Island Cruising acquires Down Under Rally

ICNZ Rally participants

Island Cruising NZ has acquired Australian yacht rally organiser Down Under Rally from its founder, John Hembrow.

The Down Under Rally was founded in 2015. Since then, John Hembrow, with the assistance of his wife, Leanne Hembrow, has run a variety of yacht rallies and events within Australia and the South Pacific.

Down Under Rally’s Go West Rally encourages international cruisers to sail to Australia from the South Pacific and spend cyclone season enjoying Australian hospitality while cruising the East Coast of Australia. Most Go West Rally participants also take this opportunity to carry out maintenance to their vessels in readiness for their onward voyages into Asia and beyond.

Island Cruising acquires Down Under rally

Down Under Rally also offers opportunities for Australian sailors to voyage to the South Pacific from Australia with the Go East Rally and NC2V Rally and, more recently, within Australia as part of the Beyond The Barrier Rally.

With the acquisition of the Down Under Rally, Island Cruising says it is poised to further enhance the connection between Australian and New Zealand cruisers and to bring some fresh ideas and energy to the rallies that both companies offer.

Unlike other rallies, Island Cruising operates a flexible model where people can sail with the group or choose their own dates and destinations.

“We are thrilled to welcome the Down Under Rally members and supporters into the Island Cruising community,” says Viki Moore, the owner of Island Cruising. “John and Leanne have done an outstanding job of creating and growing the Down Under Rally, and we are committed to building on their legacy by continuing to offer sailors unforgettable experiences in the South Pacific.”

Viki Moore

Island Cruising has been running yacht rallies for over thirty years, and Moore (pictured left) is the fifth owner of the business.

“We aim to foster ongoing relationships with the communities we visit, educating sailors on how to be culturally sensitive and being aware of and reducing the impact we have on the environment,” Moore says.

John Hembrow adds: “The future for me personally is uncertain at this time, but I can say with certainty that creating and running the Down Under Rally has been the most personally rewarding experience of my career. I am very proud of the achievements of the Down Under Rally over the past few years.

“This is a positive step forward for both businesses, and I look forward to seeing the Down Under Rally flourish under Viki Moore’s leadership.”

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