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15th Cape Panwa Hotel Phuket Raceweek 2018

AY Race Report 4 & Summary

2018/19 AY Grand Prix Event

All over bar the shouting...
Victory for Team Hollywood, Phoenix, BeauX Esprit, Blade Runner IX,
Twin Sharks & Pixalux Blue
By AsianYachting MultiMedia
July 23rd Cape Panwa: As the breeze was still up in the mid teens and everyone eager to go on the final day of racing, PRO Simon James selected courses to suit the classes and complete the 8 race regatta schedule. A quick windward/leeward race for the big boats, followed by a long passage race outside Koh Hae, down to Koh Maton and finish in front of the Cape Panwa Hotel. Although in most classes the outright winners have been decided, the order for podium places were open for the taking and settled in a last day shootout. Capture the action in the complete AY Photo Gallery

It's no surprise that Ray Roberts planing TP52 Team Hollywood blitzed the course with another polished display, to win all 8 races and the overall IRC 1 title with a clean sheet. What is a surprise is Craig Nicholls Sydney 40 AquarII with an old set of sails from previous owners gone by, to step up against four evenly matched 40 footers and claim 2nd overall in these conditions. After a slow start to the regatta, David Dimmock's Swan 42 Loco, managed to string together 3rd places and ended up 3rd overall. Four 40-footers up against a TP52 is a tough challenge and as a result, the organisers introduced a special IRC I – 40 Division to the results sheet. They have been racing in close quarters and Aquarii comes out on top, with Loco in 2nd and East Marine Emgaine and Ramrod tied on points for 3rd place.

Being the first regatta of the 2018-19 AsianYachting Grand Prix (AYGP) season, Ray Roberts TP52 Team Hollywood scored 8 race wins and takes the lead in the Rankings for the AYGP Skipper and Yacht of the Year awards.

Defending IRC 2 champion Niels Degenkolw's X3/4 Ton MK2 Phoenix made it 7 wins in a row and didn't have to race the eighth race to claim the title, for the third time. Aussie Susan Parker's all girl crew on Farr 1104 Krabi Boat Lagoon Pinocchio made a last ditch effort with 2nd and 1st places, to climb up into 2nd overall and relegate Max Palleschi's IOR Farr 40 Prime Factor to 3rd overall. After a good start to the regatta, Lyn Evans Farr 1104 Sailescapes Farrgo Ladies must be disappointed to finish up in 4th overall.

Only five passage races for the Cruising Class to determine the series. Keith Garry's X-412 BeauX Esprit's posted three wins in the heavy breeze races and the defending champion Chris Mitchell's Naut 40 Lady Bubbly came back at them to win the last two races in lighter conditions. After the drop race is taken into account, BeauX Esprit's takes the title by one point from Lady Bubbly. Although Tony Pfeiffer's Hansee 400E Venture did not finish today's race, they still hold onto 3rd overall as Rick Blomfield's Bavaria 39 Linda second race result has turned into a disqualification.

After taking off like a cut snake, Dan Fidock’s Moore 36 Fugazi, was reeled back in by Scott Galle's Diam 26 Blade Runner IX and everything rested on today's results. As almost a whole leg separates them on the water, its hard to judge who is winning on handicap during the race. When it came down to the number crunching, Blade Runner IX has it by 54 seconds on the first race and 4 minutes on the long race, to snatch the Multihull Racing title from under their nose. With a string of 3rd places, Peter Wilcox's Cosmo settled for 3rd and Glywn Rowlands Twister 2 in 4th, is the best they could do in the circumstances.

After posting six wins, John Newnham's Twin Sharks won the Firefly 850 One Design title with a day to spare and despite posting did not finish today, has defended the title for the 6th time. In Twin Sharks absence Hans Rahmann's Voodoo posted their first win of the series and solidified 2nd overall. Second place for George Eddings Blue Noze secures 3rd overall, while the rest of the fleet incurred breakages to score DNF and DNS during the regatta, to hold them back from the podium places.

A Port/Starboard incident in the pre-start, left Mick Tilden's overall leader Pixalux Blue, doing penalty turns as the starting horn sounded. Simon Oliver's Sudu Red returned to form yesterday and made a challenge for the Pulse 600 one-design title. Despite two boats failing to start on time, Oliver's Sudu Red charged away from the line and was never headed. Tilden's Pixalux Blue held of the challenge from Zam Bevan's Multihull Solutions H30 and by taking 2nd place, ended up tied on 11 points with Sudu Red. By posting 4 wins versus 3 wins, Pixalux Blue scrapes in over Sudu Red for the overall victory.

The Phuket Raceweek Recognition Award for Services to Sailing went to Andy Dowden for his many years of service and ventures in helping to develop the marine industry in Asia.

Summary
A tribute to Tom Howard and George McCready for services rendered during the regatta, who unfortunately passed away earlier this year by regatta founder Grenville Fordham, is a reminder of how far this regatta has progressed over 15 editions. After a few years of light weather, finally a regatta with a solid forecast living up to its reputation. Although initially a little hesitant, the crew warmed to the task and settled in for an exciting ride. Only a few breakages that were dealt with overnight, is a sign of the camaraderie amongst sailors in Phuket, to help each other out in adversity. Long considered the Home of Pleasure Boating in Asia and renown for staging fantastic regattas with Thai hospitality and cuisine, better mark down 17th-21st July 2019 for the 16th Cape Panwa Hotel Phuket Raceweek and make it a priority on the 'bucket list' of regattas.

More news, photos and results at: http://www.phuketraceweek.com
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