Coast Regatta eventually lives up to its reputation
China Coast Regatta 2011 - Day 3
16 Oct 11: What a difference a day makes! The third and final day of Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club’s China Coast Regatta dawned sunny and still, but by 0900hrs a 030 °degree breeze had been spotted at Tai Tam Bay. A notice to competitors had been issued overnight allowing the Race Officer more flexibility in the area selected for the race start and this allowed Steve Bourne to set up the first windward/ leeward for the day just off Beaufort Island to make the most of the breeze.
An on-the-water amendment to the Sailing Instructions was also effected to allow an additional race for the IRC Racing fleet, giving them a full series and a discard to boot. Short, sharp racing was the order of the day, and after eighty minutes and three laps Jelik 2 heard the gun for Racing Division 0. The other Divisions were all set a two lap course, with EFG Bank Mandrake taking 1st in Racing Division 1, Red Kite II in Division 2, Kei Lun in the Classic Cruisers and Boadicea in HKPN.
Bourne then sent the Classic Cruiser and HKPN fleets off on their final race of the series, an islands course, before relaying the start line for the second windward/leeward of the day for the Racing Divisions to deal with a swing in wind direction to 055 °.
The ‘replacement’ race got underway in 10-14kts, with Audi ultra showing improving crew work to pull away from her peers and take line honours two minutes ahead of Jelik 2. However it was Hi Fi who took the point on corrected time, putting her in an invincible position for the overall series.
EFG Bank Mandrake had a cracking day in Racing Division 1, taking another win on corrected time while Minnie the Moocher took the gun. In a keenly contested Racing Division 2, Whiskey Jack was thrilled to get her first win of the Regatta, pushing Red Kite II into 2nd place.
The final race for all the Racing Divisions was an islands course, and Bourne took pity on the rugby fans on board the fleet by setting the shortest possible course. After sending Division 2 off first, Bourne planned to start Division 1, however a mass OCS led to a general recall – even on the restart, Ambush and Stella contrived to be over, taking some time to get back and clear the line.
By the time all the fleets were on their way, Moonblue 2 was in sight, and the Committee boat set up to shorten course at Stanley Mark for all classes, to ensure a timely finish to the weekend’s racing.
After three days of ‘mixed bag’ conditions, the competitors were left with a memory of China Coast Regatta with the sort of breeze traditionally enjoyed in October.
series results as follows:
Coast Regatta 2011- Day 2
15 Oct 11: The wind gods served up yet another day of light northerly breeze to plague the fleets off the south east of Lamma Island in Hong Kong and with less than 3 knots of northerly breeze on offer at 1025hrs this morning, the AP was raised in anticipation of the breeze filling in.
As soon as Race Officer Steve Bourne was recording a constant 6 knots, the racing got going, starting with a combined HKPN and Cruiser start, followed in order by IRC Racing Divisions 1, 2 and 3.
All fleets were on a windward/ leeward course, but the question was not ‘if’ but ‘where’ the boats should be shortened. In the event, Racing 0, 2 Cruising and HKPN were shortened after one lap and Racing 1 was allowed an extra beat to finish at the windward mark.
Even in 4 knots, Racing Division 2 managed to create some excitement with a general recall, the pin end obscured by the three identified boats. The restart required an individual recall for Vixen, Dexter II and Whiskey Jack but Vixen overcame the setback to win the race on corrected time.
Given the forecast of a softening breeze, Bourne started the HKPN and Cruising Divisions on their Islands Course, giving them the best breeze of the afternoon on a route taking in Beaufort and Po Toi Islands.
The Racing Divisions were then sent on their second windward leeward of the day however, in a repeat of Friday, the wind died at around 1400hrs, and the recorders were left with the challenge of recording finishes for a flotilla of Division 1 and 2 boats. Bourne then pulled the plug, raising the ‘N’ flag and canceling the final race of the day for the Racers.
After the evening’s redress hearing, the leaders going in to Day 3 are Neil Pryde’s Hi Fi in Racing Div 0, Marcel Liedts Electra in Racing Div 1, Anthony Root’s Red Kite II, Peter Churchouse’s Moonblue II and Wing Hung NG’s No One Else in HKPN.
China Coast Regatta 2011- Day 1
14 Oct 11: Competitors in Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club’s China Coast Regatta gathered at this morning’s start line in an overcast 14 knot easterly, which encouraged Race Officer Steve Bourne to set a 1.8nm course for the Racing 0 and 1 Divisions, and 1.4nm for Division 2.
The proceedings got underway, with Division 0 followed by 1 and 2, then the Classic Cruisers and HKPN were given a joint start for their one islands course for the day.
The windward/ leeward races at this year’s Regatta include, for the first time, a requirement to pass through the start line on the upwind leg. Introduced to ensure safety of the different paced fleets at the leeward mark, the new arrangement caught out visitor, Audi ultra, who graciously retired from Race 1 after learning of their omission of the gate.
At around mid-day, the breeze softened to 5 knots, then died almost entirely, leading to half the Racing fleet exceeding their time limits. EFG Bank Mandrake, Red Kite II and Jelik 2 took the divisional line honours, and also a win on corrected time.
The RO then went on a long search for breeze, finding 7 knots and brilliant sunshine in the Beaufort channel and setting a short islands course for the Racing Divisions. While Bourne elected to shorten Classic Cruising, HKPN and Racing 0 at Stanley Mark, and was Racing 1 and 2 were shortened at TCS 2 in order to keep them inside the time limits.
At the present time, a request for redress is scheduled to be heard after Day 2 racing, which may change the results for Racing 1 significantly, however based on provisional results going into Day 2, Jelik 2 heads up Racing 0, EFG Bank Mandrake heads up Racing 1 and Dexter II Racing 2. Classic Cruisers have Moonblue 2 at the head of the table, and No One Else is leading HKPN.
Image credits to RHKYC / Guy Nowell
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