sail-world.com -- Philippine Hobie Challenge 2013 - the wrap
Philippine Hobie Challenge 2013 - the wrap
Sat, 23 Mar 2013
The Philippine Hobie Challenge 2013 recently concluded with its last stop at the beautiful Anvaya Cove Beach and Nature Resort . There were a few other familiar locations which the fleet had visited in previous Challenges like the private island of Hermana Mayor and Capones but the organizing committee made sure this year’s route, which changes every year, would be different from the rest.
From February 23 to March 1, 16 Hobie Cats made their way 250nm from Zambales to Bataan with a side trip to the famous Subic Bay, former home of the US Pacific Fleet. As with previous Challenges, nature would provide the excitement but this year it came in the form of a different challenge. With shifty winds that would intermittently disappear, this year’s Challenge would throw the whole fleet for a loop.
The conditions were perfect for some newcomers to the fleet. At the welcome party some of the teams admitted that, although they were seasoned sailors on other boats and crafts, this would be the first time for them to set foot on a Hobie.
Team Watto, Team Optimum Height and Team Felix’s Philippine Adventure from Australia, as well as the crew of the Flyin Hawaiins from the US and Team Tiki Tour out of New Zealand were relative newbies to the Hobie 16s. Some however would step up and finish surprisingly well.
On the other end of the spectrum, the Hobie Grandmaster team of Bruce Tardrew and Sarah Turnbull, regulars on the Challenge and well known masters of the high winds, would do battle with the light shifty winds throughout the Challenge.
In the end, some of the local teams, more familiar with the finicky winds would make it to the podium. Team Mama Mia, the father daughter team of Luigi and Yvonne Manzi dominated from the second leg onwards finishing in the top three in all but two of the five legs. By the third leg, his cumulative time led the fleet by over an hour cementing his first place finish. Luigi, an Italian citizen has been a long time resident of the Philippines and considered by many as the master of light wind sailing.
A combined Australian and Filipino team of Andrew Locke and Eric Tomacruz came in second. Finishing in the money in all five legs, the devastating lead by Luigi and Yvonne in Leg Three would prove to be insurmountable for this team.
Rounding out the top three was another father daughter team of Monchu and Bianca Garcia. Owning the local Hobie franchise it came as no surprise that this team would be the first all Filipino team to have an overall podium finish in the history of the Philippine Hobie Challenge.
Bruce, who was out of his element this year finishing fourth summed it up pretty well. The local teams are starting to give the rest of the visitors a run for their money.
1.Bruce Tardrew / Sarah Turnbull 2. Andrew Locke / Eric Tomacruz 3. Rex Puentespina / Vice