Stuck in Sydney ... super maxi Wild Thing. Photo: Tamara Dean
Cruising Yacht Club of Australia (CYCA) commodore Howard Piggott has dismissed Grant Wharington's criticism of Sydney to Hobart race director Tim Cox as nonsense.
Wharington's super maxi Wild Thing was excluded from the race less than three hours before Wednesday's start because his revamped boat's documentation to verify construction requirements did not comply with race regulations.
An emotional Wharington told the media on Wednesday that Cox was a serial offender at trying to get big boats out of the race.
Rolex Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race 2012 - Day 1
The Rolex Sydney to Hobart is often described as the most gruelling long ocean race in the world. The fleet starts in Sydney Harbour on Boxing Day for a 628 nautical mile journey to Tasmania. Selected images available from www.fairfaxsyndication.com. Follow us at http://twitter.com/photosSMH Photo: Brendan Esposito
He pointed out that Cox had lodged unsuccessful post-race protests against the line honours winners of the past two years.
He repeated the comments again in at least one media interview on Thursday, but Piggott refuted the imputation.
"It's just a nonsense," Piggott told AAP.
CYCA Commodore, Howard Piggott, speaks to the media on Boxing Day. Photo: Getty Images
Asked if Wharington had burnt any bridges with the CYCA with his criticism, Piggott said: "He's got a great boat there.
"Get the paperwork right, Grant, and come yachting and get your mind on the sailing."
Wharington said he would like to work with the CYCA to find a way the documentation process for the race could be more accurately enforced.
Piggott stressed he didn't think it was necessary to change the process.
"No one else has had any difficulty meeting this requirement that's causing him (Wharington) difficulty and we explained what we needed and I thought he understood and I'm always happy to talk," Piggott said.
"We want to encourage boats like Wild Thing to race with us and let's see where it goes.
"But at the present time, we think our documentation appropriate.
"I think it's inappropriate to talk semantics. It's quite clear we are not legalese here.
"We're running a sport and we want to make it work for everybody and be fair.
"They didn't get their paperwork in - everybody else got their's in on time.
"We held out to the last minute and the document didn't come in. What else we can do?"
Wharington was adamant the document he supplied had sufficient information to satisfy the organisers' requirements.
"We had this document checked by a rules' expert and he said that the wording met the requirements under the notice of race. So we were very happy with the document as it stood," Wharington told ABC TV.
Wharington confirmed Wild Thing might chase the Sydney to Hobart course record and he was waiting for an appropriate weather window in the next week or two.