Welcome to the AsianYachting November 2002
NEWS and VIEWS

Stella's recent China Coast Series win will firmly place the Sydney 38 amongst the favourites during this years Asian Circuit.

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CONTENTS

1. Editorial
2. "Unluckiest sailor of the month" Award
3. Asian News
4. International
5. Speed Records

Browse past editions of News & Views by clicking on January February March April May June July  August September October

1. Editorial

Things are starting to hot up on the AsianYachting scene after Peter Ahern's 50ft custom built Murray design Yo! drew first blood at the 3rd Asean Regatta in Port Dickson last weekend. Check it out at .... http://asianyachting.com/news/AseanReg2002.htm Some of the fastest yachts and serious racing teams assembled in Asia have used this opportunity to prepare their boats and race crews, compare boat speeds and complete modifications before heading north to Port Klang for this months island hopping Raja Muda International Regatta (Nov 15 - 23rd) followed by the Phuket Kings Cup (Nov 30 - Dec 7) in Thailand.

Despite the holly Muslim fasting month of Ramadan falling over the traditional regatta period the now Sultan and former Raja Muda of Selangor has stated that the racing will go ahead as planned. A all girl crew and a team of RSYC youth sailors are expected to join a cast of International rock stars and sailing legends at the Royal Selangor Yacht Club for this annual classic.

In a bold attempt to catch the favourable North Westerly trade winds that have deserted them for three years the Kings Cup committee have decided to return to the original Phi Phi Island starting format that made this regatta famous in the 90's and race through the islands to Phuket one week earlier than usual. More Phuket King's Cup info at - http://www.kingscup.com

AsianYachting will be there, providing up to date Race Reports, Results and in depth coverage throughout the regatta season. As this is considered a voluntary service we ask anybody interested in providing digital photo's to swap amongst competitors and help by submitting articles for the regatta web pages to get in touch by return email or see me during the regatta.
Wishing everybody fair winds and good luck!
Capt Marty Rijkuris

2. "Unluckiest sailor of the month" Award

Le Defi Areva's (FRA 69 - I always said she could be trouble) damaged her mast in the last  race of Round robin 1 against Stars & Stripes has been replaced by a previous 2003-generation mast as repairs to the original mast will not be completed until the end of Round Robin II.

Then on the 17th Oct the Sayer 13 Siren broke a side stay at 2130hrs dropping the entire rig overboard during the latter stages of the Hong Kong to Hainan Race. The crew had no option but to cut the rig loose and although they suffered further complications when it caught on the keel, they managed to free themselves and motor onto Sanya. All of the crew are unharmed, although bitterly disappointed at having to abandon the race when 22nm ahead of arch-rival Stella.

Then at 03.50 GMT on Oct 20th Simone Bianchetti skipper of the Italian Open 60 Tiscali in the Around Alone informed his shore-team that he had dismasted. This combined with subsequent events and the camaraderie shown between the competitors to win this months Unluckiest sailor award. After a forced three day stopover in Brest to fix the auto-piloting systems and repair some hull damage Bianchetti restarted the race only to be dismasted. When the mast broke in three parts Simone was inside, the boat was running South West at 16 / 20 knots and the weather conditions were rapidly getting worse. Simone was not harmed in the accident and recovered all the pieces of the mast, made a jury rig and sailed on to the Northern Spanish fishing port of Carino.

An extraordinary set of events has unfolded amongst the competitors and their sponsors to get him racing again. Showing what the Around Alone is all about and the ultimate definition of what sailboat racing should be - stiff competition on the water, graciousness and camaraderie off it.

Under race rules, Simone must sail Tiscali to Cape Town to be eligible to continue racing in Around Alone and the organisers have issued a rescheduled race itinerary from Cape town to accommodate for the time lost on Leg 2.

Race Chairman Sir Robin Knox-Johnston responded to the news: “ We are desperately sorry to hear of Tiscali's dismasting. Simone is a tough and experienced sailor and this will be a great frustration to him.  We hope he can clear the mess of mast and rigging from the boat and be able to make a safe port quickly. Since Around Alone is scored on a points system and not elapsed time, Simone could only earn minimum points for this leg if he is able to find a replacement mast and rejoin the race, and this would give him 3 more legs to catch up and show us his metal.”

