14th SMU-RM Western Circuit Sailing Regatta 2011

 Goto Western Circuit 2011
AY Race Report 4 & Summary

Mixed fortunes determine final outcome...
By AsianYachting MultiMedia

August 20th: The day started off with an uncharacteristic light Southerly land breeze, that clocked around to the South West and ended with a heavy rainstorm descending on the fleet from the Malaysian side of the Johore Strait. A mixture of courses ranging from windward/leeward, triangular and passage races were devised to finish the event. Some Multihull crews lost their bearings and sailed the wrong course, while others lost their footing and were catapulted over the side to suffer minor injuries. Depending what courses the classes sailed they had to contend with different wind direction and strength, which played a big part in determining the overall outcome. At one stage two converging boats with spinnakers up sailed past each other within five meters and kept on going like nothing had happened.

Arch rivals in the IRC A class Bill Bremner's Ker 32 Foxy Lady V and Sarab Jeet Singh's Sydney 40 MOD Windsikher split tacks up the first leg with Foxy Lady V playing the wind shifts slightly offshore and Windsikher preferring to stay inshore, out of the current but in lighter airs. As they approached the top mark a welcome gust came from the land and propelled Windsikher around first and they charged off down current. Half way up the second leg the breeze swung 180 degrees turning it into a windward beat and allowing the fleet to catch up with the leader. By the time the race committee decided to shorten the race Windsikher crossed first but Foxy Lady V and Brent Morgans Archambault 35 Men at Work were close behind to take first and second respectively on handicap and relegated Windsikher to third. Bill Bremner's Foxy Lady V regained first overall with one race to go. As the yachts maneuvered between the tankers and cargo ships at anchorage, the final passage Race 8 turned into a lottery with the fading wind and strong incoming current hindering their progress. Once again, Race officer Richard Cai had no option other that to shorten the race and this time Chris Furness / Guz Wilkinson's Rikki Tikki Tavi came to the fore in front of Herman Van Den Wall Bake's Esse 850 IMP. As Foxy Lady V and Windsikher finished down in fifth and sixth respectively this became their drop race and Foxy Lady V went on to claim the title on their first outing in anger on the newly acquired yacht.

As the passage race last week was abandoned for the IRC B class, the decision was made to re-run the double scoring non drop able race. This time Dickon Addis' Esse 850 Roo 2 picked the right path through a minefield of changing wind to go on and take first and fastest. Simon Piff's Lavranos 34 Rainbow Dream came good to take second place. After rounding the furthermost channel mark in last spot the overall leader Fidelis Tan's Platu 25 SMUmad benefited from the incoming storm and under spinnaker sailed straight down the middle of the course to slip into third spot and take the overall victory. Gregory Ho's Platu 25 SMUve, held a commanding lead over their SMU counterparts and looked as if they had the title in the bag but after a long work close to the coast they missed out on the incoming breeze and got completely rolled by the whole fleet. Out of sheer frustration they did not finish and dropped down to fourth overall. This decision allowed Dickon Addis' Roo 2 and Benjamin Mui Jie Min's Cork 1720 Xtra SMUve to jump up into second and third overall.

All five J24's raced around the course in close company and changed places on several occasions but at the end of the day it was John Horsburgh's Jock that triumphed in both races and went on to secure the title. Second and third places were distributed between Winfrid Wong Wing On's Jangan Main Main and Remy Donraadt's Shengli but Goh Jian Guang's Juno has done enough in earlier races to hold onto second overall. This move cut short Remy Donraadt's fast advancing Shengli in third overall and left wondering what could have been if they competed on the first day.

After Desmond Seah's Oslon 911 Arbubhen was the only finisher in the double points, non drop passage race last weekend, they leap froged from fourth overall onto the top of the table. Today they went out full of confidence and decimated the fleet in the first race and despite pulling up in last place in the second race they secured the Club Racer Class on their first attempt. Previous leader Barry Hayes' Hustler SJ35 Sumatra, retaliated with second and first places but the damage was already done and had to settle on second overall. Similar story for Tobias Arnold's Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 37 No Alibi and Christopher Nunns Cheoy Lee Offshore 40 Velera Linda, who traded third places and ended up third and fourth overall.

In the Moth Class, James Cole has shown his experience and superior foiling technique on the Mach 2 Ricochet around the course, to win all ten races and become the only boat in the entire fleet to keep a clean score sheet. Three second places today for Paul Runyan's Slingshot lifts him to second overall and relegates Dan Ward's THFC down into third overall.

Mixed emotions in the Multihull Class. After four yachts went walkabout on the wrong course in the double points non drop passage race, this left the door open for Martin Pickrodt's Nacra Carbon 20 Astro Boy to take advantage of the early breeze and win the race, plus score third place in the second race to hold onto second overall. Despite their excursion in the first race Scott Mc Cook's Corsair 750 The Dash made up for it by winning the last race but alas were punished heavily and dropped to fifth overall. At the end of the day the smallest boat in the nine strong fleet and the run away leader since scoring five wins in a row Nicolas Gillier / Jeremy Perrier F16 Isdoo second and fourth today secured them the title by a country mile. Uli Braun's Yabbadabbadoo came out of no where with third and second places to take over third overall. DR Michael Chia must be commended at 82 years old can still skipper his Nacra Carbon 20 Xng Kao Kaochap around the course at break neck speed and still can pick up the occasional win and podium places.

After completing nine races it was decided the SB3 Class would have a final shootout on the double scoring non drop passage race which ended in controversy. Three boats were disqualified for not rounding a mark which left the way for the protestor Jonathan Mahony's bunch on Scumbag to win the race and clamber back into third overall. Despite being disqualified and having to carry the double pointscore Nils Razmilovich / Jeremy Chase Glasgow Kiss have won seven out of nine races and still 10 points clear to go on and clinch the title. By keeping their nose clean and pulling up in fourth place today Sean Cox / Bill Lydens Katana hold onto second overall.

WOW! After three weekends of racing, often in tricky conditions the party is still going strong. Not only is this event a good test of endurance both on and off the water but it is a testament for SMU students organisational abilities and the sailors generosity by raising much needed funds for
Singapore Sailability. Over S$20k has been raised either by personal donations and auctioning valuable goods and services to go towards new boats and send Asian champion Jovin Tan to the Para-Olympics next year. The President of the Singapore Management University described how the voluntary nature and team working skills that sailing brings is inline with the values that they instill into the students. With the youthful enthusiasm of the SMU organising team, this regatta has a bright future and will remain the premier event on Singapore's racing calendar.

Analyze the classes and yachts race by race performance at: TackTracker or take a look at the daily Photo Galleries by Danny Ng, Eric Loh & Shufen

Final results at: http://www.westerncircuit.com/

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