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CANOBIE in the early period of in racing career in Hobart


Vessel Number: HV000336
Date: 1912
Vessel Dimensions: 9.95 m x 6.4 m x 2.78 m x 1.42 m, 4.04 tonnes (32.66 ft x 21 ft x 9.13 ft x 4.66 ft, 4.1 tons)
Classification:Vessels and fittings
CANOBIE, built in 1912, is one of seven original one-design yachts that raced together on the Derwent River in Hobart from 1910. It was the last of six built by renowned shipwright Charles Lucas at Battery Point, Hobart. CANOBIE is one of two that retains its original hull shape without any modification, and has enjoyed almost 100 years of yachting on the Derwent. Although commonly accepted as a class for many years, the seven yachts were not officially constituted as a formal racing class with any of the Hobart clubs and were just known locally as one-designs.
DescriptionCANOBIE and the others in the class were built to plans drawn by Wm Hand Jnr, however Tasmanian naval architect Alfred Blore modified a few points on the design which had been published in Rudder magazine 1899. Blore made changes to suit the more rigorous conditions on the Derwent. CANOBIE was launched in November 1912 for AJ Cotton. It was planked in Huon pine on spotted gum frames.

An article from the mercury, 1st November 1912 reported on its launch:


Yesterday afternoon a very pleasant little function took place at Mr. Chas. Lucas's shipyards Battery Point, when Mr. A. J. Cotton's new one-design yacht was successfully launched, and christened Canobie by Miss Cotton. The orthodox bottle of gold top, suspended by redwhite, and black ribbons, was smashed on the bows as the handsome little craft glided gracefully to her native element, accompanied by the hearty cheers and good wishes of those present. Like her five sisters who have preceded her, Canobie sits very easily on the water and was much admired. Being a one-design yacht, her dimensions are exactly similar to those of the others. She is painted white with a gold riband round the top sides and a green boot top, while her flag is of a unique design, being white, with an Australian aboriginal poising his spear. She has a small bridge deck, like the Pilgrim and the workmanship of her builder, Mr. Chas. Lucas was highly commended. Messrs Rex and Son sup- plied all the rigging and sails. There were several ladies present at the ceremony, including Mesdames Cotton Ho- garth and Gotham as well as a good many yachting enthusiasts. After the launch, Mr. Cotton invited those present into the shed, where glasses were charged with champagne, and Mr. W. F. Darling (vice-commodore R.Y.C.T.) proposed Success to the Canobie, and long life to her owner. " He said that the advent of Mr. Cotton to yachting circles in Hobart had put new heart into the other owners of one-design yachts, and he hoped that Mr. Cotton could persuade some of his Queensland friends to come here and follow his good example (Hear, hear. ) They hoped to see at least ten yachts in this popular class before long, and they were glad that Mr. Cotton had come along with the sixth. As he was an owner in the same class, he could not hope that Canobie would win all the races, but he hoped that she would be successful and felt sure that her owner would derive a great deal of pleasure both from the yacht and from the racing. (Applause).

Mr. Cotton, in acknowledging the toast explained that it was due to Mr Darling's representations as to the merits of the one-design class that he had decided to take over this yacht which Mr. E. H. Webster had ordered, because this one- design racing appealed to him as the very best way of getting an absolutely fair deal in yachting. He felt that there could be no fairer and cleaner way of carrying on yacht racing than when all the yachts were absolutely on an equality. (Applause.) However good a handicapper might be, he could not always be sure of bringing them together. He did not anticipate being very successful at first, but could assure them he would always do his best. Since his arrival, he had met many mem- bers of the Royal Yacht Club, who struck him as being really good sportsmen, and he looked forward with a great deal of pleasure to meeting them in friendly rivalry. (Applause.)

Canobie will make her debut in public on Saturday, when the opening maneuvers take place, and in addition to her flag, will carry her racing number 6 on her mainsail."

Its first success was a beauty prize for the best yacht on the Opening Day regatta for the yachting season in 1912. CANOBIE raced with the other one-design yachts before World War 1. In the 1920s CANOBIE joined with them in the newly formed A division, where the one-designs raced against larger yachts, including ALWYN (HV000226), which were developed from the one-design's proportions. The one-designs managed to pick up pennants while racing under a handicap system.

The yacht has had a number of owners including EH Webster, who was the driving force in Tasmania for the introduction of a standard or 'one design' class from the early 1900s. He had success with the smaller Derwent Class in 1929, but the Tasmanian One Design was not formally constituted until much later.

CANOBIE has raced competitively in Tasmania in mixed fleets for almost a century. Apart from a 30 year period with a Marconi or Bermudan rig CANOBIE has remained true to its original shape and layout, and along with sister yacht GANNET, both of their hulls remain unaltered. The hulls of the other five including PANDORA (HV000187) have all been raised and/or lengthened. All seven one-design yachts are still afloat.

In 2012 CANOBIE was based in WA, and had been completey restored with a major overhaul of its structure and rig, and the the rig was returned to its original gaff configuration.

Vessel Details
Cabin or superstructure material and construction:timber planked
Current status:floating
Deck layout:cabin
Deck layout:full decked
Deck material and construction:timber planked
Hull material and construction:carvelcarvel-planked
Hull material and construction:timber
Hull shape:displacement
Hull shape:monohull
Hull shape:overhanging stem
Hull shape:overhanging transom
Hull shape:round bottom
Keel/centreboard/rudder type:full keel
Keel/centreboard/rudder type:keel hung rudder
Motor propulsion:diesel
Motor propulsion:motor vesselMV
Rig type:cutter
Rig type:gaff
Sail cloth:synthetic
Spar material:iron/steel
Alternate Numbers

Vessel Registration Number: ON 153893

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