4th Koh Samui International Regatta 2005
AY Race Report 5 & Summary

Its over for the 04/05 season, bar the shouting...
After scurrying through the racing rule book and interpreting how to break a tie on corrected time and a series tie the final results show just how close the racing was after a week of variable conditions on different courses. Frank Pongs 75ft Jelik once again roared around the track in the fresh conditions but as the race progressed the breeze became patchy allowing Troy Yaws Ulumulu in hot pursuit to close the gap.

Both yachts sailed within their handicaps and despite Jelik taking line honours for the 6th time they ended up tied right down to the minutes and seconds on corrected time. By scoring the same points in today's final race Ulumulu maintains her 3 point advantage to become this years champion. Jelik stayed in 2nd place and after putting in a good performance on their first outing Toby O'Connell's newly acquired YO! ended up in 3rd place overall.

So over nine selected AY Grand Prix racing class events (Malaysia 3, Hong Kong 2, Thailand 2 plus Singapore and the Philippines with 1 a piece) held this season, Neil Pryde and his former Hi-Fidelity have become the respective 2004/05 AY Grand Prix Skipper and Yacht Champions of the year. By taking out the tri-fecta of the Raja Muda, King's Cup and the Singapore Straits which by the way is no easy feat plus 2nd place in the China Coast Regatta behind Skandia is a example of what it takes to win this prestigious award. Unfortunately Neil will not be here to get fitted with a new Armani blue blazer at tonight's presentation but a special award and champagne ceremony is being organised at the end of the Raja Muda latter this year in duty-free Langkawi.

Bill Bremner's Singapore based Sydney 36 Foxy Lady scored another 1st place today to clean sweep the IRC 2 class with 5 wins in as many days and his score sheet only blotted with a 8th on the first variable day which becomes his drop race. This yacht under a former owner and named Pla Loma actually won the inaugural Koh Samui Regatta 4 years ago. After a close tussle for the placing's John Vause's 4th place today is enough to put the Pattaya built Buzz 8 into 2nd place. The other Singaporean entry of Jonathan Mahony's Mumm 30 Happy Endings finished in 2nd today and tied on points with the Buzz 8 but had to settle for third on count back. Karl Stechmann's Princess Anna finished up in front of his fellow Aussie's competing on the four Sunsail Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 35’s who thoroughly enjoyed racing amongst themselves.

The duel between the Samui built Radical Bay 8000's in the multihull class also ended in a tie with 3x1st places and 2x2nd places. By scoring first place in today's final race 6, Pierre Forsans China House ran out the winner over Kim Thomas's Coco Blues on count back. Despite Radab Kanjanavanit's fine efforts on Cedar Swan to get in amongst the cats it just was not enough and ended with a 3rd place overall.

Summary
This event has a number of firsts that should be noted. It is the first major victory in classy company for Troy Yaw's Miri, Sarawak based team on Ulumulu and also the first win in many years for Ray Roberts on his old boat formerly called Luna Nuova. Another first for Foxy Lady and the Samui built RB8000's which are fast becoming a hard act to beat and likely to feature in the coming season. It is also the first time I can remember an exact tie on corrected time for a long time and so many series ties needed to be broken at the end of a regatta. Despite the prevailing light and variable conditions through the week allot of good sailing has been enjoyed and with all the things going on in Koh Samui how can you not have a good time here. So mark the end of May in your diary as this event is definitely not to be missed.

For more news, full results and photos goto: www.samuiregatta.com


4th Koh Samui International Regatta 2005
AY Race Report 4

Patience pays off in the long run...
Waking up to the pitter patter of rain drops and overcast windless skies was not in the tourist brochures. Arriving at the beach to look out on glassy seas and crews sitting around making polite conversation has become the order of the day. However, after 2 hours the postponement flag was lowered and by the time they scrambled to get out to the start line a good 8 to 10 knots appeared which increased to 15 during the race and makes all the waiting worthwhile.

Frank Pongs 75ft Jelik cut a fine line around the course and is a majestic sight to behold when it is all powered up to take out the daily double of 1st and fastest in today's race 5. Jelik has also been awarded the earlier race 4 after applying the correct handicap to Peter Churchouse's Moonblue 2 which relegated them to 3rd place and puts Jelik closer towards the possibility of an overall win. Troy Yaw's Ulumulu still leads the pack despite a 2nd place today and a handy points lead but will have to finish in the places in tomorrows final race to take away the Waterford crystal trophy. Toby O'Connell's 3rd place on YO! keeps them in the running for a place and the close racing is shown by 4 yachts finishing within 45 seconds of each other.

