Main photo: Crux at the start of the 2021 Rolex Sydney Hobart. Photo ROLEX / Andrea Francolini

Eligible two-handed entrants will be able to compete for the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s (CYCA) most prestigious trophies.

This will include the George Adams Tattersall Cup (awarded to the overall winner of the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race), the John H. Illingworth Challenge Cup (awarded to the Line Honours winner of the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race), the Peter Rysdyk Trophy (awarded to the overall winner of the Noakes Sydney Gold Coast Yacht Race) and the Audi Centre Sydney Blue Water Pointscore.

The decision comes after the CYCA Board adopted recommendations following receipt of a preliminary final report from the Two-Handed Special Purpose Working Group.

Over the last 11 months, the Special Purpose Working Group (SPWG) has undertaken a thorough assessment of the eligibility of two-handed yachts to challenge for the CYCA’s most prestigious trophies.

In June 2021, the SPWG was established and invited submissions from interested parties. Following this, the group conducted interviews with 69 individuals (including owners, skippers and crew of both fully-crewed and two-handed boats, rating office personnel, race office personnel, and technical experts), 61 meetings and more than 400 hours of work from the group.

The SPWG delivered the report to the CYCA Board on Wednesday 27 April 2022, unanimously recommending that:

1. Provided two-handed entrants meet all relevant criteria as required by the Notice of Race; and

  • They present a valid IRC and/or ORCi rating certificate; and
  • The output of their auto pilot required by the NOR is strictly limited to rotation only of the boat’s stern (‘aft’) rudder (s)
  • They be eligible to compete for the Club’s most prestigious trophies such as the Tattersall Cup, Illingworth Trophy, Peter Rysdyk Cup and the Blue Water Pointscore trophies.

2. Any two-handed entrants complying with all relevant criteria as required by the NOR, sailing with an unrestricted auto pilot, are only eligible and allowed to compete in the Line Honours and PHS divisions.

These recommendations were adopted by the CYCA Board and a final report will be released in due course.

The adoption of the recommendations is being advised to allow for the 2022 Noakes Sydney Gold Coast Yacht Race Notice of Race to be finalised and released in the week commencing 2 May.

CYCA Commodore Noel Cornish AM said: “I would like to thank the Two-Handed Special Purpose Working Group for the comprehensive work that has gone into producing these recommendations.

“The valued input from 69 individuals during the interview process ensured widespread representation and enabled the group to address the various issues at hand.

“The growing popularity of two-handed sailing was particularly evident in the 2021 Rolex Sydney Hobart, with almost 20 per cent of the fleet made up of two-handed crews.

“We look forward to welcoming two-handed crews from across Australia and abroad for CYCA races in 2022, including the Noakes Sydney Gold Coast, the Rolex Sydney Hobart and the Audi Centre Sydney Blue Water Pointscore races.”

Two-handed crews will compete in the Noakes Sydney Gold Coast Yacht Race for the first time in 2022, due to consecutive cancellations in 2020 and 2021.

Entries for the race will open next week, while the Notice of Race for the 2022 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race will be available in late May.