Stunning topography greets sailors on Bay Regatta’s third day 

Windy and wavy from the get-go, PRO Simon James staged two different starts (for the mono-and-multihulls) and set two different courses for the third day of the 2019 Bay Regatta. The Racing and Multihull class were off on the longer 24NM course, while the two Cruising classes and the Bareboats hit the 17NM course: all finished off of Krabi’s Ao Nang Beach. 

The six-boat Racing Class saw Megazip zip through the stunning karst topography finishing first in both elapsed and corrected time. Aquari was second and East Marine Emagine was third (though positions flipflopped on elapsed time) with Jessandra II, Uminoko, and Ramrod following in that order.

Brandon Roscoe's Lola took first place from Hong Kong, took Cruising A honors today despite finishing half-a-second behind Paul Merry's Night Train on elapsed time. Hellmut Schutte's Aquavit 6 was in third though Hellmut's and Sand Grouper, Winds of Change and Linda rounded out the six-boat class in that order.   

In the Cruising B class, Niels Degenkolw’s beat the Gillow’s Poco across the line by a half-an-hour them in this six-boat class while Vladislav Belosheikin Sail in Asia’s Pinocchio was third of the day followed byTristram Denyer’s Iseulta was fourth while Mig Wehlie’s Aqua, with baby in tow, did not start today and Sergei Kataev’s Hope did not finish. 

Taking line honours for the third straight day with a time of 02:06:43 (corrected time was 02:09:00) Fugazi romped home to another victory in the Multihull Class. Asia Catamarans Phantom was next up, closely followed by Blue Nose. Twister 2 was fourth and Ray Waldron’s Surf Patrol did not finish.   

The Bareboat Class saw Russians finish one, two, and four with Russell Waddy's AllSail Tonicola sneaking into third. Konstantin Nazarenko's Kinnock was first, Stanislav Pechenkin's Venture was second and Denis Aksenov Uhuru had a DNF.   

The Bay Regatta was founded by a photographer (John Everingham) and friends (Chris Schaefer and Andy Stephens). Everingham, a long-time Phuket King’s Cup Regatta committee member, was motivated in part by frustration at the annual struggle over setting that regatta’s courses. On the one hand, he wanted to shoot the fleet of sails contrasted against the dramatic scenery. The hard-core sailors, on the other hand, wanted their boats as far away from land as possible to avoid fickle winds. Dramatic photos would attract more sponsors, argued the photographer; but the sailors always won. So the stymied lensman rounded up some like-minded friends and established a regatta designed to sail among the dramatic limestone island towers and mainland forests off Phuket’s east coast. The problem was that the courses would go too deep into the Bay, where the wind didn’t blow. So. when the Ao Chalong Yacht Club (now the Phuket Yacht Club) gained control over the regatta a couple years back a compromise was worked out between beautiful scenery and good sailing courses.

The ACYC, and its volunteer board, however, felt it could not properly run the regatta properly, so five years ago it was handed over to “Mr. Regatta” himself, Simon James of Regattas Asia. Simon, who aside from being the PRO of the Regatta for many years, had also been one of its principle organizers along with his partner Kae Wattana, so they knew exactly what they were getting into. 

Of note. as Twin Sharks had to pull out of the regatta on the first day, a couple of its crew found new homes: Jason Corall with Phantom and Alfie Rowson with Jessandra II. 

A special shout-out to both Brent McInnes and Bob Mott; the former supplied the photography boat while the latter supplied the mark boat and Rainman waterproof bags for all the skippers.