Bill Bremner's Singapore based Sydney 36 Foxy Lady added a forth win to their tally and become clear leaders of the IRC 2 Class. Bill said after the race " It takes the pressure of us coming into tomorrows final". David Pollard's Foreign Xchange stayed on the pace to score another 2nd place in as many days.

Jonathan Mahony's Mumm 30 Happy Endings ended up 3rd but as Foxy Lady would seem to have the trophy in the bag the Buzz 8, Magic Roundabout and Happy Endings are only separated by 2 points and will have to battle it out for the overall places in tomorrows final. Unfortunately for the four slower Aussie Sunsail yachts the breeze completely died out on the last lap and they could not finish.

By taking first place in todays race 5 Kim Thomas's Coco Blues moved in on the multihull class trophy for the first time. Radab Kanjanavanit's 2nd place is her best result so far on Cedar Swan to put themselves between the dueling Radical Bay 8000's. Pierre Forsans 3rd place on China House has them trailing Coco Blues by only 1 point but could put them at a significant points disadvantage coming into the final race.

For more news, full results and photos goto: www.samuiregatta.com

The Koh Samui Archipelago has over 80 islands spread over 50 sq miles of azure tropical seas. Stretching from Koh Rap in the south, via the bigger Koh Samui and Koh Phangan to the diving paradise of Koh Tao (Turtle Island) in the north and the uninhabited Ang Thong National Park group 25 miles to the east, nowhere is more than a leisurely day sail away. Away from the main cruising routes the region is just beginning to open up with Sunsail floatilla's and CoCo Sailing charter cats available to explore this tropical wonderland. Imagine beautiful white sandy beaches, fringed with swaying coconut palms, lush emerald green vegetation stretching over limestone hills and mountains where you can easily find a deserted bay to anchor for the night. Welcome to the Samui archipelago.


4th Koh Samui International Regatta 2005
AY Race Report 3

It's becoming a game of cat and mouse...
After an hour of hanging around the Tradewinds beach bar, the postponement flag on a beach cat in front was lowered which stirred the assembled rock stars and International crews from under the palm trees and out onto the water. (See photo, you may recognise some) The predicted SW trades did manage to arrive although a little late and saw the fleet away with 10 to 12 knots on a 24 nm passage race to the south of Koh Samui this time. The big yachts made quick work of the outward beat and spinnaker reach back only to get caught in a hole as they approached the finish line between the dying land breeze and emerging sea breeze. Decision time again, stay inshore or go to sea? Inshore seems to have paid off, yet again.

Toby O'Connell's YO! and Marcel Liedts Hocux Pocux 2 were a little to keen to get away and had to be recalled at the start which had a bearing on the days results. Peter Churchouse's Moonblue 2 stayed in contact with the leaders in the fresh conditions and made the best progress during the change over to record a resounding victory over the out and out racers. Frank Pongs Jelik initially streaked away only to get caught up in the hole near the finish to end up 2nd and just beating Marcel Liedts Hocux Pocux 2 by a mere 40 seconds. Troy Yaw's Ulumulu claimed 4th place and still holds the overall lead despite the juggling of places in today's race 4.

The bigger boats in IRC 2 made the best of the fresh conditions to increase their points standing over the smaller sports boats. Bill Bremner's Singapore based Sydney 36 Foxy Lady added another win to his tally making it 3 in a row and David Pollard's Foreign Xchange entered the frey with a well sailed 2nd place today. Saranya Makison kept Magic Roundabout in the running with a 3rd place and despite being 5 minutes late for the start John Vause's Buzz 8 scored 4th to be the best of the sportsboats. It was also Karl Stechmann's turn on Princess Anna to turn the tables on his fellow Aussie's competing on the four Sunsail Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 35’s.

It was Pierre Forsans chance on China House to get one back from Kim Thomas's Coco Blues who have been sharing the wins so far with their Samui built Radical Bay 8000's over their bigger counterparts. Radab Kanjanavanit's Farrier F9 Cedar Swan claimed 3rd place and would seem to be the best of the rest at this stage in proceedings.

