19th SMU-RM Western Circuit Sailing Regatta 2016

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AY Pre-Regatta Report

Sailors ready for challenging Western Circuit
By AsianYachting MultiMedia
August 12th: While the Rio Olympics make all the world headlines, club sailors left at home, are taking on their own challenge, at the 19th SMU-RM Western Circuit Sailing Regatta. Over the next two weekends (Aug 13, 14 & 20) Raffles Marina comes alive with a line-up of keelboats, multihull's, SB20, PY, Access 2.3's for disabled sailors and six Windsurfing classes. This event is Singapore's premier big boat event, full of youthful enthusiasm from the SMU organising team, combined with Raffles Marina excellent facilities, have built a reputation for lively fleet racing and fun filled post race parties. Up for grabs this weekend is, the SMU President’s Cup, SB20 International Cup and the Inter-Tertiary Windsurfing Championship (ITWC) 2016 titles.

This time of the year, competitors can expect anything from light, variable winds, to blustery dark storm cells, whipping up a frenzy, in the Western Johor Strait. Crew skills will be severely tested on demanding windward-leeward courses, to sail up to the boats IRC rating, in strong tidal currents and more so, on the long passage races.

Preferring long distance, offshore races, Jonathan Mahony's Humphries 42R Zanzibar returns to day racing in the IRC A class. They will be taking on Chris Furness Elan 410 Rikki Tikki Tavi and Esben Poulsson's light weight flyer ESSE 750 Petit Bateau looking to improve beyond third place last year. The vagaries of the wind and in strong tidal currents, anything can happen and usually does.

Five yachts in the IRC B class, are regulars on the Singapore scene and enjoy racing against each other, to see whose turn it is to win the title. SMU are fielding two Farr Platu 25's, crewed by students, Collin Lim's SMUve and Koh Ling Ying on SMUmad, are always in the running for podium places. The past couple of years, Kurt Metzger's Nelson 10 Waka Tere has settled on 2nd place and planning on going one better this time. Gordon Maxted's Young 840 Shoon Fung Too are always on the hunt and not to be taken lightly. Pascal Radue's X99 Born In Fire returns for another tilt at the title after last years debut.

The PY Class have bumped their numbers up, with seven cruiser/racers lugging the furniture around the course. They vary from the the smallest, Scott Lip's Maxi 77 Ambindi to Guy Scott's big Beneteau Sense 50 Confluence. Merry Andrew Paul's Hanse 415 Night Train is back to defend the title and Glen O'Grady's Young 88 O'Blueyes, dropping down a class, could turn into their nemesis. After a few years absence Michael Teo/Desmond Seah Oslon 911SE Arbudhen and Simon Connors Sapphire Star return to the frey. Low Chin Nam purchased the Cork 1770 at the charity auction last year and renamed her Xtra Mile and see if he can live up to the name.

In July, Singapore Sailing Federation (SSF) decided to use this year’s WCSR SB20 class, as a selection trial, for the ASAF Keelboat Cup 2016. This created a huge demand in SB20 entries but to the detriment of teams that used to race J24's like NTU, SP and NUS, have instead opted to sail in the SB20 class.

Jeremy Chase's Glasgow Kiss helmed by Aaron 'Capt Rehab' Taunt, returns to reclaim the SMU SB20 International Cup, that they narrowly missed out on last year to Anthony Klong, who aims to repeat the dose. There is 14 other hot shot teams, just as determined to put in a big performance and take home the title.

In the ever changing Multihull Class, three Corsair 750's, Andrew Young's Hot Toad, Deborah Barker's The Dash and Alice Lim's Corsair Dash FT, will be taking on the two Sprint Corsair's of Tim Hill's family run Cicak and Michael Chia's Eeepai. David Stanton's nippy M23 trimaran is the only non Corsair in the fleet and could spring a few surprises. They are all capable of exceptional bursts of speed but up against the clock in the handicap stakes.

Six Windsurfing classes divided by sail area, are in a competition between students from different schools in Singapore. Rounding out the numbers is a competitive fleet of Access 2.3's for disabled sailors. A charity auction to be held at the gala presentation dinner next weekend, to raise funds for Sailability Singapore, as part of a global initiative to enrich the lives of people living with physical disabilities.

If your in Singapore and looking for some thrills and spills over the next two weekends, take a drive down to Raffles Marina in Tuas and claim a spot on the breakwater overlooking the courses.

More info and results when they come to hand at: http://www.westerncircuit.com/
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