats in Europe, including got 18 IMOCAs, highlighting its growing adoption in the sailing community.

The race is known for its tricky conditions, often requiring crews to stay close to shore to avoid strong currents. The unpredictable weather patterns add to the challenge, with competitors needing to navigate potential shutdowns and drifting scenarios.

Whisper's crew is no stranger to these conditions, having participated in the race numerous times. While Line Honours might be out of reach, Whisper's focus is on performing well on handicap, aiming to keep pace with the larger boats and avoid being left behind. The race's unpredictable nature, with potential for various weather scenarios including east coast lows and southerlies, means Whisper must be prepared for anything.

The boat is configured for versatility, allowing last-minute adjustments to the sail pack and crew to fine-tune their strategy in the final week before the race.