Latest News on Melbourne to Devonport 2018

Welcome to the latest news on the Melbourne to Devonport.2018.

Hampers of fresh Tasmania produce. Based on the success of the gift hampers from last year we will again be presenting every finishing boat with a selection of the best Tasmanian produce. Along with a carton of cold Coopers beer and a hot National meat pie

It is going to be a fantastic event with exciting activities both on and off the water.

Come and enjoy the new Cage lounge and Bar downstairs under the clubrooms opposite the marquee.

The committe from the MYC and the ORCV have organised a big gala night 29th December.

Join us on the lawns of the Mersey Yacht Club for fine food and drinks highlighting the wonderful local products.

We have a massive marquee and supplier tents to sample local beers, wine,ciders,coffee and food.

We have a live band playing from 8.30 until midnight Paul Wells The Collection Retro Rock Band

All are welcome with no cover charge turn up and enjoy.

Please see attached the Notice of Race (NOR) for the 2018 Bass Strait Series.

This document is worth a read and outlines the historical background of the Rudder Cup.

Australia's oldest yacht race and the 5th oldest in the world!

ORCV Melbourne to Devonport Website Link

Press Release 15 th October 2018

RCVs post-Christmas dash across Bass Strait for the historic Rudder Cup
Christmas is a busy time for Melbourne's Ocean Racing Club of Victoria and among its high profile events is the 195 nautical mile Melbourne to Devonport Race for the Rudder Cup, starting 27 December each year.

Colloquially known as the 'post-Christmas dash across the paddock' (Bass Strait), entry is now open online at the official site, where prospective competitors can also find the Notice of Race.

Quick off the blocks to enter is trio of Victorian owners: Bruce Early (Afrayed Knot), Neil Sargeant (Mersea) and John Hall (Wingara). Hall says of his 32 year-old Zeston 40, "She was built for comfort, not for speed, but she goes when it blows!"

Competitors in the Melbourne to Devonport Race, the oldest yacht race in Australia and fifth longest running in the world, are racing for the historical Rudder Cup.

"It's valued at $180,000 - it's pure silver," says ORCV's Lynne Wilton of the Rudder Cup, which was struck and donated in 1907 by Thomas Fleming Day, editor of the American magazine 'Rudder'.

Day had written to his friend, T. A. Dickson, then Commodore of the Geelong Yacht Club, suggesting a race across Bass Strait to Tasmania in order to promote the sport of yachting. The trophy, a prize for the winner, was worth 60 guineas, a fortune at the time.

The inaugural race was run from Port Phillip Heads to Low Head at the mouth of the Tamar River, a distance of 198 nautical miles. It was won by the 14.6m yawl, Thistle, skippered by Edgar Newland with a crew that included his wife and daughter.

Conditions were reported to be very rough, so much so that Mrs. Newland refused to relinquish the Rudder Cup, in her efforts to dissuade others from attempting such a dangerous race. But 110 years on, competitors continue racing across Bass Strait for the honour of winning that Cup.

This original trophy came to light again in the 1960's when it was presented by Edgar Newland's son to the then Cruising Yacht Club of Victoria (now the ORCV) and continues to be presented to the overall winner of the race.

The Melbourne to Devonport Race starts off Portsea, a pretty sea-side town approximately 60 kilometres south of Melbourne, and finishes at the entrance of the Mersey River in Devonport, on the on the north-west coast of Tasmania.

In a departure from the usual end to a yacht race, yachts proceed up the Mersey River to the marina at the Mersey Yacht Club for the final race in the Bass Strait Series - and to the much touted Mersey Yacht Club hospitality.

The record for the Category 2 race has been held by Prowler (Joe Westerlo) since 1998, in the time of 19 hours 32 minutes 56 seconds. Despite many attempts since, the record remains intact, thanks mostly to the weather. -- Di Pearson/ORCV media

For Notice of Race and to enter, go to:

NOR Final 2018 Melbourne to Devonport