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The show must go on! - Australian newsletter

by Peter Rendle 16 Apr 14:00 PDT
The Royal Geelong Yacht Club during the Festival of Sails © Salty Dingo

This week's newsletter borrows a saying from the entertainment industry that is used when overcoming all kinds of disasters. With the Covid-19 pandemic showing a distinct flattening of the curve, the government is suggesting that current restrictions could be eased over the next month or two if certain statistics continue to indicate a positive downturn in infections.

In the mean-time the Australian Boating Industry Association has forwarded confirmation from Transport for NSW Maritime that under current COVID-19 restrictions in NSW the following applies:

  • A person can pick up a boat from a dealer, broker or person that they have purchased it from and tow it home as it is considered a reasonable excuse under obtaining goods and services as is taking it to a dealer or broker to offer it for sale.

  • A person can drive to a dealership or retail store to pick up boat equipment under the obtaining goods and services excuse.

  • A person can access their vessel at a marina or on a mooring to check on systems and to make sure it is safe and compliant in line with undertaking legal obligations, likewise a person can take their vessel (by water or road) to a marina or boat shed for repairs or service under obtaining goods and services and likewise return it home or to its mooring or marina.

The update provides some clarity to both business and public, especially as there have been cases of Police intercepting people and issuing warnings that their travel is unlawful, while travelling by water to boat yards for service, maintenance or repair. The BIA state they will continue to work with governments to support boating wherever possible.

At Sail-World HQ we continue to look at ways we can assist the industry via use of online interviews between prominent industry members and Sail-World Managing Editor, Mark Jardine. In this week's newsletter, Mark interviews Carl Crafoord, veteran sailor of 31 Sydney-Hobarts and the MD of Sail Exchange that he runs with his wife Bettina. Carl talks about his introduction to sailing and how he came to set up his current business model. Well worth watching and one of a series of interviews that will enable companies to share how they are dealing with the current business conditions and their plans for the future.

Meanwhile new boats both power and sail continue to be launched. This week Dufour announced their new 61 and the specs and pictures can be viewed here.

Powerboat launchings include the Classic 40 from Whitehaven Yachts. As a bespoke builder, Whitehaven Motor Yachts has shown its commitment to customising their whole range to a client's requirements by launching the second Harbour Classic 40 complete with important changes. Whilst maintaining the characteristic styling associated with the original Harbour Classic 40, the second hull is powered by Volvo Penta IPS drives with two D4 engines. Additionally, the day boat has superior close quarters manoeuvrability with a joystick control mounted in the helm.

Arriving in Australia later in the year, the two-cabin version of the Island Gypsy Newport is in build, on track for August 2020 and ideal for cruising families looking for an economical and feature-filled motor yacht. "After more than 30 years in the boating business, we have analysed the servicing cost of boats," said Brett Flanagan, Director at Island Gypsy. "Boating should be low maintenance and pleasurable. With Island Gypsy, we have sought to minimise the cost of ownership and make boating a breeze."

One major Australian Importer, Multihull Solutions, is offering cruising advice to owners and potential owners. They have listed five features to help choose your cruising catamaran. Written by Suellen Tomkins, owner of FP Helia 44 Wild Heart. If you are a monohull sailor, or even a new sailor, considering a move to a multihull, you are not alone. With catamarans offering spacious, comfortable living areas, modern design and stable sailing, it's no wonder their popularity surged as a cruising option.

Our reader numbers across all our websites have significantly increased since the global lockdowns were implemented. Despite the lack of event participation, Sail-World increased its global reader numbers by a massive 75,054 unique visitors during March this year with a total of 210,691 visitors (against 135,637 for the same period in 2019). Clearly, we are providing the right mix of relevant news to our readers and maintaining exposure levels for our advertisers, who we thank for their support through these unprecedented times. Keep sending us your industry news for posting to this website.

Stay safe,
Peter Rendle

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