The Yachts

Komatsu Azzurro

Komatsu Azzurro


Azzurro was raced with extreme success in the mid 80s and early 90s by Ron White and his family out of Sandringham Yacht Club, when the boat was called Shenandoah 11.  Among their numerous successes was a divisional win in the 1994 Sydney Hobart with a faster finishing time than the winners of the 2 divisions above them.

Veteran Sydney based sailor, Shane Kearns came across her in Queensland in early 2014, unearthing a jewel in an idle and sadly unloved state.  To say she had seen better days was an understatement.  However, Kearns was unable to dismiss the classic and evocative Olin Stephens lines, bought the boat on his credit card for $23K and kicked off a major resurrection project, restoring pride and respect to this feisty little S&S 34.

Add a great crew from the late John Walkers Petersen 34 Impeccable and this boat was ready to go hard!  With the restoration still underway the day before the 2014 S2HYR, she made a spectacular debut finishing 3rd in her division and setting a new S2HYR S&S 34 race record of under four days for the race.  In July 2015, Azzurro continued to improve and impress by winning the Sydney to Gold Coast Yacht Race in both IRC and ORCI overall.  Azzurro had a great race in the 2015 Rolex Sydney Hobart, finishing 3rd overall in IRC and winning both ORCI overall and the Corinthian division.

In 2016, now sponsored by multinational mining machinery company KOMATSU Australia, Komatsu Azzurro won both her IRC and ORCI divisions in the slowest Sydney Gold Coast Yacht Race in memory.  Azzurro had a great race in Perpetual Loyal's record breaking 2016 Rolex Sydney Hobart, finishing 3rd overall IRC and 6th overall ORCI. and 3rd Corinthian division, as well as 2nd in her IRC division and 1st in her ORCI division.  Azzurro completed the 628 mile course in 3 days 15 hours, beating several much bigger boats across the finish line and again lowering the S & S 34 race time to Hobart.  In her first race of 2017, Komatsu Azzurro again won the Sydney Gold Coast Yacht Race placing 1st in both IRC and ORCI overall.

Now for the 2018 Noumea and Groupama races, where Komatsu Azzurro will continue to be the little boat that could!


Competitor Details

Yacht Name Komatsu Azzurro
Sail Number 3430
Owner Shane Kearns
Navigator Duncan McRae
Crew A Sims, J Nixon, M Doherty, R Holstein
State NSW
Type S & S 34
Designer Olin Stephens
Builder Swarbrick Bros
Construction GRP
LOA 10.4
Beam 3.1
Draft 1.9