The Mark Richards-skippered defending champion supermaxi won a record-equaling seventh title in 54 hours and seven minutes, finishing on Saturday night, but far from its own race record set last year, ahead of Perpetual Loyal by 50 nautical miles.
Richards, having been there done that, was impressed: “The old girl, still got the legs that’s for sure and the team just did an amazing job and if is wasn’t for Bob here, none of us would be here.”
“It was a great team effort and we just sailed a great second half of the race an here we are.”
In what was a tough race, even by Sydney to Hobart standards, Oatley said he was worried his boat wouldn’t get over the line at Constitution Dock.
“(We were) worried until we got across the line today because it is such a difficult race you. You never know how it’s going to happen,” the 86-year-old said.
“We lost the lead the first night out with difficult weather conditions. Then we were happy to pick it up again and improve on it which we have done all day.”
But he’s committed Wild Oats XI to 2014: “We’ve got a great future, more wins. It’s beautiful, it’s wonderfully built.”
In the overall classification, Sydney plastic surgeon Darryl Hodgkinson’s 15m Victoire was was the appropriately named victor after arriving ninth in Hobart.
The same boat, previously Jazz, was second overall in 2010 and fourth in 2011.
Out of 94 boats, 10 were retired but safe at port.
Images via Getty