Black Jack skipper creates history with win
It really was history for Black Jack skipper Mark Bradford, who took the yacht to line honours victory in the Brisbane to Gladstone yacht Race this morning.
Before today, no skipper had won four consecutive line honours.
"The biggest challenge in a short race like this is keeping the crew all friends until the end," Bradford said.
Mayor Matt Burnett said it was a fantastic race and the live streaming had been great.
He encouraged people to come down to Yachties for their party on Sunday.
EARLIER: Saturday, 10.50am
Black Jack have taken the line honous for the fourth consecutive year in the Brisbane to Gladstone Yacht Race.
The team crossed the line at 09:56:43.
They are hoping to create history by becoming the first team to the trifecta of three consecutive years of line and overall honours in the iconic race.
The overall title won't be decided until all yachts have crossed the line.
Earlier Saturday, 8:05am
BLACK JACK is poised to cross the finish line in the 69th Brisbane to Gladstone yacht race this morning.
The Brisbane to Gladstone Yacht Tracker currently has the yacht heading past Turkey Beach on its way into Gladstone Harbour and is expected to arrive by 9:30am.
Barring any unforeseen circumstances, the 70-footer is on course to create race history by becoming the first yacht to win three consecutive years of both line honours and overall.
It will break a 58-year record.
Gladstone entrants Restless and Wistari are situated towards the back end of the main chasing fleet and are tracking towards the northern tip of Fraser Island.
The best vantage points to witness Black Jack create history will be at the Auckland Pt lookout, East Shores and Spinnaker Park.
Port Curtis Sailing Club will open its doors to the public at 10am.
Further updates to follow...
BLACK JACK is on track to create Brisbane to Gladstone history as it leads the field for both line honours and overall positions.
The Volvo 70 yacht is chasing its third consecutive line honours and overall double, which will see her break a 58 year record set by Solo in 1958-59.
Black Jack is currently halfway up the coastline of Fraser Island and leads second-placed Alive by 17 nautical miles.
It is currently traveling at 17.2 knots with Alive tracking at 14.2 knots.
Ichi Ban sits in third place with Hollywood Boulevard fourth and Kerumba fifth.
Gladstone yachts Wistari and Restless are positioned in the main chasing pack and are expected to pass Noosa Heads within the hour.
The Brisbane to Gladstone Yacht Tracker has Black Jack's time of arrival in Gladstone Harbour set at 11:27am Saturday.
However this time could change depending on weather conditions.
The remainder of the fleet are expected to arrive in Gladstone waters over the course of the Easter weekend.
More to follow...
RACE favourite Black Jack has opened a lead of approximately 2km in the 69th Brisbane to Gladstone yacht race.
Skipper Mark Bradford currently has the 70-foot yacht halfway up the coast of Bribie Island as they head towards Caloundra and beyond.
Wind conditions have been light, ranging between 10 to 15 knots, but are expected to increase to 20 knots as the fleet moves further north.
Black Jack's main threat, Alive is currently in second place with little separating Ichi Ban and Hollywood Boulevard for third place.
Gladstone entrants Restless (John Ibell) and Wistari (Scott Patrick) are towards the back end of the main chasing fleet and are yet to reach the Bribie Island coast.
The Black Jack Yachting crew are attempting to achieve the historic title of being the only yacht to achieve the trifecta of winning three years in a row in both line honours and overall.
Current Top 5
1. Black Jack
3. Ichi Ban
4. Hollywood Boulevard
5. Mr Kite
THE 69th annual Brisbane to Gladstone yacht race has begun with an 11am shotgun start.
Race favourite Black Jack started well and leads the fleet as they head towards the Redcliffe peninsula.
Gladstone entrant Wistari made a solid start and kept up with the early pace before settling down with the main pack of yachts.
Fellow Gladstone entrant Restless also sits in the chasing pack.
The wind has dropped off with yacht speed ranging between five to 10 knots.
Current Top 3
1. Black Jack
3. Ichi Ban