Strong winds greet racers for start of 19th Bay Regatta

Four divisions of six boats—Racing, Cruising A & B and Bareboats-combined with eight boats in the Multihull class to form the fleet for the 2016 Bay Regatta.

On the Regatta’s first day, Liz Schoch’s Fargo Ladies Team took first place in the Racing Class followed by Scott Bradley’s Emagine & Aleksandr Trofimenko’s Megazip. Neils Degenklow’ Phoenix, Mick Tilden’s Fujin and Kevin Scott’s Team Ferret rounded out the racing class finishers in that order.

Liz performed amazingly well at the recent Phuket King’s Cup Regatta winning the Corsair Division and *Fujin, *a Beneteau 44.7, is topping the leader-board in Captain Marty’s Asian Yachting Grand Prix series.

Cruising A saw long-time Bay Regatta Jim Ellis’ Remington take top spot from Tony Bynes Mohawk & Woodrow Christenson’s *Linda *with Chris Mitchell’s Lady Bubbly Audrey Arbuzov’s Thaiassa & Dick Norris’ Salina finishing out the racing in this class.

Cruising B saw the Gillows on Poco continue their amazing Bay Regatta run with Ket Mangklaeseranee’s Tongfah finishing second and Mig Wehlre’s *Aqua coming in third. Djkanov Sergei’s *Rate was fourth with Cedic Remaud’s Selma fifth & Paul Knight’s Sanook *sixth.*

The Bareboat Class saw top honours go to Papasha Grizly helmed by Igor Skvortcov; second was Little Eva skipped by Stanislav Pechenkin and third spot was Allsail Isabella helmed by Russell Waddy. Fourth spot went to Igor Llin’s Kinon with Allan Bower’s Allsail Uhuru in fifth & Olof Thoren’s Sulmalee in sixth.

In the Multihulls, Hans Rahmann Voodoo came first, John Newnham’s *Twin Sharks* second, Mick Coleman’s Java third with Kiril Stashevskly’s Galeforce coming fourth, Alan Cawardine’s *Asia Catamarans Hurricane *fifth, George Edding’s Blue Noze in sixth, David Lidell’ Wow in seventh and Mark Horwood’s Adrenaline in eighth place.

Three Fireflies, competing in the multihull class also formed their own class with Voodoo, Twin Sharks & Blue Noze finishing one, two & three today, and Voodoo claiming line honours for all boats day.

There was a slight hiccup on the water today with the pin boat having trouble setting a mark near Koh Yai because of strong winds; the first five boats went past the said mark searching for the buoy, then using the GPS given, sailed past and continued on their way.

Today’s race started at Koh Naka Yai as the participants sailed north leaving Koh Phanak and Koh Na Ka Ya to port before rounding the first mark, northeast of Koh Yai, to starboard and then heading towards Koh Yao Noi leaving Hin Mot Daeng to port and Koh Batang to starboard before finishing off of Koh Kudu Yai – approximately 17 nautical miles in length.

It was heartwarming to see the Gillows racing through the water on Poco again, the boat that first brought them to Thailand two decades ago. Last year, they won their division with Kevin helming nine months after suffering a severe stoke.

Participants gathered at the Paradise Koh Yao Beach Resort & Spa on Koh Yao Noi for the evening’s party and prize-giving. The Chandara Resort & Spa in Ao Po hosted the opening-night party.

The regatta was started by the Ao Chalong Yacht Club and then taken over by John Everingham and his crew at Artasia for a number of years before reverting back to the stewardship of the ACYC (now the Phuket Yacht Club), who then turned it over to the very capable hands of Simon James and Kae Wattana whose company Regattas Asia have done a great job of running the event the last four years.