Thursday, March 20, 2008

Rolex China Sea Race

IRC Racing Division start

HI FI (HKG), IRC Racing Division start

FULL METAL JACKET (NZL), skipper Chris Meads Photos by: Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi
[Regatta News] There can't be a more exciting location to start a race than Hong Kong's Victoria Harbour: with local sampans, ferry boats, cruise ships, and steady stream of tug and barges to contend with in the narrow channel, it's not for the timid. The weather gods cooperated today, providing an easterly breeze of 15 -18 knots at the race start. The 24-boat fleet beat fairly quickly out the harbour, in front of the downtown skyscrapers, past the fishing village at Lei Yue Mun and the shoreside shrines, across Junk Bay, and out past the Po Toi islands into the South China Sea.

In the Racing Division, Neil Pryde's newly modified Hi Fi (HKG), with it's distinctive flared deck aft, was early at the pin end of the start line, but gybed around to restart and was quickly back at the head of the fleet with the other 50-footers. In fact, out through Junk Bay, the 2006 race winner Fortis Mandrake (HKG) and the TP52s, Geoff Hill's Strewth (AUS), a nd Sam Chan's Ffreefire (HKG), were closely grouped together, crossing tacks. Read more...