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15th Royal Langkawi Int. Regatta 2017

AY Pre-Regatta Report

2016/17 AY Grand Prix Event

Sailing crowd, to ring in the New Year ...
By AsianYachting MultiMedia
9:01:2017 Langkawi, Malaysia: As well as being the first International event on the Malaysian Tourism Calendar, it's the perfect occasion for sailors to come together and ring in the Sailing New Year. Thirty racing teams will be fighting it out, on picturesque Bass Harbour and Coastal courses, to the East of Langkawi. If conditions are favourable, the 'Round the Islands' race will be run and the possibility of breaking Frank Pong's RP75 Jelik race record set in 2014, taking 02:14:53 to complete the 28nm course, could be on the cards.

Since the regattas inception, the main aim has always been to provide competitive and enjoyable racing for all crews, irrespective of the design or vintage of yacht. The fleet is split into six classes, ranging from some newbies to regular competitors, returning to fight over the class titles.

Two powerful TP52's, Aussie Peter Ahern's syndicated Oi! have five RLIR victories to their name and looking forward to tackling the Whitcraft brothers latest, all conquering and still nameless THA 72, at the front of the fleet.

Always big supporters of the regatta, the Royal Malaysian Navy are fielding their DK47 Uranus skippered by Masyuri bin Rahmat and supplying a fleet of Platu 25's for the Sportsboat class. We can expect some tactical racing of the highest order, from this classy fleet, as they blast into the sailing new year in grand style.

Presently Steven Manning/Anthony Root's Ker 42 Black Baza are only half a point from the leaders, on the 2016-17 AsianYachting Grand Prix (AYGP) Pointscore. They will be the first yacht to contest 5 events this season and take back the lead in the AYGP Rankings, plus very eager to have another crack at the Prime Minister's Challenge trophy.

Vincent Chan's defending IRC 2 champion Titan 36 Mata Hari have been bumped up a class to IRC 1 and will be taking on four bigger yachts, John Kara's Beneteau First 45 Insanity, Jack Christensen's Bavaria 49 Linda and Scott Bradley's Sydney 40 Emagine. Faugeres Elliot 46 Ph Plus, is a newcomer and may need time to adjust to the high octane pace of the racing class. They are all eyeing off the LADA-IRC Challenge Trophy for their mantelpiece.

The IRC 2 class, is shaping up to be a battle between Thailand and Malaysian racing stalwarts. Niels Degenkolw's, multiple RLIR winning X 3/4 ton Mk2 Phoenix, Stuart Crompton/Liz Scoch's Farr 1104 Sailescapes Farrgo Ladies and newcomer Garret Rodrigues Swanson 36 Awatea, are leading the Thai charge. Leaving Chris Mitchell's Raja Muda Regatta winning Naut 40 Lady Bubbly, Fabian Fernandez's Eygthene 24 O/B Freedom 12 and Jeremy Camps Impala 28 OOD Old Pulteney Blue Angel, to fend off the Thai challenge and retain the RLIR IRC 2 Challenge Trophy in Malaysian hands.

Seven youth teams from the Singapore Management University, University Malaysia Terengganu, Burapha University Sailing Club (Thailand), Royal Malaysian Navy, two from the Royal Selangor Yacht Club and an independent Pine-Pacific from Thailand, will be vying for the Langkawi Sports Trophy. Racing one design Platu 25's has proved to be an excellent training ground for young Asian sailors. Last year, Koh Ling Ying's Singapore Management University and Rizal Mahadi Sazili's Royal Langkawi Yacht Club went head to head and the leaderboard changed each day, with the SMU triumphing by one point. They are both back and ready to fight it out again. There will also be trophy's for the under 25 age group.

The fast growing Multihull scene in Asia, has the ability to reinvent itself, with new entries each year. Robert van Paridon's huge 12.81m trimaran Tantrum Too has competed on all major regattas this season and taking on Aussie Rick Fielding's 11.58 Mojo, Gerhard Pils nippy Pulse 600 Fetz Ma and 2015 "Tunku Abdullah Sportsmanship" award winner, Bob Mott is fielding the massive 15.24m Pahi. Interesting lineup, can little Fetz Ma become the giant slayer or will the big boats sail plan, blanket them off the start line?

Due to low entries, the Club Cruiser, Ocean Rover and White Sails classes have been grouped together and are vying for the RLYC Commodore's Cup. A mixture of past winners and old favourites include, A’dale Adham Ayahudin's Oyster 55 Chantique and Henning Lenz 10.36m My Toy have won various classes here before.

Ramasamy Menon's Dehler 38 VG Offshore have come prepared and in with a big chance. Newcomers Korolev Nikolai's Hanse 44 Milashka and UK's John Ormston's 13m Invictas will have to be on their toes from the go, to tackle these seasoned campaigners.

This regatta is the sixth regatta in the AYGP Pointscore and brings us to the half way point in the 2016-17 Season. This gives SE Asian based yachts, an opportunity to close in, on the Rankings and by the end of the regatta, overtake others not competing here. Check out the 2016-17 AsianYachting Grand Prix Rankings by clicking on Skipper - Yacht - Regatta and Scoring System.

The special "Tunku Abdullah Sportsmanship" award in memory of the late Regatta Founding Chairman and RLYC Commodore Tunku Tan Sri Abdullah, is voted for by the participants and awarded for competitiveness, fair racing and comradeship, both on and off the water, during the regatta.

The Royal Langkawi International Regatta (RLIR) is organised by the Royal Langkawi Yacht Club (RLYC), sanctioned by World Sailing and the Malaysian Sailing Association (MSA), and supported by the Ministry of Youth and Sports, Malaysia. The RLIR is also a 5-star event on the AsianYachting Circuit.

The RLIR 2017 results, news and photos are available at: http://www.langkawiregatta.com
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Twitter https://twitter.com/langkawiregatta

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