Catching up with Ray Roberts in his make shift office under the palm trees this morning he said "Anytime is a good time sailing in paradise". After the race Frank Pong added "If you have 5 days of good sailing winds like today this regatta will rank as one of the best in the South China Sea. The heavier displacement cruisers with their air-con, microwaves and gen-sets will sparkle in the distance races amongst the limestone cliffs and pristine clear water. They will also find the sandy bottom in the beach anchorage very secure".

For more news, full results and photos goto: www.samuiregatta.com


4th Koh Samui International Regatta 2005
AY Race Report 2

Parking lots and great recoveries...
The first race today was almost a repeat of yesterdays race 1 which unfortunately turned into a drifting match. The boats that chose to go left stayed in the wind, as the ones on the right hand side struggled against the tide and a dying land breeze. When the sea breeze materialised it also favoured the left hand side yachts that managed one 1 1/2 laps before race officer David Brookes wisely shortened the course and allowed the competitors to complete the race, be it very slowly. After nearly 2 hours delay, the gradually building northerly strengthened to 8 to 10 knots and with the course relayed a short and quick race 3 followed, much to everyone's delight after a long day in the sun.

Ray Roberts and the Sarawak tribe have the pedal to the metal on Ulumulu as they scored 3 wins from 3 races despite exonerating themselves from a start line penalty in race 3. Toby O'Connell's YO! which fancy's light to medium breezes is skippered by Richard Merriweather this time has stayed up in the leading pack with a 2, 3 today to keep them on pace for for a podium place and with a little improvement possibly the 2004/05 AY Boat of the Year award. Frank Pongs Jelik really showed her pace around the track during the freshening race 3 to end up with 2nd place on handicap and elevate them to 3rd overall after two 4th places in the earlier races.

After some disappointing results in race 1 the hotshots in Class 2 have risen to the occasion. The Singaporean duo of Bill Bremner's Foxy Lady and Jonathon Mahoney's Happy Endings finished with two first places and a 2, 3 respectively to lift Foxy Lady to the top of the leader board. As most of the leading pack have recorded at least one bad result a true indication of their overall placing's will not come clear until the drop race comes into play. Hans Sommers Princess Arietta is doing the best of the Aussie's on the Sunsail Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 35’s. George Snow's reply to a question posed about when was the last time he skippered a 35 footer was "I can't remember although I used to own one many years ago. I'm also not used to seeing such low speeds on the instruments". This does not seem to deter them as they all hit the start line together and in front, showing the true competitive spirit they posses is still with them.

As expected the battle of the Radical 8000's is blossoming in the multihull class. Kim Thomas's smaller rigged Coco Blues rebounded with 2 wins over Pierre Forsans race 1 winner China House to take the overall lead in the class. Francesco Brancaccio's Farrier F24 Vivace has a slight edge over Radab Kanjanavanit bigger F9 and defending champion Cedar Swan who is trailing in 4th spot overall.

A low pressure system pushing out to the south west of Sumatra and another pulling in over northern China is expected to increase the south westerly flow over the next few days and hopefully the return of the wonderful trade winds that seem to have temporarily deserted us.

For more news, full results and photos goto: www.samuiregatta.com


4th Koh Samui International Regatta 2005
AY Race Report 1

Lullabouts and tricky windshifts...
After some consideration the committee have decided to reorganize the fleet into 2 monohull and 1 multihull class. Marcel Liedts Hocux Pocux 2 and Peter Churchouse's Moonblue 2 have joined the 4 racers to make up IRC 1 class. The 4 sports boats have been bundled in with the Aussie chartered Sunsail Jeanneau 36's and a mixture racer cruisers to make a 12 strong IRC 2 division. Seven various multihull designs make up the remaining 25 yacht fleet.

The day started with a short delay for the breeze to increase above 5 knots before Race Officer David Brookes dared to get the racing class away, on a 24nm passage race to Ko Phangan and return. As the yachts approached Ho Kong Ok, the first rounding mark the breeze became very patchy offshore and favoured the yachts who chose to sail closer to the coast. Ray Roberts on the 46ft Ulumulu made up for last years disappointment to surprisingly lead Frank Pong's larger 75ft Jelik on the long beat between the islands.