2. Asian News

1. In the wake of the Bali nightclub bombing the Japan Coast Guard will dispatch a patrol boat to Southeast Asian waters to conduct patrols and receive training in combating possible terrorist attacks. A move undoubtedly prompted by the recent spate of cowardly attacks by trained terrorist groups that abuse their beliefs and convince others that they can right the injustices of the world and attain heroic martyrdom by mass murdering innocent bystanders to further their cause.

The JCG has been dispatching patrol boats to these waters since November 2000 to conduct patrol missions and train with coastal nations as part of efforts to combat pirates in the region. As terror can strike suddenly anywhere these fanatic extremist groups which seem to roam freely around the globe have now become the enemy at our gates. However, this will mark the first time a patrol boat has been dispatched to these waters primarily to aid the governments combat terrorism, the JCG said.

2. Clipper 2002 Round the World Yacht Race
Hong Kong Clipper 
skippered by Justin Taylor crossed the Liverpool starting line first and after a strategic battle took line honours on Monday 4 Nov to win the first Liverpool to Cascais leg. The eight identical boats sponsored by International cities went head to head on the world's longest 35,000 nm circumnavigation race. The start was rescheduled due to extreme weather conditions, which saw storm force winds battering much of the UK. Website: http://www.clipper-ventures.com

3. China Coast Regatta
Fred Kinmonth's Sydney 38 Stella showed they will again be a major force on the Asian Yachting Circuit this year with a convincing 4 wins and a second to clinch the 2002 title. She was the winner in 2000 and runner up last year. More on the CCR http://www.chinacoastraceweek.com

4. Hong Kong to Hainan Race
Even though he didn't break the race record, Frank Pong is happy that Jelik has finally claimed not only line honours over the 330nm course, but the Hainan Race 2002 title on corrected time. Race Reports and Results http://asianyachting.com/news/ChinaCRW02.htm

5. Sorry for publishing the wrong dates and month for the Singapore Straits Regatta 2003 in the October News and Views. It is 15 to 19 January 2003 (not February). Quite a few people called to double check after browsing the revamped website at www.straitsregatta.com

6. Carlsberg Hobie Tiger World Championship will be held Raffles Marina, Singapore from Feb 10 - 14 New website at http://www.hobieworlds.com Mitch Booth (NED) has entered (See Unluckiest Sailor Award July) and having won two Olympic medals in sailing and over 10 sailing world championships, including the past 3 Formula 18 World Championships on a Hobie Tiger....

7. King's Cup News
The Principle Sponsor for the 16th Phuket King’s Cup Regatta is Binatone and the Royal Phuket Marina, Resort & Spa that are planning on building a eco friendly world class marina in Phuket. Gulu Lalvani the multi-millionaire owner of the international electronics giant Binatone stated that he was pleased to be involved with such a go ahead organisation as the King's Cup committee.

A retired 4-star Admiral of the Royal Thai Navy Admiral Varong Songcharoen is responsible for the significant changes in the way the 16th Phuket King’s Cup Regatta will be staged. Racing will be made more exciting, and more adjustable to changing conditions, by having separate courses for each fleet, two start lines, and courses that are designed specifically for each type of yacht. Results will be posted within minutes of the yachts finishing on the regatta website at www.kingscup.com and on strategically located TV monitors at the Regatta HQ.

8. Is Phuket Safe?
With the recent tragic events in Bali many foreign governments and media organisations have issued "Travel warnings" about Asia, and in doing so have mentioned Phuket Island and Patong in particular. As clearly there is no cost to foreign governments in telling their people not to come here so a group of western business people resident in Phuket – thought you might like to hear about their home from a different angle. Can the media get it right? Where is safe anyway?

9. The LIR committee is pleased to announce that the Prime Minister has agreed to patronize the Langkawi International Regatta hosted by the Royal Langkawi Yacht Club by offering a perpetual trophy which will be known as: The Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad Challenge Trophy. The esteemed trophy will be presented to the overall winner of the LIR series by Dr. Mahathir at the closing ceremony to be held at the Royal Langkawi Yacht Club on the 15th March 2003. More at www.langkawiregatta.com

 

10. With Christmas just around the corner one of the best presents I have come across is "Fighting Finish" published by Nomad Press. This excellent coffee table book lays bare the inside story of the harshest and most demanding fully crewed race around the world - The Volvo Ocean Race. The official story by international sailor Gary Jobson gives the feel of not only the adventure but also highlights the hard driving crew's obsession to win at almost any cost! Impress your friends as Fighting Finish is available at major bookshops or by ordering online at www.volvooceanrace.org and reasonably priced at $44.95 plus P & P.  It is 12 x 9 inches and contains 168 full-colour pages with 300 colour illustrations.

