Boracay Cup 2012: Day One
28 February, 2012
Story and photo courtesy AsianYachting MultiMedia.
Racers off to a flying start, mass confusion for cruisers…
Fifteen to twenty knots from East North East greeted sailors on the first day of the Boracay Cup. It never fails to disappoint and as an increase is forecast over the coming days, we are in for another spectacular display of sailing. PRO Jerry Rollin chose lengthy passage races to suit the three classes, that took them the length of Boracay Island, into the Carabao Channel, up to San Jose Point or Tablas Island and back again. Now how easy is that? Well the turning mark for the PY Class went missing and it seems that none of the IRC Cruiser/Racer skippers saw the course boards and played follow the leader with total confusion breaking out at their top mark. Lengthy protest hearings are going on as we piece together this Race Report.
No such problems in the Racing Class. Choosing the right combination of sails for the wind strength and some crew role familiarisation, then hit the start line with speed and they were off. Frank Pong’s Reichel/Pugh 76 Jelik III leapt into the lead and welcomed the chance to stretch their legs on the predominately long reaching and running course. Neil Pryde’s Welbourn 52 Hi Fi joins the fleet and is eager to open up old rivalries with Ernesto Echauz’s TP52 Jelik V, Sam Chan’s TP52 Freefire and Ray Ordoveza’s Excel 53 Karakoa. Hot off the start line they jostled for position on the up wind beat before settling down on sheer boat speed in front of Boracay Beach. Frank Pong’s huge spinnaker on Jelik III was the first to come back into view and made quick work of the remaining legs to finish the 28nm course in a little over three hours. It took almost half an hour for Hi Fi, Freefire and Jelik V to appear around the headland. After handicaps have been applied Frank Pong’s Jelik III takes out the daily double by a mere 66 seconds from Neil Pryde’s Hi Fi. Although Ray Ordoveza’s Karakoa finished almost an hour after Jelik III they have leap froged the two TP 52′s to claim third place.
The three yachts in the IRC Cruiser/Racer Class committed the cardinal sin by not taking any notice of the course boards displayed on the side of the Coastguard Vessel and radio announcement. Both Klaas Huisjes Sydney 36 Sandoway and Peter Sorenson’s Farr 1104 Rags are under charter and not familiar with the waters. Jesus Avecilla’s Beneteau First 36.7 Selma Star C! Calibre ROX was late for the start and entered on port tack, so the course boards were not visible. He decided to follow Huisjes Sandoway as they have been here once before who led them all astray. Jesus Avecilla must be awarded the Disney Pics “Stick-at-itivity” award for rounding the San Jose mark and the missing Carabao Mark to cover all course possibilities before returning to the finish in last place. After long deliberations the International Jury awarded Avecilla’s Selma Star first place plus Rags and Sandoway equal third place for their efforts as a consolation prize. Martin Tanco’s X452 Challenge is undergoing repairs to the hydraulics and expected to join the fleet tomorrow.
After claiming for lost time looking for the missing turning mark, the International Jury awarded the two boats in the PY Cruising Class their respective claims. This did not make much difference as David Mc Kenna’s Sun Odyssey 42 Raparee XXX, that he has kindly lent to his faithful crew to use have scored the daily double in David’s absence. Despite being smaller and heavily reefed at the start David Wheeler’s Cape Carib 31 Freewheeler pressed on and missed out on overhauling Raparee XXX by only seven minutes on corrected time.
Racing continues tomorrow and two windward/leeward races in the windy Boracay Channel have been scheduled. Expect some fun and games if today is anything to go by…
More details and results on the Subic Sailing Website, www.subicsailing.com/index.html.