Former super-model Kristy Hinze-Clark and her husband, Texan billionaire Jim Clark, are co-owners of 2015’s Sydney to Hobart yacht race winner — Comanche.
It’s a win that will go down in the sailing history, not because of its speed or its size, but because of the yacht’s owner.
Hinze-Clark is the first female co-owner of a line honours winning vessel.
She is an established sailor, and despite this being her first open-ocean race, was confident in her position on board the supermaxi.
That confidence was well-and-truly put to the test. There was no smooth sailing in this year’s race, with disastrous weather leaving Comanche more than a little battered. Hinze-Clark admitted to being terrified, but supported the team’s decision to continue the race in less-than-ideal conditions.
“I was really scared at one point,” she told The Daily Telegraph, “but I had complete confidence in Ken and the crew.” The Comanche was severely damaged at its daggerboard, which stops the vessel from tipping sideways, and at the rudder.
“They kept an eye on me and made sure I was okay every step of the way,” she said.
But don’t be fooled, “there was no babysitting involved,” said the boat’s skipper, Ken Read.
Helmsman James Spithill was equally impressed by Hinze-Clark’s efforts.”I’m sold. She is awesome,” he told The Daily Telegraph. “It is really hard to keep your energy up in something like this and she just never dropped her head. She was a pleasure to sail with.”
Those with reservations about Hinze-Clark’s yachting experience probably still think of her as “Kristy Hinze super-model”, who at the age of just 14, graced the cover of the Australian edition of one of world’s most prestigious fashion magazines, Vogue.