100TH ENTRY: New Zealand boat Bullrush is the 100th entry to this year’s Airlie Beach Race Week.
100TH ENTRY: New Zealand boat Bullrush is the 100th entry to this year’s Airlie Beach Race Week.

New Zealand boat makes a century for Airlie Race Week

NEW Zealand boat Bullrush is the 100th entry to this year's Vision Surveys 25th Airlie Beach Race Week, from August 8-15.

Janine and Anthony Robinson will be racing their Elliott 12 Bullrush in the Performance Division, which also includes the Farr 40 Bobby's Girl skippered by fellow New Zealander John Leman.

Bullrush campaign manager and crew member, Peter Stewart, expects there will be some healthy competition between those two boats.

"We should be able to match them on speed," he said.

Bullrush has been campaigned in many blue water races, the most recent being last month's ANZ Sail Fiji Auckland to Denarau, Fiji race.

Stewart said the team copped a hiding on the outward leg, but finished 10th over the line and 4th in their division.

The stopover in Australia is a calculated move for the Robinsons who have raced Bullrush at Airlie Beach in 2005 and 2008.

"It's warmer over there," Stewart joked, when asked why the team were coming back for a third time.

Once the boat arrives in Airlie Beach it will be a case of offloading the blue water race gear and handing Bullrush over to the inshore racing crew - an experienced group of New Zealanders who have successfully campaigned her in many New Zealand regattas.

After the Airlie Beach Race Week, Bullrush will go back into blue water mode and head offshore again, this time to Noumea to compete in the New Caledonia Groupama Race in October.

In the meantime, Stewart expects the boat will slip along quite nicely in the Whitsunday winds and among the very competitive Performance Racing division.


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