A wild ride on a yacht through Bass Strait

Fairfax photographer Dallas Kilponen was a crew member on Lahana, which came third in the 2012 Sydney to Hobart race.

Being on a 100-foot yacht in Bass Strait, surfing down 20 foot swells at 28 knots is something you don't experience everyday.

It's exhilarating.

It's also the reason yachtsmen all over the world want to compete in what is regarded as one of the toughest races in the world.

It was spectacular rounding Tasman Island in a strong south-westerly wind.

Once you've caught a glimpse of the lighthouse, know the end of the race is coming. Except at that moment we blew a jib which came crashing to the floor deck. It was one of those classic race moments when just as you think you're finished, mother nature gives you one more test.

The crew repaired the broken strop and re-hoisted the same sail at minimum loss. It exemplified great teamwork and had us back racing and across the line in third place.

Unlike the race winner, Wild Oats, Lahana is 10 years older and fully manual. It requires a vast amount of teamwork from the 23-person crew to ensure the boat performs at its best.

What Wild Oats achieved this year was truly remarkable and well deserved. To win overall is the prize that everyone wants. The crew sailed the boat well and pushed it to its limits. No-one could have anything to say other than job well done.

This story A wild ride on a yacht through Bass Strait first appeared on Brisbane Times.