Remembering the 1998 Sydney to Hobart Race

I noted Solandra is currently listed for sale on

Solandra is one of four S&S34’s that took part in the 1998 Sydney to Hobart Yacht race. This race was the 54th Sydney to Hobart and its most treacherous. Of the 115 boats which started on 26 December, 71 retired and 44 yachts completed the race.

On the second day of the race, an unusually intense low pressure depression developed which resulted in un-seasonal mid-summer snow across parts of south-eastern Australia. The weather system built into an exceptionally strong storm with winds in excess of 65 knots and gusts to 80 knots. The rising storm caused the sinking of five boats; seven were abandoned and 55 sailors had to be rescued from their yachts by ships and helicopters. Six sailors died.

Solandra was dis-masted during a knock down and retired, sailing back to Eden, N.S.W. The S&S34’s in the race were.

  • T42 Solandra          Craig Vescott          S&S 34 1982      Retired Eden lost mast
  • Misty                   Brian Clague               S&S 34 1975      FINISHED last boat in fleet of 44
  • Morning Tide            A Fenwick / J Davern     S&S 34 1974      RETIRED prudent seamanship
  • Boomaroo Morse Fans   J. McIntosh              S&S 34 1971      RETIRED prudent seamanship

Misty was the only S&S34 to finish and was first in IMS division F. All these yachts are still around today.

The Coroners report report on the event contain interviews with Solandra’s skipper & crew and Misty’s skipper. They are worth a read.

VC Offshore Stand Aside (YC4882) – 1998 SHYR, 1st Mayday Photo Richard Bennett

Azzurro Mounts 2023 Sydney to Hobart Challenge

Azzurro, now under the ownership of Jack Kliner is following on in previous owner Shane Kearns’ wake and putting together an exciting crew for 2023’s Sydney to Hobart race.

Xavier Doerr, Jessica Watson, Steve Quiros, Samuel Duncan, Annie Eastgate, join Jack to take on Australia’s premier offshore race.

We look forward to updates on their performance and race schedule for the year ahead.

S&S 34’s For Sale in Australia

Here is a listing of S&S 34’s found to be for sale in Australia. See if you can grab a great yacht!!

Bloodhound is for sale in Port Stephens. Contact Dave McKeag. Email drdavidmckeag at gmail dot com

Morning Star for sale in Queensland. She has an extensive race record, Melbourne to Hobart, Melbourne to Osaka ( 2nd over the line), Brisbane to Gladstone, Surf to City. She is set up for two handed sailing, with all the good gear. Details at

Morning Bird is for sale in Melbourne. Last S&S 34 to be built in the Swarbrick Brothers shipyard, Morning Bird brings with her a pedigree of sailing history. Details at

Azzurro is for sale in Sydney. She has been maintained to impeccable standards with no expense spared by her fastidious owner and high profile ocean racing sailor Shane Kearns. She has been completely restored and fully optimised for competitive racing, evidenced by her outstanding race results including twice overall winner of the Sydney to Gold Coast Yacht Race, first in ORCi in the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race, as well as numerous divisional wins. Details at

Quixote is under offer. Details at

Swagman is for sale in Perth. She has been optimised over the years with the addition of SS 34 Mk II keel, UFO 34 spade rudder, skeg removed, taller 2 spreader rig. Swagman is quick upwind, and most importantly, one of the quickest and stable downwind S&S 34’s thanks to the larger rudder. Details at

Constellation is for sale in Perth. This brilliant S&S 34 was built in WA in 2005 using the cutting edge vacuum infusion method by Swarbrick Yachts under special license from Sparkman and Stephens, USA. Details at

Ciella For Sale. Derek has had to abort his round the world trek and Ciella is now for sale. Details to follow but she is listed under our yacht directory with photos.

Of course you can still get a new S&S 34 built to your specifications! Contact Mike Finn at Cottesloe Yachts. Ring Mike on +61 419 845336.

Happy buying!!

Huckleberry Wins 71st Bunbury & Return Ocean Race

S&S 34 Huckleberry skippered by Phil Somerville Ryan has won the 71st Bunbury & Return Ocean Race off the coast of Western Australia against a field of 10 other yachts.

Huckleberry entered in Division 2 for the 170Nm race and took first in both YAH and IRC handicaps in that division. She also won the overall race and the Siska Cup for this result. She was the only S&S 34 in the race and was pitted against many faster and highly skilled yachts including a TP42, Dirty Deeds, which took line honours. In the light conditions good tactical decisions by Phil made all the difference.

Results can be viewed here

Congratulations Phil, crew & Huckleberry!!!

Huckleberry rounding the last mark in the 71st Bunbury and Return Ocean Race.

From left – Ray, Jed, Phil, Bill & Cameron enjoy a well deserved rum post race



Commodore’s Perpetual Trophy Race. 25th March 2018

Calling All Perth Based S&S34’s

We are looking for any Perth based S&S34’s to enter in the Commodore’s Perpetual Trophy race for 2018!! The race is on 25th March. The format is that a Commodore from clubs around Perth each skipper an S&S34 in a short race. The race is held at Fremantle Sailing Club and the event commences at 12 noon.

Currently nine S&S34’s are confirmed as entered but it would be fantastic to see more of these great yachts participating.

If you would like to be included please contact Ron Kooy on