(Australian Associated Press)
Australian model Kristy Hinze-Clark was terrified at times during her maiden Sydney to Hobart race aboard come-from-behind line honours winner Comanche.
The 36-year-old, who co-owns the 100-foot supermaxi with billionaire American husband Jim Clark, steered the boat across the finish line on Monday night and later described the 628-nautical mile trek.
“There was a bunch of emotions that went on: pure terror at one stage, excitement and now just total joy and fulfilment,” Hinze-Clark told reporters.
“It’s one of the best things I’ve ever done.”
Her fear peaked on the first night when the boat sustained damage.
“I was scared at one point: we lost a dagger board, I’m not sure how – we might have hit something – but it kind of tore through our rudder and that sound was terrifying,” she said.
Hinze-Clark turned to skipper Ken Read for reassurance that everything was okay.
Read said the race debutante stepped up and contributed during the race – spending time at the wheel and also on the grinders.
“They kept an eye on me and made sure I was okay every step of the way,” Hinze-Clark said of the Comanche crew.
Before suffering damage on Saturday night the boat responded well, leaving Sydney in impressive form, the 36-year-old said.
“It was amazing, a great start … the boat performed exactly how we expected, it took off like a rocket.”
Despite her husband’s protestations before the race that it would cost too much time and money to bring Comanche back to Australia for another Sydney to Hobart campaign, Hinze-Clark has other ideas.
“It’s not going to be the last time she’s here … not if I’ve got anything to do with it,” she said of the supermaxi built to break records.
But first the boat needs some major repair work, or as her model owner put it: “She needs a facial”.