The first event of the 2023 Australian sailing season could not have culminated in a better result for Adelaide local Geoff Boettcher and his crew onboard TP52 Secret Men’s Business (SMB). The team are now the current IRC Australian Champions (Division 1) after a convincing win at the Port Lincoln regatta in February.
‘Doyle Sails and Secret Mens Business have had a great relationship over many years sharing the success of many Grand Prix Regattas Australia-wide. We have been fortunate in attracting the best of Local South Australian Crew since the inception of our first SMB in 1996. On this long path, the inclusion of Professional sailors to the mix has proved instrumental in our overall success.’
As IRC Champions, the crew now put their focus towards preparing for the newly formed Australian TP52 circuit, which sees, arguably one of the most competitive fleets in Australia, line up against each other in both inshore and offshore racing.
For Geoff and crew, who are not based in Sydney full-time, it is somewhat of a gruelling schedule, reliant on seamless logistics and planning to make the campaign a success. The first event will see SMB on the start line alongside eight other yachts at the Newcastle Regatta, followed closely by Port Stephens.
While SMB won’t be making an appearance in either Airlie Beach or Hamilton Island this year, the yacht will continue to rack up some long-distance road miles, with the TP52 circuit a total of 5000 km return, before returning back to Adelaide ahead of the summer sailing season later in 2023.
This is Geoff’s seventh yacht of the same Secret Mens Business moniker and undoubtedly the most high-performance. The yacht was previously named Rio, and based on the west coast of the USA before being purchased and relocated to Adelaide in 2021 by Geoff.
Doyle Sails Grand Prix expert Justin Ferris, who had already been sailing with Geoff on previous boats, was an integral part of the next part of the journey for Geoff. Justin, who was also sailing with Rio at the time, used his wealth of knowledge and expertise to confirm it was the right replacement boat for Boettcher. As a professional sailor, designer, project manager and all-round sailing professional, Justin was well placed to offer sound advice throughout the process and subsequently manage the Doyle sail programme onboard. Justin continues to design all sails for SMB and, in Geoff’s opinion, “has continued the success of this boat in Australia.”
Geoff Boettcher is a stalwart of sailing in Adelaide, a Foundation Member and past Commodore of the Cruising Yacht Club of South Australia, a current Board Member and most recently has been honoured with a Life Membership.
During his involvement with the club, he has initiated the purchase of a fleet of six Elliott 7’s and, together with a group of Club members, created the CYCSA Youth Sailing Foundation, which has attracted young & upcoming keelboat crews into various training programs.
“In April, the CYCSA will send our first regatta team to Sydney to compete in the National Sailing League Regatta. It is now my time to give back to the sport that I for many years I have enjoyed by competing in sailing in both Australia & around the world,” says Boettcher.
Geoff has also raced a total of 24 Rolex Sydney to Hobart races winning the 2010 Race in SMB3.5. He has expressed he has no ambition to chase his 25th!
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