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B2G Returns for 74th Race
SAILORS are encouraged to prepare for Australia’s second biggest ocean yacht race five months ahead of schedule, with naming right Gladstone Ports Corporation (GPC) gearing up to ensure the event is smooth sailing for its 74th anniversary.
Commodores, yachties, and stakeholders are celebrating the launch of Brisbane to Gladstone race preparations at the Gladstone Yacht Club today.
The launch signifies the beginning of a five-month planning journey before yachts set sail on a 300 nautical mile voyage in Easter 2022.
Queensland Cruising Yacht Club (QCYC) Secretary Paul McCowan said the club is getting a head start to entice more teams to the starting line.
“Five months may seem like a while away with Christmas around the corner, but it’s vital we start engaging key players, businesses, and stakeholders. We want to encourage as many competitors as we can to start thinking about entering,” Mr McCowan said.
Mr McCowan said some of the qualifying events take months to prepare for and 2022 could see the return of international competitors and the big interstate boats at the start line.
“We want skippers and crews to start getting their vessels in ship shape condition and start mobilising a competitive fleet,” he said.
“Last year, we were able to host the event during the unpredictable tides of COVID with the help of GPC, and while our race entrants weren’t as high owing to late withdrawals, we were glad to have 35 yachts start on the day,”
“Gladstone Ports Corporation’s sponsorship means an enormous amount to the club, during a time when sponsorships were sparse, the port stepped in and threw us a lifeline.”
Chief Operating Officer Craig Walker said GPC has always supported the race and is honoured to be playing a major role in such a historically important sporting event.
“As the naming right sponsor, we are excited to welcome locals and visitors to watch the race from the best seats in the port city – our Gladstone Marina, East Shores Parklands or a birds-eye view from Auckland Hill,” Mr Walker said.
“This is such an iconic annual event on the yachting calendar and the finish line continues to grow in popularity as a destination at Easter,” he said.
“Our Marina is situated at the race finish line and it has seen a significant transformation with our team at the port focusing on reviving the facility to attract new customers and put it on the map as one of Queensland’s five-star marinas,”
“As a result of the upgrades, our marina has seen a huge increase in visitation this year with occupancy up by 10 percent – we can’t wait to see what those numbers will look like next Easter.”