Most of the remaining yachts were left in their wake as they clawed their way from one patch of wind to another. A similar concertinaing of the fleet occurred as the racers returned to Koh Samui and the course had to be shortened due to the lottery like conditions. Jelik took line honours but as Ulumulu managed to stay within 3 minutes of them, they sailed away with the handicap honours. Twenty four minutes latter Marcel Liedts Hocux Pocux 2 finished less than a minute before Toby O'Connell's newly acquired YO! but after applying handicaps the order was reversed to 2nd and 3rd respectively with Jelik ending up 4th on the day.

Conditions were no different for the IRC 2 class. John Vause on the Pattaya built Buzz 8 also chose the advantageous inshore route to finish 26 minutes in front of the larger rival of Saranya Makison’s Jeanneau 35 Magic Roundabout which won the Top of the Gulf recently.

David Bell's Pink Pussycat claimed 3rd spot although finishing a whooping 1 1/2 hours latter, which shows just how fluky the conditions were out there. Resulting in last years sportsboat winner Jonathan Mahony's Happy Endings and Mark Horwood's Phuket 8 Image Asia Attitude 8 ranking amongst the did not finishes.

Pierre Forsans Radical Bay 8000 China House did a horizon job on their first outing in serious competition to leave Radab Kanjanavanit Farrier F9 Cedar Swan over 20 minutes behind over the line. After a bad start Kim Thomas's smaller rigged Radical Bay 8000 Coco Blues managed to pick their way through the fleet to end up 3rd but over 1 1/2 hours behind the leader.

Despite the conditions Frank Pong skipper of Jelik summed up the first days proceedings with "Even though there was a lack of wind at the end of the race it is really great to be here, instead of the Rolex Trans Atlantic Challenge on Maiden Hong Kong".

For more news, full results and photos goto: www.samuiregatta.com


4th Koh Samui International Regatta 2005
AY Pre-Regatta Report

Get ready, the South China Sea calls again...
Ever dreamed of lazing around on a tropical palm tree lined, white sandy beach with cooling crystal clear water only a stone throw away? Then Koh Samui is the perfect setting for you. For the last 4 years the islanders have played host to the Koh Samui Regatta and welcome racers from Australia, NZ, Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia along with local Thai sailors to its shores. The atmosphere is laid back island style with a week of fun filled racing action and passionate partying that makes it a prominent feature and truly unique event on the AsianYachting calendar
.

Peter Plant from the organising committee reported "It’s just the start of the SW Monsoon season and conditions are looking good as the westerlies are already coming in nicely. We should average 10-15 knots during the regatta. It’s a great time of year here, temperatures average 27-28 degrees and there is low humidity".

 

This year competition in the Racing Class will be fierce as defending champion, Sam Chan's 21.21m ULDB sled Ffree Fire is returning to take on Frank Pong's 75ft Reichel Pugh Jelik and Troy Yaw's Sarawak based custom Sydney 46 Ulumulu skippered by Aussie Ray Roberts is looking at making amends for last years defeat with Toby O'Connell's newly acquired Pacific 50 YO! rounding out a formidable quartet of big boat racers.

Although Neil Pryde has won the 2004/05 AY Grand Prix Championships - Skipper of the Year award before this season ending regatta, if the new skipper of YO! (8 points) steps up to the top of the podium here, they could dislodge Hi-Fidelity (11 points) on count back for the 2004/05 AY Boat of the Year award. Take a peek at this seasons progressive point score or see how your favorite team ended up in the AY Rankings http://asianyachting.com/news/Rankings0405.htm

The return of Hong Kong based yachts to SE Asian waters has Marcel Liedts X-612 Hocux Pocux 2, last years Racing 2 winner defending his title against the worthy opponents of Peter Churchouse's Warwick 19.5m Moonblue 2 and Wade Kimpton's heavy displacement Stephens 24m Lady M from NZ who won the Commodores Cup at the windy Royal Langkawi Regatta in March this year.

