VinaCapital Hong Kong to Vietnam Race Reports

VinaCapital Hong Kong to Vietnam Race 2008

“An AsianYachting Grand Prix Championship Event

An AsianYachting Grand Prix Championship Event

VinaCapital Hong Kong to Vietnam Race 2008

18 October 2008
By Lindsay Lyons of RHKYC
Photos by Guy Nowell - RHKYC

Hi Fi wins VinaCapital Hong Kong to Vietnam Race 2008

Early position reports, and a favourable Observatory forecast suggested that this was going to be one of the fastest Hong Kong to Vietnam races on record, however by midday on day two it was apparent that the wind gods were declining to cooperate, with most of the fleet getting stuck in a major 'Wind Hole'.

Chasing a record of 42h 45m 41s, the best that Neil Pryde's Welbourne 52 Hi Fi could manage in the conditions was an elapsed time of 56h 06m 37s, securing yet another Line Honours for the recently modified boat.

Hi Fi eased across the line under cover of darkness, just 40 minutes ahead of 2006 winner, Paul Winkelmann's TP52, Island Fling but there was a further four hour wait before Sam Chan's TP52 FfreeFire 52 came in sight, finishing just after the witching hour on Saturday morning. The word from one crew member (and seasoned Hong Kong to Vietnam racer) was that the first day had been the 'roughest ever'. Fortis Mandrake came in at the same time, having retired due to a broken forestay.

With corrected time positions following the on-the-water order, the final IRC Division A boat to finish was Chris Meads' Corby 43, Full Metal Jacket after a re-visit to the cardinal mark in order to leave it to port. This return cost them around 20 minutes, however this did not affect the final results for the division, which read; 1- Hi Fi, 2 - Island Fling, 3 - FfreeFire 52, 4 - Full Metal Jacket, Fortis Mandrake - DNF

With a weighting of 1.5 on the Offshore element, Island Fling successfully defended her 2006 China Coast Race Week title, due in part to a near-faultless China Coast Regatta, leaving Hi Fi to take up second place.

The slower boats in IRC Division B seemed to be worse affected by the lack of wind, with Shahtoosh and Thea retiring after spending 20 hours in two knots of breeze and Miss Salona II turning on their engines after two days of minimal progress.

Ho Ho Ho having retired on day two to head to Hainan Island after losing their rudder, this left only the Drew Taylor / Joachim Isler owned Mills 41, Ambush to finish in perfect conditions, with an elapsed time of 75h 32m 26s, giving them the Division B title and a corrected time 2.5 hours behind FMJ.

The destination of Nha Trang is fast developing into an international holiday destination, yet, in spite of its enviable coastal location, long beach and (usually) great breeze there is very little on offer in the way of sailing activities. The people of Nha Trang will have another opportunity to see leisure sailing in action during Sunday's Beach Race, which will offer the sight of racing yachts competing "around the cans" just off the beach.
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VinaCapital Hong Kong to Vietnam Race 2008

15 October 2008 Race Start
By Lindsay Lyons of RHKYC
Photos by Guy Nowell - RHKYC

On one of Hong Kong’s glorious ‘autumn’ days, the ten entrants in the VinaCapital Hong Kong to Vietnam Race gathered of the South East of Lamma Island for the start 1200hrs start of the biennial 656nm Offshore Category 1 yacht race to Nha Trang in Vietnam.

With 18 knots ENE, Race Officer Donald Wilks elected to set a windward mark some 0.75 nm from the start, and after the starboard rounding kites were up and the fleet set a spanking pace.

By the first radio schedule, albeit with Island Fling, Fortis Mandrake and Miss Salona II failing to make a report to the radio control boat, Neil Pryde’s Hi Fi was narrowly ahead of Sam Chan’s Ffree Fire 52 on the water, with Ambush and Full Metal Jacket around 16nm behind, having covered 70nm in the first 6 hours.

The leading boats are well within the ETA required for a new monohull race record, (sub 42h 45m 41s), however at the Skippers’ briefing on Tuesday, the forecast was for conditions to soften slightly as the boats neared the coast of Vietnam, so all eyes are on the weather.

Not expecting to break records, Ho Ho Ho, Thea and Shahtoosh were back in the 50’s and due to arrive at their destination Saturday.  On board Shahtoosh, on her first offshore race … in fact, her first race of any description is VinaCapital director Due Quach, who was selected from eight hopeful applicants to represent the company on the race.

Talking the night before the race, Quach expressed her determination to be as useful as possible and to learn form the experience .. as possibly the first female offshore racer from Vietnam, there is no doubt that she will set a benchmark for others.
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Goto Purplefinder tracking at:

VinaCapital Hong Kong to Vietnam Race 2008

Starts on 15 October 2008
By Lindsay Lyons of RHKYC
Photos by Guy Nowell - RHKYC

The VinaCapital Hong Kong to Vietnam Race, organised by the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club (RHKYC), will start on 15 October 2008 to the South East of Lamma Island. The Offshore Category 1 race will test the ten entrants in a 656nm "downhill slide" to Nha Trang in Vietnam and conditions look favourable for an attempt on Grant Wharington's 2004 record of 42h 45m 41s set on the 103 foot maxi, Skandia.

In IRC Division A, the 2006 winner, Island Fling has returned to Asia to defend her title against stiff competition, which includes FfreeFire 52, Fortis Mandrake, Hi Fi and Full Metal Jacket.  Paul Winkelmann's highly competitive TP52 will be trying to better her 2006 time of 48h 16m 05s.

In IRC Division B, Mills 41, Ambush is seeking to build on her recent China Coast Regatta title by winning her Vietnam division and having a crack at the overall China Coast Race Week title, with competition offered by Miss Salona II, Thea, Ho Ho Ho and Shahtoosh.

The Hong Kong to Vietnam Race was pioneered by RHKYC in 1996, becoming a biennial race in 2004 as an alternative to the Hong Kong to Hainan Race. The Race is sponsored for the third time by leading Vietnamese investment company, VinaCapital, and supported by Saigontourist.

Tracking services will be provided by Pole Star and SkyWave, who have been supporting RHKYC's offshore racing with their Purplefinder tracking service since 2006.

Find out more about the VinaCapital Hong Kong to Vietnam Race from this website

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