Gladstone Multihull Race Record Cast In Stone

Ian Grant (April 12, 2004)

Martyn Riley a Melbourne Orthodontist spectacularly claimed a place in Australian offshore sailing history over the Easter weekend by helming his power sailing catamaran Raw Nerve to an impressive record breaking win in the 308 n/ml Brisbane to Gladstone race.

This offshore event the only official Australian ocean race for multihull class yachts proved to be a showcase for the awesome speed sailing class.

Raw Nerve an 18 m catamaran built by Mal Hart of Melbourne was launched as a potential race record chaser.

Riley and crew showed this class by taking line honours in the Easter classic in 2000 but failed to set a new race time.

They returned for another crack at the race time this year and skipper Riley knew the prospects of a record challenge was on the drawing board when the favourable South East trade winds were upgraded to a strong wind warning for the official coastal forecast.

'Catamarans like Raw Nerve are not necessarily handicap race winners they are geared to challenge the clock'.

'The present record of 20-35-02 rests with Rogntudjuuu the sister design to Raw Nerve so the form guide has been proven with the design I guess the challenge for us was to take the time to the next level'. Riley said.

Raw Nerve expressed the faith of owner skipper Martyn Riley when she set a blistering pace to take the record into a new time zone.

She left the fleet to decide the minor placing’s as Riley and helming partner Stuart Bloomfield powered the speed sailing catamaran to a remarkable 18-55-09 race time finishing almost 4 hours ahead of Raider (Joel Berg) with another 36minutes 16 seconds to 2003 line honours winner Flat Chat (Garry Martin).

Raider raced by the Brisbane father and sons team of Geoff, Tim and Joel Berg turned the tables on Raw Nerve winning the race outright by 3 seconds the narrowest margin ever recorded in Gladstone Race history.

Results: Brisbane to Gladstone Multihull Yacht Race Line Honours: Raw Nerve (Martyn Riley,Vic) 18-55-09 (new race record) 1, Raider (Joel Berg.Qld) 22-16-49 2, Flat Chat (Garry Martin, NSW) 22-53-05 3. Corrected Time: Raider 22-20-34 1, Raw Nerve 22-20-37 2, Nudgee Budgie (Cliff Fraser, Qld) 22-23-02 3.

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