Clear blue skies and 8 to 10 knots north easterly breeze greeted the sailors on Day One of racing. Some may have been a little late arriving at the starting area, especially after dancing the night away at last nights welcoming party at the Kata Beach Resort. The race officers selected passage courses that took the fleet around the southern tip of Phuket and beat up the east coast to round either Ko Hi, Ko Aeo or the Safe Water Mark into Phuket Harbour before returning on a long downwind slide and reaching to the finish off Kata beach. Freshening breezes on the east coast had the racing boats making quick work of the course and most boats finished by three in the afternoon. Unfortunately for the slower cruising classes the breeze died out in the afternoon leaving them to struggle for the finish line.
At 75 foot in length Frank Pong's Jelik enjoys a long beat to windward and even more a long downwind slide to cover the thirty one mile course in three hours and twenty five minutes. This earned them a resounding first and fastest on race 1 and a good confidence boost early in the proceedings. Fred Kinmonth / Nick Burns Mills 51 Fortis Mandrake followed thirty six minutes latter to clinch second place in front of a fast finishing Ray Roberts on Quantum Racing slightly over a minute behind on corrected time. Stephen Reith's Sydney 40 Foxy Lady III drifted off during the night and was found this morning five miles offshore by the Thai Navy making them unable to compete.
Scott Duncanson's Phuket 8 now renamed Raimon Land left the rest of the sportsboat fleet in their wake. Finishing thirty eight minutes in front of the next boat gives them first and fastest plus a good start to the regatta. Not to be out done Kevin Scott's The Weasel was the best of the Platu 25's to score second place. Japans Keisuke Nagamatsu on Platu 114 followed close behind to fill third place.
Provisionally Pena Trungkabunchar's Lawana was awarded the win in Premier Cruising. A protest was lodged that they did not sail the correct course which would result in Jon Wardill's second placed Australian Maid being elevated to first place. Despite winning many other regional regattas Peter Cremers Shahtoosh first attempt at the King's Cup has resulted in third place. A last minute reprieve for Geoff Hill's Strewth to stay in the Premier class gives them fourth place which may improve if the protest is upheld.
Firefly One design
Bill Phelps on Twin Sharks was quick of the startline and established a handy lead by the first turning mark. Closely followed by Chris Jongerius on The Frog. Henry Kaye's Mamba and Roger Kingdon's Moto Inzi had there work cut out but got down to it and by the time they reached Ko Hi they had closed the gap on the leaders. After multiple gybes down the long back strait and reaching to the finish it was Henry Kaye's Mamba that crossed the line first but for technical reasons choose to withdraw from the race. Seventeen seconds latter Bill Phelps steered Twin Sharks across the line and rightfully reclaimed first place. Roger Kingdon skillfully sailed Moto Inzi downwind to bounce back into second place. Chris Jongerius on The Frog stayed on the pace to score third place.
Steve Manning had the pedal to the metal on his new Beneteau 44.7's Walawala to secure first place. Sail in Asia's Farr 43 Switchblade had a good run amongst the leaders to slot into second place after missing out on first place by a mere fourteen seconds. Bill Hamlen's suspiciously named Tropical Beaver stayed on the pace to finish third and keep the Beneteau designs amongst the front runners.
Peter Dyer's Madame Butterfly continued on their winning ways to score first place and start the regatta where they finished off last year. Stuart Williamson's brand new Beneteau 34.7 Skandia has quickly established a place at the top of the order with second place today. Fresh from a win at the Raja Muda Regatta two weeks ago Hellmut Schutte's Elan 340 Aquavit IV managed to squeeze into third spot as the breeze died out on the reach to the finish.
American Fredrick Roswold's classic IOR racer Wings reveled in the upwind conditions to claim first place with style. Dr Basil Diethelm's Swan 44 Sarabande smooth lines gracefully sailed into second place. Larry Emerson S&S 42 Remington kept the boats with good pedigree in the winning circle with third place.
The race of princesses in Sunsail Sun Odyssey 35's has resulted in Princess Anna 1st, Princess Sharda 2nd, Princess Athena 3rd. At the time of going to press all the boats are registered under Sunsail Thailand instead of the charterers name.
Elite Yachting's Atlantic 44 Amadeus stuck to their name sake with first place amongst the elite yachts. At thirty feet Asia Marine's Fidji must be the smallest boat in the class but managed second place in front of her much bigger rivals. RKV Engineering Consultants Oceanis 343 Tarawadee 2 closed in on the leaders in the latter stages to score third place.
Having won several King's Cups before Khun Radab's Cedar Swan got their 2007 campaign off to a good start with first place. Tim Milner's Seekronghuk scorched around the course with the leaders to hold onto second place. Dave Wales much smaller Cosair trimaran The Sting put in a good performance to score third place.
Larry Pollock's Running Cloud finished a whopping eighteen minutes in front of the opposition to claim first place. Bob Mott's newly painted Chameleon supporting the sponsors logo smartly stepped into second place. Aussie Don McGrath's Oram 44 Cat Out of the Bag higher handicap relegated them back to third place.
All positions are provisional and based on the results at the time of going to press.
More KC 07 info and results at www.kingscup.com
Photo Edition of the AY Race Reports at: http://asianyachting.com/news/PKCR07.htm.