PORT2PORT organiser Lesley Grimminck says the rally will go ahead despite the tsunami.
PORT2PORT organiser Lesley Grimminck says the rally will go ahead despite the tsunami.

Port2Port not struck down

About 50 boats docked in Vanuatu in preparation for this month’s rally to Bundaberg were given a scare yesterday morning when an earthquake struck in the Pacific Ocean.

Residents of Vanuatu were put on alert by the Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre when the powerful quake struck but it was Samoa that received the worst of the damage.

PORT2PORT organiser Lesley Grimminck said she had spoken to sailers in Vanuatu yesterday.

"There is nothing they can do, they are already in Vanuatu, they have just taken precautionary measures," she said.

"There is no way this will affect the rally, they will be coming to Bundaberg."

The 50 yachts belonging to sailors from 10 different countries have been docked at Port Villa and Luganville in Vanuatu in anticipation for the Port2Port rally.

The first of the boats will depart on October 17 to arrive at Bundaberg by October 26.

This year will mark 10 rallies from Vanuatu to Bundaberg.

And Grimminck said international interest in the event had grown since last year.

But the event must keep yacht numbers below 50 because of a lack of space at the Burnett Heads Marina.

"If we had more booths in Bundaberg we would be able to bring a lot more people into the town," Grimminck said.

Grimminck said the event was an international promotion for the Port of Bundaberg.

"For people from Vanuatu, Bundaberg is the first port of call when they come to Australia," she said.

"But more of these people have not been here before."

The yachts will travel more than 1000 nautical miles to reach their destination.

When the yachts arrive in Bundaberg there will be an open day at the port.

At the open day dragon boats will race on the water and Volunteer Marine Rescue will do presentations on water safety.



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