LOFT SPOTLIGHT: Doyle Sails Sydney

People are at the heart of Doyle Sails, the passion and skill of our loft network continue to be part of the driving force behind the success of our customers.

With over 40 loft locations world-wide Sydney, Australia is home to some of the best sailing in the world and one of Doyle Sails most experienced lofts. With a world-class harbour and a stunning backdrop of some of the most iconic landmarks, Sydney provides a playground for racers and cruisers alike.

Sydney Harbour – Photo credit: Michael Dunning Photography

Shane Guanaria – Owner and CEO of Doyle Sails Sydney has been a sailmaker since he was 15 years old learning the ropes from friend and colleague, Ian MacDiarmid. In 2013, Guanaria purchased MacDiarmid Sails which then became Doyle Sydney in 2015, the merging of the two companies meant Doyle Sails Sydney is now one of largest full design and production lofts in Australia.

Shane has sailing in his blood – he grew up sailing dinghy’s at yacht clubs around Sydney Harbour and representing Australia in the Laser class at the ISAF Youth Worlds, before competing in his first Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race in 2004 and has headed south 12 times since on boats ranging from Sydney 38’s right up to the 100 foot Supermaxi’s.

The 2019 Sydney to Hobart fleet set a new benchmark for Doyle Sails Sydney with 17 customers entered, 15 of which purchased new sails specifically for the race.

Shane’s most successful Hobart race came in 2013, where Darryl Hodgkinson’s Cookson 50 ‘Victoire’ secured the Tattersalls Cup, as the overall winner before also securing the overall win in the 2014 Lord Howe Island Race.

Shane is proud to be part of a number of successful crews who call Sydney home, with long-time customer Gordon Ketelbey working with Doyle Sails Sydney. Ketelbey, owns the series of Zen yachts – including a Sydney 38, before purchasing a F40 and most recently a TP52. Shane works closely with Ketelbey putting together the crew and sailing program which has seen them follow their 2019 New South Wales IRC Championship victory win with a successful start to the 2020 season. Prior to the season coming to an abrupt halt with the unusual circumstances around the COVID-19, Zen started with the win in the King of the Derwent Race, 2nd at the Australian Yachting Championships and 2nd at the Festival of Sailing Geelong Race Week.

75th Rolex Sydney Hobart 2019 Thursday 26th December © Suellen Hurling • Live Sail Die

Doyle Sails Sydney takes pride in not only developing the manufacturing side of the business, but also an eye for the design of a sail, Shane has the skills to provide a wholistic approach to sail design and build. With a really good insight into what the right sails can do for a boat and the ability to be open and honest with owners about what their needs may be, he has managed to not only gain a loyal following amongst his customers but also counts many as personal friends. Doyle Sails Sydney works closely with Justin Ferris from the Doyle Sails New Zealand on all aspects of sail design, engineering and finishing detail for Grand Prix and Racing projects.

Loft Manager Tom Hogan has been part of the team since the early days, coming on board as a sail maker with MacDiarmid Sails and continues to be an integral part of the Doyle Sydney loft, his experience manufacturing sails for both racing and cruising yachts is invaluable. Like Shane, he has grown up sailing around Sydney Harbour predominantly on the sports boat scene and completed his 1st Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race in 2018 aboard Zoe Taylor’s Cookson 12 ‘Grace O’Malley’ – who secured 1st place in Division 3 which was an amazing result.

Tom and the ‘Grace O’Malley’ crew followed this up with a Division 3 win in the 2019 Noakes Sydney Gold Coast Yacht Race along with overall victory in the Cabbage Tree Island Race and continues to be part of the team aboard Zoe and partner Chris Way’s recently purchased Cookson 50, also named ‘Grace O’Malley’, which competed in the Caribbean 600 in early 2020.

Tom’s attention to detail and the way in which he strives for perfection on each sail he builds, makes him an incredible asset to our loft and our customers.

At the centre of Doyle Sails Sydney, which gives the loft a family feel, both Shanes mother Jean and wife Jeanette work in the business. Jean has been in charge of overseeing the accounts for the business since 2007 and as an avid sailor Jean sails regularly on her and husband Ian’s Beneteau First 35.

In the administration side of the business Jean is joined by Jeanette. After leaving her corporate project management role following the birth of their second child, Jeanette takes a hands on approach to the business which includes putting together the boat shows and media content.

The Doyle Sydney loft is situated in Gladesville, 15 minutes west of the city and within close range of the three major yacht clubs on the harbour, the Doyle Sails Sydney team run weekly pick up and drop off repair services from each location. The 500 sqm facility has all modern equipment with the majority of all machinery being less than five years old and features an in house Laser cutter making Doyle Sails Sydney one of the very few full manufacturing lofts where they can control every aspect of a new sail from measurement, through to design, cutting and manufacturing ensuring a level of quality control that is very difficult to match.

Over the years, Doyle Sails Sydney has developed very good working relationships with the various trades around the waterfront to ensure that any of our customers projects run smoothly and their goals achieved.


One of the current projects for Doyle Sails Sydney is the first Beneteau 53 to be brought into Australia is for Matthew Hanning. Matt wants to use his new boat both for cruising and racing and has enlisted Shane to help him do just that. Wanting to optimise performance when racing, Shane has been involved in the design and development of a sail package that includes a Stratis Grand Prix spec upwind inventory and Structured Luff reaching sails that will do just that, which are currently underway in the Gladesville loft. Matt is another long term client who with the help of Shane purchased his first yacht, a Sydney 36 called “Supernova” 4 years ago and has successfully campaigned that with strong loft support on the local circuit.

NEO 430

Another exciting project is a new Neo 430 currently being built in Italy. Shane has been enlisted from the start of this project to work with Hall Spars in Holland and the boat designers to develop systems, optimize deck layout, develop a sail plan and work on rig configuration and modelling.

Hoping to have this yacht launched in 2020, this owner is more than excited to see his plans come to life. This boat will also feature a full Grand Prix Stratis race package with Structured Luff and Cableless technology utilized throughout. While the launch date is well down the track, the experienced owner realizes the importance of confirming the working team early to maximize the “out of the box” potential for his new boat.

Showing Doyle Sails Sydney’s diversity, experienced cruisers, Tim Beveridge and his wife came looking for a sail package that will help them sail their 53’ Amel Super Maramu 2000 around the world. With a full set of cruising sails being developed with this special trip in mind, Shane has been working closely with Tim to make sure he will be ready to set sail in January 2021. Being manufactured in Sydney, these Radial Spectra cruising sails will no doubt be ready for anything mother nature throws their way.

For more information or to contact Shane and the team at Doyle Sails Sydney, please click HERE.

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