International News

1. AROUND ALONE - LEG 2 Start Summary
The committe had to change the planned Leg 2 departure from Torbay as a big depression moved across from the Atlantic. After the start competitors had to ride out the remainder of the storm and experienced confused seas for the first few days. As they approached the north coasts of Spain and Portugal "A monster depression about 2000 miles wide and almost the entire width of the North Atlantic took shape!" It brought with it 70 to 80 knot winds as the leaders battened down into survival mode to ride out an angry Atlantic. http://asianyachting.com/news/AroundAlone.htm

2. Route du Rhum - 59 of the world's fastest boats have entered the single handed 3540 nm race from St Marlo France to Pointe-à- Pitre, Guadeloupe. The monohulls start Nov 9 which includes Mike Golding on Ecover, Ellen MacArthur on Kingfisher and Nick Moloney in the 50ft class on Offshore Challenges I.

Nick aims to become the first Australian to complete the solo trans-Atlantic race. Ian Johnston and Cathy Hawkins were the first Aussie's to compete in the Route du Rhumn in 1982 but had to be rescued by Frenchman Olivier Moussy after their trimaran 'Rennie' capsized.

The Multihulls start on Nov 10 will include Alain Gautier on Foncia, Loick Peyron on Fujifilm and Giovanni Soldini on TIM. The first boats are expected to finish around November 19. Could this be the biggest ever professional ocean race with such a grand prix fleet? Website: http://www.routedurhum.org For the latest news from Nick http://www.nickmoloney.com or from Ellen and her title sponsor Kingfisher plc: http://www.kingfisherchallenges.com

 

3. Surprised that Sir Michael Fay is about to become the fourth New Zealander to enter the AC Hall of Fame at the New York Yacht Club, following in the footsteps of the late Sir Peter Blake, Russell Coutts and Tom Schnackenberg. I would have thought his corithian efforts of bringing NZ into the AC arena in the first place plus tackling the rules and taking on Dennis's catamaran debarkle has got us through to where we are today - that he would have been admitted long before now! The President of the Hall of Fame Halsey Herreshoff says "An international selection committee reviews nominations for membership to the institution each year and only those of outstanding merit are selected" - Can't understand why Alan Bond and the late Aust II designer Ben Lexen have not been inducted - Sour grapes has been suspected, surely they have a few photo's around the walls to remind them!

4. 31st America's Cup and Louis Vuitton Cup
Nine syndicates or racing  teams from Italy, Switzerland, Great Britain, Sweden, France and the United States have spent tens of millions of dollars apiece just to enter the competition — and only one will get the chance to challenge the current Cup holder, the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron. It's a good thing then, that in the hope of beating the Kiwis, who have held the Cup since 1995 has enticed the fabulously rich to open their wallets. The competition includes teams funded by Oracle's Larry Ellison, Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen and telco investor Craig McCaw; biotech mogul Ernesto Bertarelli; shipping magnate Vincenzo Onorato; British tech millionaire Peter Harrison; and, of course, all the old and new money associated with the New York Yacht Club. Round Robin 1 Summary. http://asianyachting.com/news/AmCup0203.htm

After the first round robins in the famously capricious winds of Auckland's Hauraki Gulf, two of the highest-spending syndicates, OneWorld Challenge (budget: $75 million) and Alinghi Challenge ($55 million) could be pleased that their investment had won them a share of the lead. But with six rounds to go before the February showdown with the Kiwis, nobody will be uncorking any champagne just yet. Try some other websites that seem to get the AC results and stories posted first plus the standings discussed in near real time at http://americascup.nzoom.com and another wonderful site: http://www.2003ac.com

5. BERMUDA GOLD CUP / SWEDISH MATCH TOUR
In a thrilling Final Round of the Bermuda Gold Cup, Denmark's Jesper Radich defeated countryman Jes Gram-Hansen before a large Hamilton Harbour spectator crowd to become the first Scandinavian to claim the coveted King Edward VII Cup at the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club (RBYC). Radich and his crew of Christian Plinius, Peter Poulsen and Andres Kristensen sailed to a victory worth $20,000 and valuable points on the Swedish Match Tour.

