The second race of the Phuket King's Cup Regatta took place yesterday in light winds
Yesterday’s Binatone and Royal Phuket Marina Resort and Spa Andaman Sea Race at the Phuket King’s Cup Regatta took the 75 strong fleet on a course from the small island of Koh Phi Phi back to Phuket. However, light winds and baking heat tested many competitors to the limit.
As the sun rose over a still Phi Phi bay, the chance of a race back to Phuket looked slim. However, the race committee’s Navy boat marked the startline and with wind of just 8-10knots, all classes started under spinnaker.
Racing and Premier cruising classes took a detour to lengthen their course to 38NM with the cruising classes remaining on the 32NM run back to Phuket through a series of gates.
In the Racing class, Jelik once again had a good start and led the fleet between the islands of Koh Aeo and Koh Hi. After a decision to head off to find more wind they were caught out and were soon overtaken by Linklaters Mandrake. Mandrake continued to lead the fleet over the line in a long race which saw the windspeed drop to just 2 knots. Yo followed closely yet never managed to make a gain. The results however, saw Keith Moore’s, Pla Loma take first place on handicap, Yo second and Mandrake third.
Premier Class saw Race1’s winners fighting it out again for poll position. John Wardill’s Australian Maid sweated it out to take first, Elektra took second and Hocux Pocux finished third.
Good spinnaker work was crucial in the light airs and many decided the lack of wind and heat was just too much. A third of the boats either retired or did not manage to pass through the final gate before closure. The race even saw a few boats kedging to avoid the affects of the tidal stream just a few miles from the finish line off Koh Bon.
Lisa Chilton sailing on a charted Sunsail yacht said; “We absolutely roasted on our way back from Phi Phi island, we were first off the mark at the start, first with our spinnaker and first through the second gate. But then the wind died and we were all baking so decided to retire.” All boats had to pass through the last gate for safety reasons and many could still be seen coming into the bay off Kata Beach Resort at 8pm.
See www.kingscup.com for race results.