Variable Conditions Provide Good Racing Test

Yachting—Port Shelter Regatta
By Bill Cox
Bill Cox
Bill Cox
September 12, 2014 Updated: September 12, 2014

HONG KONG—The HHYC Sails East Port Shelter Regatta held on Saturday Sept 6 and Sunday Sept 7 brings to a close a 14-week summer season of yachting organised by the Hebe Haven Yacht Club which commenced on June 8. The season comprised the Summer Saturday Series and the Typhoon Series capped off by last weekend’s Port Shelter Regatta event providing yacht racing enjoyment for a total of 98 boats.

The Port Shelter Regatta attracted 36 entries separated into 4-classes: IRC-A, IRC-B, Sports Boats and HKPN and comprised 3-Races, 2-Geometric Races on Saturday and an Islands Race on Sunday.

There was a moderate wind of about 7 knots on Saturday but conditions became quite rough for the Islands Race on Sunday with winds of 15 to 20 knots.

“Jelik” took home 3-Line Honours awards and the overall Regatta first prize for IRC-A boats with 6-points. The IRC-B Typhoon Series winner “Mojito” took 2nd place with 8-points and “Elektra” was 3rd on 10-points.

“EFG Mandrake” who only took part on Sunday won the Islands Race on corrected time.

“Talkinghead” topped the IRC-B Category with 2-Line Honours awards and the overall Regatta win with 7-points, “Dexter II” recorded a Line Honours win in Race-2 and came 2nd on count-back on corrected time with “Calamansi”, placed 3rd, both finishing on 10-points. Gaston Chan of “Calamansi” was in a strong position at the start of Day-2 but explained that the windy conditions and lumpy sea favoured the bigger, heavier boats. With his light weight crew he had to reduce sail to keep the boat upright and hence lost speed. He commented that he had never seen so many crew on “Mandrake” (1st in the IRC-A islands race) and added that longer boats went through the water better. That was certainly true of Jelik who was seen steaming downwind at high knots.

Sports Boats
After two wins on Day-1 of the Regatta “Merlin” looked like she would scoop the Sports Boat Regatta prize without difficulty but the high winds and a lightweight crew contributed to “Merlin” finishing in 3rd place in the islands race behind, “FreeFire 69 It’s My Pleasure” and “Good Vibrations”.

“FreeFire 69”, “Good Vibrations” and “Merlin” were in close contention at their first visit to the Bay Island Mark on Day-2 of the event but “Merlin” lost ground on the second circuit to make the finishing order “FreeFire 69”, “Good Vibrations” 2nd and “Merlin” 3rd.

“Red Herring II” had a good lead as she rounded Bay Island Mark the second time and set off for home but she retired after realising she had taken a banned short-cut.

This put “FreeFire 69” and “Merlin” equal on 6-points for the Regatta with “Good Vibrations” on 9-points in 3rd position. “Merlin” retained 1st place on count-back but “Merlin” Skipper Steve Bourne explained that they were fortunate in that the rules changed a few years ago and under the old rule “FreeFire 69” would have won.

A dead heat on corrected time between “Eclipse” and “Ichiban” in Race-3 made no difference to the overall Regatta Result in the HKPN Division. “Eclipse” took the overall win with 6.5-points with “Ichiban” 2nd on 9.5-points and “No One Else” came 3rd with 11-points.

“Bits and Pieces” came 1st in Race-1, “GA” topped the field in Race-2 but they could not maintain winning form finishing 5th and 4th respectively in the overall standings.

Bill Cox