Racing the International One Design (IOD) classic class yachts in light and shifty wind puts a premium on boathandling and calling the shifts. "In these conditions you'll never win without being lucky!" said Radich The 33-foot IOD sloops used for the regatta are probably unique among the variety of boats used on the Swedish Match Race Tour.

These 7120 lb meter boats designed in the 30's have long overhangs and a full keel with an attached rudder. Beautiful boats - but the heavy boats accelerate and turn slowly and I bet it took a bit of tactical adjustment for the veteran match racers who generally race in more nimble craft. Photo's from Sergio Dionisio (Oceanfashion).

SPEED RECORDS

1. Merit smashes Gosford to Lord Howe record
Mon 28 Oct 2002 By Peter Campbell,
The Sydney yacht Merit a Volvo 60 owned and skippered Ian Treleaven smashed Helsal 111's long-standing record set in 1988 for the 408 nautical mile Gosford to Lord Howe ocean yacht race. Thereby completing an impressive qualifying sail for the 2002 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race....

2. REGAINED THE RECORD
American Skipper Steve Fossett and his multinational crew aboard the 125ft maxi-catamaran PlayStation shaved nearly 55 minutes off the 'Around Britain and Ireland' sailing record that was recently set by Maiden II. They began the record attempt at1620 UTC 20th October 2002 from Ramsgate Harbour. Wind 22 knots east, boat speed about 25 knots. Sky overcast; light rain. Barometer falling steadily. To beat Maiden 2's (GBR) record which stood at 4d 17h 5m 22s, they had to average a speed of 15.93 kts for the 1787 nm course. At the finish line off Ramsgate PlayStation's record-breaking passage was recorded at 4 days, 16 hours, 9 minutes, 36 seconds. All figures are subject to checking and eventual ratification by the World Sailing Speed Record Council before the record becomes official. Complete rapup at... www.fossettchallenge.com

3. Simon McKeon and Tim Daddo have applied to the WSSR to conduct an attempt on the outright World Sailing Speed Record with Macquarie Innovation for a selected 28 days from 25th October to December 4. As in the past, the attempts will be conducted at Sandy Point, Victoria and, time permitting, they intend pursuing different class records and accordingly sailing with rigs of different sizes. The primary method of measuring speed for the 500 metre record will be via a video camera located on Macquarie Innovation. They also intend to run a GPS system concurrently in the hope of receiving approval for this system.
WSSR Website: http://www.sailspeedrecords.com Macquarie Speed Sailing Team: http://www.macquarie.com.au/speedsailing.htm

4. Sailrocket is a radical new British design being developed by Paul Larsen, Malcolm Barnsley and others, to challenge the outright world speed sailing record are looking for sponsors to build their hydrofoiled craft. The current record of 46.5 knots was set by the Australian boat Yellow Pages Endeavour in 1993. Website: http://www.sailrocket.com

5. VAN DEN HEEDE heads out again.
Brest, France Sunday 3 Nov at 9:40:57: Jean-Luc Van den Heede and his aluminium monohull "Adrien" set off on a quest to conquer the record for a solo, non-stop East to West circumnavigation against the ocean currents and trade winds most of the way.

His latest plan included waiting for a favourable departure window and undergoing a complete physical exam to be given the go ahead from his physicians. Adrian, his aluminium sloop, has also had some examinations and reconfigured for the solo circumnavigation so as not to injure its skipper with foam padding on the ceiling inside and plastic halfpipes on the aluminium edges inside.

His last attempt began on October 7 2001 when he made a fast passage down the Atlantic and around Cape Horn but 100 miles into the southern ocean was forced to abandon his attempt when serious damage to the keel was discovered (Which earned them the AY January 2002 Unluckiest sailor award ). His first attempt in 1991 ended in a collision with a wreck which tore his hull halfway between the Horn and New Zealand.

Only three sailors have completed this particular Everest of sailing: Sir Chay Blyth in 1970 (292 days), Mike Golding in 1994 (161 days) and Philppe Monnet in 2000(151 days, 19 hours, 54 minutes, the current record). Van den Heede believes he can do better, and with four previous circumnavigation races under his belt (two BOC Challenges, two Vendée Globes), this 57 year old former mathematics teacher has the experience, and, he believes, the boat to do it.

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