Yachts endured wild weather in wartime race

Lorin CoxGeraldton Guardian
Geraldton fishing boats race on June 15, 1941.
Camera IconGeraldton fishing boats race on June 15, 1941. Credit: The Buchan family

Where the land meets the sea is barely discernible in this image taken on a wet and wild day in Geraldton during the Fishing Boats’ Race on Sunday, June 15, 1941.

It’s almost as though the yachts, Queen and Intombi, are sailing along the railway line. The photographer has managed to capture their exciting duel for third place.

The combination of rain, squall and big swell had many yachts withdrawing, leaving seven boats vying for victory.

The Geraldton Guardian reported Isobel as the winner with Wanderer taking out second place. Intombi did manage to get the better of Queen but did not make it safely to the moorings without incident, being overturned by an angry wave.

The treacherous conditions damaged many boats with Saga struggling with a broken mast and Iduna suffering from a badly torn mizzen sail and mainsail.

It was just one of many exhilarating races during Geraldton Yacht Club’s rich 106-year history.

Snapshots is an initiative of the Geraldton Regional Library.

For more information, or to donate a historical photo or slide to the Library, contact Heritage Services at the Geraldton Regional Library on 9956 6659 or library@cgg.wa.gov.au

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