Boats from Australia, Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and more to compete.
Asia’s top yachts have come together at the Thai tropical island of Samui to battle it out for the 14th Samui Regatta honours – the curtain-closing event of the prestigious 2014/15 AsianYachting Grand Prix championship. Held 23rd to 30th May off Chaweng Beach, Samui Regatta comprises five days of racing in the tropics with six nights of beachside parties.
The high calibre fleet includes many of Asia’s best. Some tight racing is expected in IRC 0 with Jelik (HKG), FreeFire (HKG), Oi! (AUS) and the former HiFi, Windsikher 2 (SIN), battling it out whilst the Regatta welcomes back a Premier Class after a few years hiatus with El Coyote (AUS), Lawana (THA), Uranus (MAS) and the all-new Spirit 65 (GBR) named Chloe Giselle headlining the class.
New to the Asian circuit, Chloe Giselle was the first Spirit 65 out of the UK shipyard and shipped to Asia to compete in the regional circuit. Designed as a performance orientated sailing sloop that combines classic lines with the use of modern materials and construction technology, the Spirit 65’ will be one to watch.
Hong Kong and Singapore entries dominate the “40-footer” class including EFG Mandrake (HKG), Siren (HKG), Blue Note (SIN), Foxy Lady VI (SIN), Fujin (AUS) and Jessandra II (RQ), who are competing for the IRC 1 honours, while in IRC 2 Thai boats Moon Shadow (THA), Windstar (THA) and Magic (THA) are up against the Swedish entry Amanda (SWE).
“The fleet is looking to be competitive and we are aware of some more boats that have not yet entered but will sail in for registration this weekend and join in the fun,” said Mr. Simon James, Race Director, Samui Regatta.
“Depending on final entries, we are considering dual scoring the IRC 2 class and possibly also the Premier Class with IRC and a performance-based handicap. This should prove interesting for the sailors and will keep them on their toes through some fair and competitive racing.”
Looking to defend their 2013/14 AsianYachting Grand Prix Skipper and Yacht of the Year crowns are Bill Bremner and his Foxy Lady VI. Baring a below par regatta, Foxy Lady VI look difficult to beat for Yacht of the Year while Bill Bremner, not at the helm of Foxy Lady VI during the recent Top of the Gulf Regatta, can still mathematically take the Skipper of the Year crown though he will have to outscore the Nick Burns/ Fred Kinmonth combination on EFG Mandrake.
The action onshore is expected to be equally frantic and fun.
Organisers have brought back the mid-week party which will be Hawaiian-themed and at KC Beach Club on Wednesday 27th May, allowing the sailors to let off some steam and relax the following day, which is the Reserve Day. On-the-beach prize-presentations take place each day after racing while the official Opening Party is at Zico’s Brazilian Restaurant & Bar on Sunday 24th May and the final party, prize-presentations and Gala Dinner is hosted by Centara Grand Beach Resort Samui on the resort’s lawns under the stars on Saturday 30th May.
The full event schedule can be viewed at samuiregatta.com