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Dr Gavin LeSueur

Gavin LeSueur built his first multihull, a 16ft Mosquito catamaran, while at high school. After graduating from Melbourne University in Medicine, he purchased and moved aboard a 35' Hedley Nicol 'Wanderer' trimaran.

To learn as much about multihull sailing he decided to compete in the two-handed Bicentennial Around Australia Yacht Race. For this adventure he attained the then fastest offshore racing catamaran in Australia - a 37ft Crowther Super Shockwave named D Flawless.

As preparation he raced D Flawless in many Southern Ocean races and eventually to New Zealand in the Two-handed Trans Tasman Challenge. During this 1000 nautical mile race D Flawless, LeSueur and his 21 year old crew Catherine Reed, survived a hammering from Cyclone Bola, sailing though the eye to complete the race and gain the 'best competitors' trophy.

En route back to Australia two months later D Flawless struck a whale while surfing downwind at night. The subsequent liferaft story, and his earlier adventures at sea and on land are detailed in LeSueur's first book 'Windswept'.

Within days of rescue Gavin and Catherine were fortunate enough to be offered the use of another catamaran, a Crowther 40ft shorthanded racer named 'John West'. Aboard John West, Gavin and Catherine competed in the two-handed Around Australia Yacht Race. This marathon, hailed as the toughest coastal race in the world, encompassed more than eight thousand miles of hazards.

Swirling tidal currents around tropical reefs in blistering conditions contrasted further down the track with sleet, snow and blinding storms in the notorious roaring forties of the Southern Ocean. Gavin's story of the Around Australia Race and the drama behind the multihulls that both capsized and survived, is told in his second book, 'The Line'.

Since the Around Australia Race, Gavin LeSueur has continued the multihull experience. He continued to race and cruise 'John West' (re-named 'Windswept') for seven years. After this he lived aboard 'Magic Happens' (12m Hitchiker Catamaran) and cruised the South Pacific with his growing family.

After returning to Australia the Le Sueur family upgraded to a 14m Catana Catamaran 'Chaotic Harmony' and returned to the Pacific for three years. Back in Australia they raced 'Chaotic Harmony' and saw the enthusiasm in their children.

After selling the Catana they bought 'Top Gun' (15m Crowther racing catamaran) in the Philippines, sailing her home two handing with the plan to campaign her with the eventual goal of racing around Australia.

On a personal level, LeSueur was once told that if he ever found the perfect crew he should marry them. He did, and now Catherine and their three children (Estelle, Baden and Fletcher) live the multihull lifestyle.

When not campainging Top Gun (aka eDoc.net) LeSueur races an off the beach catamaran and kitesurfs for exercise. He takes every opportunity to sail aboard the many catamarans and trimarans in North Queensland and his experience ranges from crusing on the latest trailertri to Three Peaks racing on large offshore cataramans.

A blog of their family adventures can be found at www.multihullbooks.com/news/ and Estelle's at www.sailorestelle.blogspot.com

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The LeSeur family

Estelle, Baden, Catherine, Gavin
and Fletcher (front)

'Chaotic Harmony'

'eDoc.net' at 2011 Hamilton Island Race Week

'eDoc.net'
2011 Hamilton Island Race Week

 

 


Another oz-e.com.au website 2003