4th Phang Nga Bay Regatta 2002
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Planning underway with QBE Insurance on board again
August 27th 2001

The Phang Nga Bay Regatta formerly known as the Phuket-Phang Nga-Krabi Regatta is once again in the planning for the Chinese New Year, 11th - 14th February 2002. Organised by the Ao Chalong Yacht Club in conjunction with ArtAsia Press and the Phuket Yacht Haven the regatta is one of the most popular sailing events held in Phuket and is rapidly growing to be one of the more attractive events for both local and international racing and cruising boats competing on the Asian Racing Circuit.

Apart from the emphasis-on-fun aspect of this regatta, the three day event takes the fleet through one of the most magical and scenically beautiful areas in South-east Asia - Phang Nga Bay. The regatta is raced amidst the beautiful limestone mountains that have formed to make Phang Nga Bay one of the most picturesque locations in Thailand.

From a modest fleet of fourteen boats, the regatta has grown to thirty-eight entrants with over two hundred participants in the 2001 race.This certainly attests to the regatta's increasing popularity and is now being placed on the 'must do' list of races in South-east Asia.

The 3 race event begins on February 11th from the tropical beach location at Rai Ley in Krabi, racing through Phang Nga Bay with overnight stops at Koh Yao and Chong Lat and finishing the final race at The Yacht Haven in Phuket, where the final party and award ceremony will be held on the 14th.

The organising committee were very happy to receive news last month that for the third consecutive year QBE Insurance would play a major role as a leading sponsor of the event. As a major sponsor, QBE shall again have a race named in their honour. Last year the QBE Sprint was raced from Chong Lat to the Phuket Yacht Haven and proved to be one of the more exciting races of the event over a shorter course.

More sponsorship opportunities are available and any interest in supporting the event should be directed to the Regatta Secretary on E-mail: info@bayregatta.com

Notice of Race and Sailing instructions are soon to be posted. The official website for the race is also underconstruction and will be found at www.bayregatta.com ArtAsia Press also has an extensive libarary of photographs from previous years events. Some stunning images can be seen of Spinnakers flying against the mountainous background of Phang Nga Bay.

Images can be preveiwed on the website and any orders should be sent to: E-mail photo@aapress.net.
Andrew Craig
Communications Manager

3rd Phuket Phang Nga Krabi Regatta 2001
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3rd Phuket Phang Nga Krabi Regatta 2001
by Michele Pippen

Unique is a word that springs to mind in describing the annual Phuket Phang Nga Krabi Regatta held over the Chinese New Year. The 24 January 2001, official registration and opening party at Raleigh Beach, saw 38 entries which proved the regatta to be rapidly increasing in popularity considering only three years ago the list numbered only 14 entries!

QBE Insurance, Phuket Magazine and Phuket Island Lager came in as the major sponsors including a longer list of assisting sponsors including Phuket Yacht Haven, Nakalay Junk, Storm Vogel, Laguna Phuket...

The cruising division comprised 20 yachts with Mike Downard's Tag and Jim Ellis' Remington dominating the leading positions consistently throughout the three day regatta both across the line and on handicap. With the combination of the rather light airs and design extremes of the racing class, from the classics such as Storm Vogel and Isobar, to Big Buzzard, Hocux Pocux and Yo! It was no surprise to see the grey hull and distinct mast of Yo! take out line honours and 1st on handicap in all three races.

Multihulls competing this year numbered only three with Fine Pitch, Summersalt and Full Steam slogging it out across Phang Nga Bay.

The first day's race, The Phuket Island Lager Race, took the fleet from Raleigh Beach, Krabi on a course winding around the islands and finishing south-east of Ko Yao Noi.  The morning easterly for the start swung predictably further to the north as the day progressed and finished the day blowing out from the north west.

In the racing division, Richard Steinke's Isobar and the all-girl crew of four aboard Simpatico had some fun and games with trimming and concentration from the Hong group of islands, Krabi. Simpatico was finally rewarded by crossing the line ahead of Isobar.

The night's prize giving and thirst-quenching beer drinking took place in the channel between Ko Yao Noi and Ko Yao Yai aboard the giant Nakalay Junk.

Results of Race 1:

Cruising Class: 1st Remington, 2nd Fat Cat, 3rd Tag
Multi's: 1st Summersalt, 2nd Fine Pitch, 3rd Full Steam
Racing Class: 1st Yo!, 2nd Hocux Pocux, 3rd Isobar

Day 2, the Phuket Magazine Around the Islands Race, certainly challenged the crews' light airs sailing skills. At one stage the fleet could be seen meandering amongst the Hong Group of Islands, Krabi, with enough breeze to keep their spinnakers filled. However, with the yachts on a course heading south and the tide in a northerly direction it placed the entire fleet in what looked like suspended animation - great photographic opportunity!

The fleet made it's way up  to the picturesque and calm Ko Chong Lat where the night's celebrations and prize giving was once again hosted aboard the Nakalay Junk.

Results Day 2:

Cruising Class: 1st Tag, 2nd Remington, 3rd Rock n' Blues
Multi's: 1st Fine Pitch, 2nd Summersalt, 3rd Full Steam
Racing Class: 1st Yo!, 2nd Hocux Pocux, 3rd Big Buzzard

Final race day, The QBE Sprint took the fleet west across Phang Nga Bay and finally, for a few boats, to a finish line east of the channel between Phuket and the Thai mainland. From the light airs at the start line to a no air situation,  the race had many choosing to retire as it became evident that the course was not to be shortened east of Ko Panak.

The call of the hospitality facilities at the Phuket Yacht Haven became a much better option. The majority of the fleet steamed up the channel to freshen up for the closing party, with a great buffet and live band to set the ambience as the sun set over the hills of Phuket Island.

It seemed the light airs hasn't deterred owners and skippers from planning to join the regatta again next year for the 4th Phuket Phang Nga Krabi Regatta 2002.

Cruising Class: 1st Tag, 2nd Remington, 3rd Freewind
Multi's: 1st Fine Pitch, 2nd Summersalt
Racing Class: 1st Yo!, 2nd Emerald Blue, 3rd Hocux Pocux

Cruising Class: 1st Tag, 2nd Remington, 3rd Fat Cat
Multi's: 1st Fine Pitch, 2nd Summersalt, 3rd Full Steam
Racing Class: 1st Yo!, 2nd Hocux Pocux, 3rd Emerald Blue

Report by Michele Pippen

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