Mister Lucky was named after the John Lee Hooker song (They call me Mr Lucky/Bad luck don’t follow me/Everything I touches turn to gold/That mean I can’t do no wrong). Perhaps the lyrics ring true in this case! A member of Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron and Solo Ocean Racing Club UK, Mark Hipgrave started sailing at RBYC in Sabots when the age of 11. He later moved into Cadet Dinghys and in 1972 ocean racing when he competed in his first Sydney to Hobart race.
In 2014 Mark entered the 1,300nm Solo Trans-Tasman race (from New Plymouth, NZ to Mooloolaba, Australia) on the recommendation of a previous competitor. He enjoyed the experience so much he decided to seek out other long distance solo opportunities. After a reconnaissance mission to the 2015 Southampton Boat Show he ordered his Jeanneau Sun Fast 3600 with the intention of competing in the 2016 season of the Solent based Solo Offshore Racing Club, and in particular, SORC’s inaugural Solo Round the [Fastnet] Rock race. This race qualified him and Mister Lucky for the even bigger challenge of the 2017 OSTAR race where he successfully finished third in the Gipsy Moth Class. Mark has also achieved a 1st place in the IRC Division 1 in the Yachting Monthly Triangle Race 2016 and 3rd Place in IRC Division 1 Solo Fastnet Race 2016.
The boat has undergone back up and safety systems upgrades for the 2017 OSTAR and Osaka Cup 2018, including a second autopilot, Watt & Sea hydro generator, de-sal unit and fibreglass spray dodger.
Co-skipper Rohan Wood started sailing at the Townsville Yacht Club where he competed in his first off shore race, the Coral Sea Classic, in his 20’s. He later moved to Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron where he is well recognized as a highly competent and competitive yachtsman. In 2017 Rohan will compete in his 5th Sydney to Hobart race and is looking forward to competing in the “ultimate” adventure – the Osaka Cup 2018.
Rohan has competed in many other off shore races with the Osaka Cup being his first long distance short handed race. Rohan enjoys a well rounded skill set and competent boat handling skills in a variety of conditions. He and Mark have sailed in many off shore races together and their combined complementary skill set has identified them as an exciting crew combination within the 3600’s fleet. Rohan has followed Mark’s short handed adventures around the world with great admiration and jumped at the chance to join him for the Osaka Cup 2018.