Please select your home edition
Edition
Southern Spars

China Club Challenge Match 2013 - stage 1 completed

by Al Skinner on 11 Oct 2013
China Club Challenge Match 2013 - Small wind, big tide. Black flag at the ready Al Skinner
It takes time for anything to grow and the China Club Challenge Match is no different.

The event started as a challenge between two embryonic Chinese sailing clubs, Ironrock Sailing Club in Xiamen and Zhuhai Sailing Club in two beat-up old J/24s, and over the years the event has grown.


Over the last few days in Xiamen the ninth edition has been sailed in a competitive and sportsmanlike manner better than ever before, with 30 teams locking horns in J/80s. The number of teams depending on retired athletes has gone down, and the female involvement has gone up with 20% of the boats being driven by the fairer sex – although judging by their competitiveness that is very much a relative term.

The event had everything: protests (valid!); general recalls; and even one or two black flags. Close competitive racing, yet very little in the way of ‘bumper cars’ that can sometimes be seen in regattas with borrowed boats.

The event was sailed in boats supplied by the organizers thanks to the support of Hudson Marine, with the boats being equalised and checked by Jim Johnstone (the name is no coincidence) who heads up J-Boats Asia.

With 20 boats and 30 teams it was necessary to split into two flights, both getting in seven races each over the three days of racing in conditions that ranged from a shortened course to genuine broaching weather, with the event finishing just ahead of Typhoon Fitou which hit the coast around 100 miles away not many hours after the noise of the prize-giving party died away.

The standard of sailing has certainly evolved and improved over the years I have been attending the event, with far more amateurs involved than the early days, and with some teams even being owner driven.

The Club Cup, as it is known, is the oldest keelboat regatta in China, pre-dating China Cup by a full year, and it has become the ‘must win’ event for many Chinese teams. This year, some were making their fourth or fifth attempt to have their name inscribed on the trophy, getting closer each time.

From the form shown in the first part of the event, the favourites heading towards the second knockout match racing phase must surely be Shanghai Airport Sailing Team which is primarily made up, as the name suggests, of employees and family from Shanghai’s airport workers sports club. They posted five bullets and two second places over their three days’ racing – not bad having a ‘2’ to discard!

So now the top 16 (eight from each flight) must go away, hone their boat handling skills further, and read up on the rules to be ready to re-join battle back down in Xiamen, 8-11 November. Will they be able to break last year’s record, when the race management team managed to get off 26 races in one day? In 2012, each match in the round of 16 went to the best-of-three decider, plus a couple of ‘exhibition’ races. Granted, it’s unlikely, given that one or two teams have shown themselves to be head and shoulders above the rest this year - but only time will tell.

T Clewring CruisingBakewell-White Yacht Designnavathome 660x82

Related Articles

Clipper Round the World Yacht Race - ETAs into Derry-Londonderry
The Clipper Race fleet is closing in on Derry-Londonderry ahead of the start of the Foyle Maritime Festival. The Clipper Race fleet is closing in on Derry-Londonderry ahead of the start of the Foyle Maritime Festival. The finish line to the LegenDerry Finale is approximately a three hour motor from Foyle Marina where the fleet will be berthed.
Posted today at 5:20 am
2016 TP52 Super Series – More action shots from Day 3 by Ingrid Abery
Photographer Ingrid Abery has provided this gallery of images from day three of Audi Settimana delle Bocche Photographer Ingrid Abery has provided this gallery of images from day three of Audi Settimana delle Bocche
Posted on 30 Jun
2016 TP52 Super Series – Day 3 images by Ingrid Abery
Photographer Ingrid Abery has provided this gallery of images from day three of Audi Settimana delle Bocche Photographer Ingrid Abery has provided this gallery of images from day three of Audi Settimana delle Bocche
Posted on 30 Jun
Azzurra remains in the top three at the Audi Settimana delle Bocche
The course was beautiful and short enough so that the windward/leeward race that had to be abandoned could be recovered. The third day of racing saw breezes kick in a bit late. The Racing Committee decided on a 12 nautical mile course that took the fleet from Porto Cervo to the Secca di Tre Monti between Sardinia and Caprera, and back.
Posted on 30 Jun
A fistful of winners at Audi Settimana delle Bocche Regatta
So far Bronenosec, Provezza, Azzurra and Quantum Racing have all led the table and the points remain extremely tight. So far Bronenosec, Provezza, Azzurra and Quantum Racing have all led the table and the points remain extremely tight. Quantum Racing, with Doug DeVos on the helm, achieved their own points goal for the day.
Posted on 30 Jun
2016 TP52 Super Series – Images from races four and five by Max Ranchi
Photographer Max Ranchi has provided this gallery of images from races four and five Photographer Max Ranchi has provided this gallery of images from races four and five
Posted on 30 Jun
GC32 Racing Tour – Can one town tip the scales for Armin Strom Team?
With a population of 6500, Kerikeri is known for rural surroundings, plentiful orchards and a true laid back Kiwi life Kerikeri, one of New Zealand’s most northernmost towns is where team manager Sharon Ferris-Choat, bowman Alex Bryning, boat captain Ned Dalbeth Hudson and two-time Kiwi Olympian Andrew Murdoch, the latest addition to Armin Strom Sailing Team, all grew up. Their passion for sailing ignited while attending Kerikeri High School.
Posted on 30 Jun
Clipper Race fleet enjoys strong westerlies at start of Ocean Sprint
The frontrunners have started the Ocean Sprint, gunning for all-important two extra points to add to leaderboard tally. LMAX Exchange is now leading the fleet, 6.5 nautical miles ahead of yesterday’s race leader ClipperTelemed+, which is four nautical miles ahead of home port entry Derry~Londonderry~Doire in third position. Those three teams have started the Ocean Sprint section this morning.
Posted on 30 Jun
Maxi yachts and a change of scenery around the world's largest lagoon
Ichi Ban, a 60’ Australian yacht, well known in this part of World, announced his participation in next Groupama Race. 2016 Groupama Race - Ichi Ban, a 60’ Australian yacht, well known in this part of the World, has announced his participation in the next Groupama Race. The 'fight' with the Maxi Beau Geste Racing from Hong Kong and the trimaran Orma 60 Team Vodafone Sailing will be undoubtedly exciting.
Posted on 30 Jun
2016 52 Super Series - Day 2 action-shots by Ingrid Abery
Photographer Ingrid Abery was on water at 2016 52 Super Series and provided this gallery of images from Day 2 action. Photographer Ingrid Abery was on water at 2016 52 Super Series and provided this gallery of images from Day 2 action.
Posted on 30 Jun