30th Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show | Mark Rothfield

BIG REVEAL: Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show will host the world premiere of the Hudson Bay 540 Sedan.
BIG REVEAL: Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show will host the world premiere of the Hudson Bay 540 Sedan.

EXCITEMENT surrounds next month’s 30th Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show (SCIBS), and it’s not just among buyers. Exhibitors are prepping some serious new releases to mark the milestone.

STYLIN' IT: Clipper will also display six boats from Cobalt, including the Cobalt A28.

STYLIN' IT: Clipper will also display six boats from Cobalt, including the Cobalt A28.

A gamut of new-generation trawler vessels will be in full force at the show, held from May 24 to 27, with organisers confirming the largest display in years.

There’s Clipper Motor Yachts, Grand Banks, Flagstaff Marine displaying the Beneteau Swift Trawler, Fleming Yachts, Integrity Motor Yachts and Leigh-Smith Yachts with their Alaska brand, to name a handful.

SCIBS exhibition manager Dominic O’Brien said the trawler-style vessel – being sturdy, full form and laden with features – is surging in popularity as family-friendly coastal cruisers and liveaboard long-range passage-makers.

“There is a real demand for trawler-style motor yachts thanks to their ‘go-anywhere’ capabilities, and there will be a huge variety of these modern classics on display this year,” O’Brien said.

Clipper Motor Yachts, which celebrated its 40th anniversary last year, is launching a European-inspired model range as its foray into the international long-range cruiser sector.

It apparently follows months of research, focus groups, discussions with current and prospective owners and design workshops held in Australia, Asia and the US, which showed that today’s buyers want to venture further afield without compromising luxury.  

Clipper managing director Brett Thurley says it’s the start of a new era.

“Our heritage is in traditional, solid, trawler-style cruisers and we have now taken that style of vessel to a completely new level of design and finish … it’s a massive change in aesthetic direction for the future,” he said.

There’s been no compromise to core elements of Clipper’s DNA, such as walk-around decks, semi-displacement hull design with keel protection and economical shaft-drive diesel technology.

Thurley added that SCIBS would have the world premiere of the Hudson Bay 540 Sedan, 470 Sedan and 390, valued at $1.6 million, $1.2 million and $600,000 respectively. Two 54-footers and a 390 have already been sold and, all up, there are 12 of the newly designed vessels in build.

It comes after Clipper gave the Patrizio Facheris studio in Florida free rein to modernise the fleet. Facheris, renowned for his work in international superyachts, will attend SCIBS for the world launch.

The jewel in the Clipper’s show crown will be a range of new Cordova Motor Yachts including the 50MY, 55MY and 65MY. These vessels are long-range displacement cruisers designed to tackle virtually any sea conditions.

Design-wise they’re more in keeping with the company’s past values, but have been restyled to hold their own in any company on the international stage.

Thurley’s company also imports Cobalt from the US and is displaying six boats, including the Cobalt A28, the Cobalt R30 and Cobalt CS 23 which are having their world premieres. See sanctuarycoveboatshow.com.au


WITH its fleet of one-design keelboats, Newcastle Cruising Yacht Club is aiming to create similar training and competition opportunities as the larger Sydney clubs. 

Their inaugural Newcastle Youth Keelboat Championship will feature yacht club teams of 4-5 young sailors competing in a round-robin fleet racing event, with the top six contesting the finals.

“We have a team coming from Great Lakes Sailing Club and we are expecting further entries from Port Hunter Sailing Club and the Belmont 16ft Sailing Club,” academy manager Jacqui Ellis said.

The regatta dates are April 28-29, with race documents available at ncyc.net.au under Sailing Academy.


THE Women Who Sail Australia group are staging their third consecutive Gathering on the Bay from today as an entrée to Sail Port Stephens. It’s a chance for women sailors, and those interested in becoming one, to meet, network, share knowledge and learn.

Organiser Shelley Wright is expecting attendees from overseas and interstate, as well as locally.

An outstanding speaker list has been assembled, highlighted by Lisa Blair who completed a 183-day circumnavigation of Antarctica aboard her yacht Climate Action Now – formerly Newcastle’s Funnelweb.

It’s probably not too late to book online through stickytickets.com.au. Alternatively, the email address is womenwhosailaustralia@gmail.com