07 December 2010, PHUKET – The second day of racing at the 2010 Phuket King’s Cup Regatta saw a slight increase in wind which prompted the race officer to send almost all of the fleets on round the island courses. Whereas the opening day consisted of a series of sprints day two was more of a marathon with the majority of races lasting in excess of three hours.
Action in the IRC 2 class is hotting up with Team Sea Bees and the Royal Thai Navy boats once again leading the way. Some things may have changed, last year Team Sea Bees was named Madame Butterfly and skippered by Peter Dyer, but the rivalry between these boats has survived intact. Jamie Watts is in charge of Team Sea Bees and is hoping to go one better than his predecessor who missed out at last year’s Regatta after a nail-biting final day’s racing.
CPO.1 Wiwat Poonpat on Royal Thai Navy 1 was the main winner that day but he had to settle for third place today. At the end of a grueling four hour race Team Sea Bees emerged victorious with less than 90 seconds to spare. Hot on their tails was Cdr. Pornprom Sakultem’s Royal Thai Navy 4 with Royal Thai Navy 1 only a few minutes behind. This division traditionally provides some of the most closely contested racing and this year looks set to be no exception.
Despite not being skipper Dyer is once again involved as the tactician. He is relishing the opportunity to lock horns with his old rivals in the Royal Thai Navy,
“Someone else was going to be sailing the boat and it wasn’t until the last minute I realized I would be involved. It would have been difficult to stand on the sidelines, particularly if the boat hadn’t performed, and I’m delighted to be getting to race. It was a very close race today in light airs which made it important to be on the right part of the course at the right time,” he said
A clear leader is starting to emerge in the Premier Class with Peter Forsythe and Jing Lee’s Xena winning two races out of two. The top three has been identical in both of the opening two races with Peter Sorenson’s Baby Tonga consistently finishing second and Jon Wardill’s Australian Maid repeatedly coming third.
Ray Roberts’ Evolution Racing made a slow start in the Racing Class, finishing fourth in the opening race, but is back on track after winning the next three races. Competition normally comes in the shape of Neil Pryde’s Hi Fi which secured a second place finish in today’s race and remains second in the rankings. Evolution Racing is by no means out of sight but Hi Fi will be desperate to get back to winning ways tomorrow with points for the prestigious Asian Yachting Grand Prix at stake.
In the Firefly 850 class John Newnham’s Twin Sharks ended Hans Rahmann’s Voodoo’s chances of scoring a clean sweep. Voodoo claimed three bullets in the opening three races but last year’s winner Twin Sharks bounced back to emerge victorious in race four. With Voodoo enjoying a slight series lead this is another class set be extremely competitive.
David Liddell’s Miss Saigon took honours in the Multihull class ahead of King’s Cup veteran Radab Kanjanavanit on KT-ZMICO Cedar Swan. Series leader Andy Pape on Da Vinci came in third while Fergus Wilmer and Henry Kaye’s Thor endured a difficult day and could only manage a 10th place finish.
The first King’s Cup took place in 1987 to mark the 60th birthday of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyedej and the Regatta has been held in the first week of December ever since.
The Phuket King’s Cup Regatta runs from December 4th – 11th 2010 under the Royal Patronage of His Majesty the King. The Regatta is organized by the Phuket King’s Cup Regatta Organizing Committee under the auspices of the Royal Varuna Yacht Club, in conjunction with the Yacht Racing Association of Thailand, the Royal Thai Navy and the Province of Phuket.
Sponsors of the 2010 Phuket King’s Cup Regatta include Kata Group Resorts Thailand, Siam Winery, Chang Beer, Kata Rocks, Centara Grand Beach Resort Phuket, Mom Tri’s Boathouse and The Moorings. Media Partners include Blue Wave 90.5FM, Helm Superyacht Asia Pacific, Helicam Asia, Indigo Media, Multihull World, The Nation, Phuket Gazette, Prestige Thailand, Sail-World.com and YACHTstyle.