Royal Langkawi International Regatta 2012 – Race Report 3

12 January, 2012

Frank Pong’s Jelik II sets new round the island race record…
By AsianYachting MultiMedia

With wind gusting up to 18 knots, Frank Pong’s 75ft Reichel Pugh Jelik II took off at break neck speed and continued to set a blistering pace around the islands to the South East of the 99 island archipelago. Averaging 10.8 knots, it took only 02:41:19 to complete the twenty eight nautical mile course and they were back at the club in time for lunch. Frank said afterwards ” Although we slowed in the lee of Singa Besar and took evasive action for a long fishing net we never stopped and had a wonderful tour of the scenic islands”. Despite this magnificent performance the handicap honours goes to Marcus Blackmore’s TP52 Hooligan making it five wins out of six races and has one hand firmly on the trophy. Neil Pryde’s Welbourn 52 Hi Fi slotted into second place which relegated Jelik II down to third. However this result elevates Jelik II into third overall.

In the IRC 1 class Ben Copley’s Club Swan 42 Katsu seems to have a slight speed edge over Rick Pointon’s J130 Jing Jing, but when handicaps are applied its Pointon’s Jing Jing that comes out on top. To add further insult to injury, Vincent Chan’s Titan 36 Mata Hari clocked in with second place leaving Katsu down in third place. These three boats are in the same order in the overall stakes.

For the rest of the classes the course is 22nm and takes them between Pulau Dayang and Singa Besar up the Dayang Bunting Strait. This area in the lee of the hilly island proved to be a bit tricky with gusty patches favouring some boats over the others.

Stuart Williamson’s Beneteau 34.7 Skandia Endeavour Of Whitby returned to form by taking out the daily double and in doing so regained top spot on the IRC 2 pointscore. Missing out on the favourable gust in the Dayang Bunting Strait left defending champion Niels Degenkolw’s IOR 3/4 Ton Xyacht Phoenix trailing a few minutes behind and down in second place. John Kara’s Dehler 10.6m Skybird came good with third place to clamber back into third overall.

Christopher Lim’s Singapore Management University (SMU) stayed on the pace and picked the right path through the wind holes in the Strait to triumph in Race 5 and take the overall lead in the Sports Boat Class. A huge broach on the outside stretch unsettled Mohd. Masyuri B Rahmat’s Malaysian Armed Forces but they recovered well to escape with second place and one point behind the leader. Racking up a series of third places Khairul Nizam Mohd Afendy Malaysian Yachting Association / KFC holds onto third overall.

Once again Andrew Stransky’s Fantasia hit the start line on time and roared away into the distance to score their fourth win in a row and an insurmountable lead in the Multihull Class. The arrival of experienced crew has lifted the performance of the defending champion, Grenville Fordham’s 11.6m Andaman Cabriolet Niña into second place and slowly closing in on second overall. Third place for James Wilding Dufour – Nautitech 475 Mind The Gap keeps them in second overall but will have to stop the advances from the Andaman Cabriolet Niña to hold onto it.

The Club Cruiser Class had the choice of starting at the early time slot 7:30am or with the bulk of the fleet at 9:30. For the early starters it has paid off big time. Defending champion Charles Hay’s Jeanneau 45 Smystery is on a charge and by winning the race is now tied on points with second placed Gavin Welman’s Hallberg-Rassy 53 Rascal at the top of the leaderboard. Philip Giles 16m Nom De Plume slotted into third place. Fifth place for Nicholas Smith’s Ericson 38 Free Wind is the best placed boat that chose the late starting time slot.

An early starting time slot saw the Ocean Rover Class finishing around the same time as the racing class. Henning Lenz on My Toy is absolutely ecstatic about winning four races in a row as it has never happened before. A gallant effort by Thomas C Gerard’s Terengganu built Warisan Duyong has earned them second place and a spot in the history books.

Tomorrow racing resumes on the outside courses and as the forecast is for more wind we can expect some more thrills and spills.

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