With typhoons raging over Taiwan and East China causing huge devastation and loss of life, Hong Kong was lucky to get in another day of perfect sailing for Race-5 and -6 of the Hebe Haven Yacht Club Nautica Typhoon Series on Sunday July 14.
There was some doubt in the mind of Race Officer Inge Strompf-Jebsen as to whether the winds would be too strong for the races outside Port Shelter, the designated location for the two geometric course races, but she decided to go ahead—and it proved to be a good decision.
Winds of up to 17 knots, at the start of the races, waned as the afternoon progressed, but there was still ample breeze to test the competitors.
A total of 72 boats turned out for the two races, with about 20 boats in each of classes IRC-A, IRC-B and HKPN, and a further 13 boats taking part in IRC-C and Sports Boat classes.
There was frantic activity and a great deal of shouting between crew members with 20-plus competitors starting in each of the four starts for each race—except for Sports Boats with only 7.
With so many boats competing for race positions on the course, boats had to be ready to change direction and take evasive action to avoid other competitors. This was particularly so at the top and bottom marks, where there was a lot of jockeying for positions.
“FreeFire” took line honours in both of the IRC-A races and picked up fourth and second places, respectively, in Races-5 and -6 on corrected time.
“Signal 8”, “Ambush”” and “Mandrake” took the first three places, respectively, in Race-5, while “Mojito”, “FreeFire and “Mandrake” took the first three places, respectively in Race-6.
There was great excitement at the start of Race-6 as many boats crossed the line ahead of the start gun. There was a general recall and the race was re-started after all the other boat classes were on their way. The second start was clean.
After six races of this nine race series, and taking the current one-race discard into account, “Mandrake” leads the standings on 10 points. “Ambush” (12 points), “Signal 8” (16), “Mojito” (20) and “FreeFire” (26) take the next four places, respectively.
“Red Kite II” continued her domination of the IRC-B class by winning both of the races.
“Vixen” took second place in Race-5 and third place in Race-6, while “Gearbox” took the reverse positions in those races.
“Red Kite II” stays firmly at the top of the series standings on six points (net) with “Vixen” (11) second, “Whiskey Jack” (13) third, “Gearbox” (20) fourth and “Dexter II” (25) fifth.
“Impala I”, who had won all four races prior to Race Day-4, dropped a few points in these two IRC-C races coming in fifth and third.
Also Can, showed she can, by taking first place in Race-5, with “Taxi” in second place and “Boss Hogg” third.
“Taxi” won Race-6 from “Boss Hogg” and “Impala I”.
“Impala” I still leads the series with seven points (net), with “Taxi” second (11) and “Boss Hogg” (15) has moved into third place, just ahead of “Moll” (16).
Although Bits & Pieces took line honours in both HKPN races, she finished well down the order on corrected time taking two thirteenth places.
Dea II secured a double first on corrected time.
In Race-5, “Jil Jik”, “Zazz” and Scintilla” took the next three places, respectively. “No One Else, “GA” and “Ex-Libris” took second, third and fourth places, respectively, in Race-6.
“Dea II” moved up into first place in the series standings with 17 points (net), “Ex Libris” (21) is second points and “Scintilla” (22) has dropped to third place. “GA” is close behind on 23 points.
“FreeFire” It’s My Pleasure” returned to racing after missing Race Day-3, but could not repeat her Race Day-2 Sports Boats class winning performance. However, she still came in second in Race-6.
“Merlin” was also beaten to the punch in these two races coming in with two third places.
“Fly By Wire” was Sports Boat of the day, winning both of the races.
“Sidewinder” took second place in Race-5, but was pushed back to sixth place in Race 6.
Steve Bourne in “Merlin” still leads the overall standings on 10 points (net), but with the wins in Races-5 and -6, Frank van Kempen in “Fly by Wire” jumped up to second place, just one point behind on 11.
“FreeFire It’s My Pleasure” is third on 17 points and R2B2 is in fourth place on 18 points.
The fourth race day of the Hebe Haven Quest Yachting Summer Saturday series is scheduled for this coming Saturday, July 20. The next race in the Nautica Typhoon Series is the Mires Bay passage race on July 27 and 28, while J80’s and Sports Boats have an Islands Race on Saturday July 27.