Racing Class 3 has attracted a number of Aussie yachting icons with George Snow owner of maxi Brindabella and veteran of 24 Hobart races leading the way by convincing Mariner Boating Holiday’s Trevor Joyce, to add this regatta to his growing list of sailing destinations. They have chartered four identical Sunsail Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 35’s all named Princess - Princess Athena (George Snow), Princess Sharda (Tony Hearder), Princess Anna (Karl Stechmann) and Princess Arietta (Hans Sommer former CYCA Commodore) apparently princesses by name but not by nature. This is a good example of how 'fly in, have fun and fly out again' yacht racing has a big future in the Asian Region.

While the Aussie's are expecting close racing on a level rating basis, they will have some solid competition on handicap with the rest of the boats in their class. Singapore based Bill Bremmer’s Sydney 36 Foxy Lady, the two Thai Navy Farr MRX 36’s, David Pollard’s X412 Foreign Xchange 2, Saranya Makison’s Jeanneau 35 Magic Roundabout and Andy Dowden’s Image Asia Sunsail Jeanneau 461 will all be keen to show the Princesses the way home.

Magic Roundabout completely dominated at the recent Top of the Gulf Regatta ahead of Foreign Xchange 2 and the Thai Navy's Farr MRX 36’s won quite convincingly here last year and at the last few King's Cup in Phuket.

Another tough contest is expected to come from the 4 different Sportboat designs. Jonathan Mahony's Mumm 30 Happy Endings has repaired the mast damage from the Singapore Straits Regatta in time to defend last years title from David Bell's 2nd placed Fremantle 8 Pink Pussy Cat. Mark Horwood's Phuket Sports 8 Image Asia Attitude 8 is expected to have the legs on the group in fresh breezes but has found it difficult to beat John Vause's Pattaya built Buzz 8 on handicap as this incredible Runnalls 8 design has won 2 out of 2 events since launching.

The warm waters of the Gulf of Thailand are proving very attractive to multihull sailors. Radab Kanjanavanit Farrier F9 Cedar Swan is ready to repeat last years striking performance but the 2 Samui built Radical Bay 8000's of Pierre Forsans China House and Kim Thomas Coco Blues (King's Cup winner) will be out to spoil their chances. Kirati Asakul's heavier Lock Crowther 43 Sonic from Ocean Marina recently dominated the Top of the Gulf Regatta could be a cat among the pigeons. Others to watch out for in the 7 strong fleet are Francesco Brancaccio's Farrier F24 Vivace, David Hill's Formula 28 Gnome and Martin Peters Tiki 30 Nok Talay.

No matter what the result, this year’s Koh Samui Regatta is shaping up to be a lot of fun. At the end of each days racing competing crews will be able to unwind and relax with plenty of refreshments at the Regatta Tavern - on the beach in front of the Central Samui Beach Resort. Organisers must be commended for finding a opening in the calendar and choosing this magical setting that enables owners and crew from all around the world to get together for friendly competition. Many battles that start in the South China Sea are likely to be permanent features during the fast approaching 2005/06 season.

For more news and information www.samuiregatta.com

Koh Samui
The Koh Samui Race Reports is the final in a 3 part series of events used to promote South China Sea cruising routes and developing regional boating facilities as a new and exciting sailing destination opening up to
world cruisers.

Being Thailand’s third largest island at 247 square kilometers Koh Samui has become one of South East Asia’s top five most visited tourist destinations. The neighboring islands of Koh Phangan (famous for the full moon parties), Koh Tao and the breathtaking National Marine Park offer visitors a wide range of activities such as sailing, scuba diving, snorkeling and adventure excursions.

The island’s established infrastructure includes International educational and medical facilities, along with a wide choice of high street shopping brands, exquisite dining venues (European and Thai) and beautiful white sandy beaches, Koh Samui stands out as one of the jewels in Thailand’s illustrious crown.

The 2005 Koh Samui Regatta is a ISAF recognised event, organised under the auspices of the Yacht Racing Association of Thailand, working hand in hand with the Royal Thai Navy. Major Sponsors are CAT Telecom, Central Samui Beach Resort, Bank of Ayudhya and the Tourism Authority of Thailand. Event Marketing Support by Paul Poole (South East Asia) Co., Ltd.

AsianYachting Ventures Sdn. Bhd. (Co. No. 627106-T)
A 308 PD Perdana Condo Resort, Jln Pantai, 71050, Pt Dickson, Malaysia
Tel: 6 06 6477701 Email: info@asianyachting.com

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