AC007, ANDOO COMANCHE, Sail No: CAY007, Owner: , Skipper: John Winning Jr, State: NSW, Design: VPLP 100, LOA: 30,5
Andoo Comanche wins Line Honours in 2022 Rolex Sydney Hobart
The 100-ft maxi, skippered by John Winning Jr, crossed the line in 1 day, 11 hours, 56 minutes and 48 seconds.
This is a fourth Line Honours win for the boat, a Verdier/VPLP design, under a third different owner.
She first won as Comanche in 2015 for Jim and Kristy Clark.
The 2017 Line Honours win as LDV Comanche, when owned by Jim Cooney and Samantha Grant, was achieved in a time of 1 day, 9 hours, 15 minutes and 24 seconds, which still stands as the race record.
Cooney and Grant also won Line Honours with Comanche in the 75th anniversary race in 2019.
Winning said: "We've got the boat. We will be coming back for sure. We're not trying to come second. We're here to win every race that we do.
"This boat doesn't deserve to come second; certainly not when it's in its prime. Until the foiling boats outdate this boat she should always be going out there trying to win Line Honours."
However, for now, Winning Jr and his crew will continue to celebrate their success in this year's race, secured when they crossed the finish line at 12:56.48am today.
Their winning time of 1 day 11 hours 56 minutes 48 seconds was just outside the race record for the 628 nautical mile race.
But their victory was nonetheless an impressive one in the fast downwind conditions which were created by the north-north easterly winds that prevailed for their entire journey south.
Second to finish at 1:23.19am was Christian Beck's LawConnect in 1 day 12 hours 23 minutes 19 seconds.
Third at 1:40.34am was Peter Harburg's Black Jack, skippered by Mark Bradford. The Oatley Family's Hamilton Island Wild Oats, skippered by Mark Richards, crossed at 2:38.13am
Both Andoo Comanche and LawConnect also finished with their protest flags no longer up.
For Winning Jr, who was aboard Perpetual Loyal for her victory in 2016, it was a special result. It was his first as skipper - and his father, John 'Woody' Winning – was also aboard.
"The moments are still sinking in," Winning Jr said. "It just didn't feel real until the last minute.
"Once it started sinking in, I just started thinking about who went into making it all possible."
Andoo Comanche's win added another chapter to its history. It was its fourth Line Honours win after 2015, 2017 (record that still holds) and 2019. It is also the first boat to win under three different owners.
American Jim Clark and his Australian wife, Kristy Hinze Clark, were the original owners of the yacht designed by Verdier Yacht Design and VPLP. They launched Comanche in 2015 and took Line Honours in the Rolex Sydney Hobart that year.
The Clarks sold the boat to Jim Cooney and his wife Samantha Grant, who renamed the yacht LDV Comanche and took Line Honours and the race record of 1 day 9 hours 15 minutes 24 seconds in 2017, returning as Comanche in 2019, to take Line Honours again.
LawConnect's owner, Christian Beck, was more than happy about finishing second behind Andoo Comanche, especially in conditions that did not suit his boat.
"We thought we were going to come fourth in these conditions, so second was beyond our expectations," said Beck, for whom it was his fifth campaign on the boat.
"I'm very proud of it. The boat's not that good, but the crew is awesome. For us to be half an hour behind Comanche and ahead of Wild Oats and Black Jack is incredibly good for us."
Black Jack skipper Mark Bradford said this Rolex Sydney Hobart might be the last for Peter Harburg's yacht, which won Line Honours last year.
"We're going to head to Europe next year," he said. "We're going to go where the winds are light. We're getting out of here!"
As for this year's race, Bradford said: "It was a totally different race to last year, just an easy downwind race. No real dramas. Everyone should get here safely and yet have a great race.
"It was always going to be a close race, this race. Halfway through, Comanche had a pretty healthy lead and then towards the end, it came back into sort of 12 miles or so to us and six to LawConnect. I think that's probably a fair result for everyone, really, to be honest.
"Comanche is a great boat with a great crew. They sail it well, obviously; but to be 12 miles behind after 628 nautical miles in what is their conditions? We're pretty happy with that."