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Beau Geste in Hobart mix despite damage

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 27/12/2016

Sydney to Hobart contender Beau Geste has reported a calm welcome from the sometimes-treacherous Bass Strait.

While the retirement of supermaxi Wild Oats XI captured the headlines on Tuesday, the 24.4m New Zealand entry made good time heading south and was fifth in line honour standings by midday (AEDT).

"We came into Bass Strait this morning and it was beautiful - dolphins around the boat and no water over the deck. Not what Bass Strait is normally like for the fleet," Beau Geste tactician Gavin Brady reported by satellite phone.

It came as a welcome reprieve for the crew of 17 who battled some rough conditions overnight which resulted in a torn spinnaker and almost four hours of on-the-run repairs.

"The tear cost us through the breeze transition. We probably spent three to four hours recovering," Brady said.

Sticking with the lead pack in the Sydney to Hobart, contender Beau Geste has reported favourable conditions through Bass Strait. © Peter Parks/AFP/Getty Images Sticking with the lead pack in the Sydney to Hobart, contender Beau Geste has reported favourable conditions through Bass Strait. Despite the damage, the conditions allowed Beau Geste to keep pace with the leaders down the NSW south coast.

Crew member and well-known cook book author Donna Hay even emerged from the galley as it was all hands on deck.

"Last night it was pretty rough and no one got a lot of sleep," Brady said.

Beau Geste is sticking with the lead group which is entering Tasmanian waters with supermaxi Perpetual LOYAL powering ahead and on track for a race record time.

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