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Audi Hong Kong to Vietnam Race - Red Kite II aims to be a giant killer

by RHKYC / Guy Nowell on 3 Oct 2013
Rolex China Sea Race 2012 - Red Kite II RHKYC / Guy Nowell
The Red Kite II philosophy, says owner Anthony Root 'is to put together a mix of hard-driving, highly competitive and skilled sailors who are friends on and off the boat and work together as a collaborative and supportive team' and this is certainly no different as they prepare for the Audi Hong Kong to Vietnam race that starts on 17 October.

There will be seven crew on board the Archambault 35 owned by Anthony since 2009, including Kevin Peet, one of New Zealand’s top sailors. In the past, Kevin coached the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron junior sailing team, which won the RNZYS Youth Match Racing Regatta. Previous winners of the event include Jimmy Spithill. In recent years, Kevin was boat captain of Team Vodaphone, which campaigned an ORMA 60 trimaran, which was billed as 'the fastest boat in the southern hemisphere' and set many records.Notably, it beat the Volvo 70 Camper crewed by Emirates Team New Zealand in the 1,141 nautical mile Musket Cove Ocean Race. Kevin has participated in more than 20 Cat 1 races.

Red Kite II has participated in staggering 230 races since 2009, with 140 wins (61%) and 209 podium finishes (91%). She has won her division in all her offshore races (five races to the Philippines and one to Hainan). With fellow competitor Freefire, Red Kite II is one of only two boats to win the San Fernando Race twice in a row on IRC handicap. It is the only IRC boat in 50 years of the event to win its division in the Hebe Haven Yacht Club Typhoon Series five years in a row. It won its division in the China Coast Regatta in 2010, 2011 and 2012 and won its division in the China Coast Race Week Overall in 2012.

Anthony says of the Audi Hong Kong to Vietnam Race - ' this Race is all about which boat is able to surf and plane above its polars and IRC rating. Hull length will be a key advantage. So the TP52s are the best positioned to win, followed by the GTS 43, the HH 42 and the Ker 40s. The conditions should also favor a light carbon boat like the Anteros 36. Steady winds from the NE will result in a drag race with a minimum of tactical considerations. So a small boat like Red Kite II will be at a major disadvantage in this type of race.'

That said, Anthony adds, 'Red Kite II has a reputation of being a giant killer and has beaten professionally-crewed TP52s in both the 2009 and 2011 San Fernando races. Despite the inherent disadvantages of a small boat in this type of race, we are approaching this event like any other, with a goal to win Official Race Facebook page

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