Champagne sailing conditions greeted participants for the sixth annual Sailor’s Regatta, organized by the Phuket Yacht Club. The regatta took place from Friday March 24th – Sunday March 26th with six boats competing in the multihull class & three in the monohull class. Hans Rahmann’s Voodoo win the coveted six-boat multihull class and Niels Degenkolw’s Phoenix win the three-boat monohull class.

On the final day, PRO Matt McGrath repeated the racing sequence of the first day sailing two windward-leewards for both classes - starts five minutes apart - on course two, heading out from the middle of Chalong Bay in the direction of Ao Yon and the Cape Panwa channel marker.

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Voodoo, skippered by Ian Coulson with Jojo Tayong (tactician & bow), John Santos (mast) and Jed Jennings (trimmer) and Twin Sharks usually duke it out with Twin Sharks prevailing in the local regattas, but not this time around as it was all Voodoo as they sailed spectacularly winning three of the five races in the series.

Dirk Wieblen’s No Fear took third overall (line honours in round-the-island race on day two) in the six-boat multihull class. Andrew McDermott’s Trident placed fourth (they won race three), Bill Kane’s The Sting placed fifth with Dao Fidock’s Saffron rounded out the class.

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Trident certainly turned heads on day two. Andrew McDermott, if you recall, used to sail a primarily female team on his old boat Jessandra II and he brought three of those crewmates along (his wife Mook, Lies Sol and Katie Bimson) on his new Corsair. They bonded quite well and beat the heavily favoured Fireflies to take the multihull class in the round-the-island race.

Niels Degenkolw’s seems to own the waters around Ao Chalong as his boat Phoenix won all five races. Indeed, probably no sailor has won races in these waters than Nils. Aliaksandre Racheuski’s Uminoko beat out Thomas Valentin’s Brisk for second spot in every race in the three-boat monohull class, except race three.

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There was tension between Phoenix and Uminoko throughout the regatta especially at the start line where they jockeyed for position and seemed to mirror each other’s movements. This came to head when they bumped each other at the start of the second race on the final day near the start pin. Phoenix protested as there was some damage to her boat.

The prize giving and awards dinner took place at the Phuket Yacht Club with James Haste, who sailed on Saffron for this regatta, doing his usual stellar job as MC.

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The fairer sex was well represented at the regatta with a number of female competitors sailing on Phoenix, Trident and Uminoko and PYC sailing coach Garfield helped out with the results. A big round of applause to Khun Jeab and her team for their hospitality in keeping all the sailors fed and making sure their thirst was quenched.

This “no frills” regatta continues to be popular with local sailors. There are no t-shirts, caps or goody bags handed out and the only dinner is given on the final night at the awards presentation. But the cost of entering is much cheaper than other regional regattas giving the sailors more dosh to spend on other things.

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The Phuket Yachting Celestial Bar, filled with the likes of Tony Knight, Mark Horwood, Captain Marty Rijkuris, and many more, could be heard whispering praise and criticism on high as the fleet made its made through the waters of southern Phuket.

And, btw, a big thank you to Andy Hamilton for supplying and driving the photography boat.

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