The Tomes Cup, which was held on Hong Kong’s Victoria Harbour on Saturday Jan 12, was the third race in the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club’s Top Dog Series. Swedish Blue won the race; but Ambush, while coming fifth, remains at the top of the series’ rankings.
All races in the series are pursuit races with boats starting at different times according to their handicaps. Previous races in the series were the Lipton Trophy, and the Round the Island Race and with only one race remaining—HKRNVR Vase on Mar 2—the series is hotting up for its grand finale.
Prior to the start of the race The Epoch Times had the pleasure of talking with Mr F.H. Lee the oldest sailor in the race.
“This is one of my favourite pastimes, I sail once a week on Saturdays or sometimes on Sundays” he said sitting at the tiller of his cruiser,” said Lee who will be 90 next year and has been sailing for 40 years.
“I started out too late to do some of the bigger races like the China Sea Race” added Mr Lee who worked as a ship builder.
“I am a Naval Architect, you know Tai Koo Dock at Tai Koo Shing? I used to work there. I used to build ships there. I was the shipbuilding Manager, but I left it in 1966 a long time ago. So I enjoy the boats now,” he explained.
The Epoch Times also talked with Ben Lau the owner/skipper of Gearbox.
“I have been sailing for more than 10 years, not too long. Actually I am not a sailor, I learned it in Hong Kong and sailed starting from Dinghy and then moved onto yachts and used to race this is my second,” Lau said looking at his brand new X-99.
Sixty-four boats took part in the Tomes Cup, over a combination of triangular and sausage shaped courses in the Harbour Sailing Area with some of the big boats required to round a mark at Tai Koo Shing.
The start of the race was delayed through lack of wind, but later the breeze picked up to five knots and some good sailing took place.
Most of the sailing progressed smoothly but Red Kite (not to be confused with Red Kite II) had a problem during the course of the race when she got too close to Dock Buoy and her rudder got caught in the buoy’s tethering rope. The crew had quite a job freeing before continuing the race.
At the start of this race, the leading boats in the Top Dog Series after two races were Ambush, followed by Peninsula Signal 8, Tchaikoffsky (a Flying 15 that won the Round the Island Race), Red Kite II, and Gunga Din (Etchells). All of these boats competed and did well in the Tomes Cup with the exception of the Tchaikoffsky that finished in 28th place, which has now put her down the order to sixth place.
Two Etchells, Swedish Blue and Easy Tiger, finished Tomes Cup first and second respectively, followed by Peninsula Signal 8, Red Kite II, and Ambush. After taking these results into account Ambush still leads the Top Dog Series rankings followed by Peninsula Signal 8, Red Kite II, Gunga Din and Easy Tiger now in fifth place.
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