Brad Allen's Story
Sailing with the SWD team has been a great opportunity and an amazing learning experience. I hope I can continue to contribute to this great cause, and get some results with the team along the way..
I started sailing at age 5 at McCrae Yacht Club on the Mornington Peninsula. My father was a yachty and he built my first boat before I could swim or sail. I learned to sail this magnificent cedar ply until I outgrew the class and advanced to Flying Ants.
From there, I competed in National and State titles across Australia and in multiple Victorian and State squads. I progressed to a skiff moth with my best result 15th and 2nd Junior in the McCrae nationals in 1992. I continued to sail mixed classes such as lightweight sharpies and 14' skiffs through the mid 90's "the uni years" until I crewed my first keel boat - a 32' Swarbrick at Sandringham YC.
A role with Channel 7 lured me to Sydney where I joined the CYCA and sailed my first overnight offshore on an Adams 13 in the 97-98 Pittwater to Coffs race. I continued to race in Victoria on a Cavalier 37 in the M2H and Melbourne to Stanley races and in the 2004 Rolex Sydney to Hobart - along with five old Flying Ants ‘the Ferals’ and three mature crew we referred to as ‘the Philistines’.
I spent the last few years sailing in MHYC races, winning 2 annual point score series on a Holland 30' named Pinta, and joining the Mortgage Choice Rumba crew for the Sydney Southport and Coffs offshore series. I was caretaker of Wave Dancer (Rob McConchie's Radford 35') and finished equal 1st in the 2009 Audi Winter Series.
I made good contacts at the CYCA and in 2009 was asked to help out SWD on "the new ride" - and a potential Hobart campaign. What a ride it is (how could I resist)?!
2013 was my fourth Sydney to Hobart after competing in 2004, retiring early in 2010 on Wot Eva (due to fuel tank failure), and completing the trek in 2012.