All the trouble and worry put into preparing for the 18th Phuket Raceweek paid off as organisers and Phuket Raceweek rights holders Media Business Services Co Ltd managed by Byron and Rung Jones were rewarded with blue skies and great sailing for the first day of the regatta. Byron was on the start boat (a dive boat kindly supplied by Aloha Diving) while Rung crewed on Saffron, a stealth cat formerly known as Java.
With the wind at about six-seven knots, PRO Simon James got the racing underway in Ao Chalong at 11 am, dispatching the three-class ten-boat fleet in sequence with the Racing Multis first followed by the Cruising Multis & then the Monohulls.
Dan Fidock’s Sportsboat Fugazi, skipped masterfully by Mark Pescott had a tremendous performance on the water today and with two wins and a second-place finish as it leads the class heading into day two.
Twin Sharks and the honour went to John Prestely who managed to win the first race and secure second place in the next races putting Twin Sharks in second overall heading into day two.
Bonza, which tend to excel in high wind, settled for a third spot today in the OMR Sports Multihull Class based on its 3rd, 4th & 3rd place finishes. Jojo Tayong’s all-Filipino-crew on Voodoo finished fourth in the four-boat class.
Alan Carwardine, skippering the boat he built, put on quite a show guiding Dow Fidock’s Stealth 11.8 Saffron (formerly Java) to three victories. It was the first time Saffron had entered a race using its new name, so a very impressive debut, indeed.
John Coffin’s Fez, a Stealth 12.6, skipped by Mick Coleman took second place across the board while Glywn & Karen Rowlands Stealth 12 Twister 2 took all three third-place finishes.
But the racing is so close between the Stealths that these positions are bound to change over the next two days.
The monohull class saw Nils Degenklow’s X ¾ ton MK 2 yacht Phoenix capture all three races today.
Paul Merry’s Night Train, a Hanse 415, and Java Yachting’s Mas Alegre, a Steadfast 40, flip-flopped for second and third-place places in the first two races. Then Mas Alegre claimed second in the final race as well as Night Train ran into trouble and did not finish the final race.
A handicap pursuit race.
The action continues on the water tomorrow in Ao Chalong starting at 11 am. Saturday’s racing will also include for the first time in Phuket waters, a handicap pursuit race, where boats will start at different times according to their handicap (slowest boat first) and race to the finish line. It is hoped that most boats will come to the finish line together thus making a different style of race.
If the wind holds, five Wing Foilers and five Kite Foilers are expected to strut their stuff out on the bay. And a number of non-racing boats will join the event for a PCYC Pursuit sail consisting of two one-hour sails across the bay, so it should be a very exciting day on the water.
Results are updated live each day and can be viewed on the Results Page.
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