by RHKYC Media
Tradition dictates that the first major event of the year for Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club(RHKYC) is the Tomes Cup pursuit race, which forms a constituent part of the Club’s annual Top Dog Trophy Series and promises to blow out any post-festivity cobwebs at the same time as getting the sailors back out on the water.
Fleet - Tomes Cup 2013
Presented by Leica, the race is held in the eastern area of Hong Kong’s Victoria Harbour, taking in Tai Koo Shing, Kowloon Bay and Hung Hom in the course of the race. A chilly, grey Hong Kong afternoon was not enough to dampen the enthusiasm of the 64 competitors signed on which included 14 Flying Fifteens, 12 Etchells and 11 Big Boats.
In a breeze which morphed from a 6kt easterly to a 12kt westerly during the race, Race Officer Gareth Williams selected course six, allowing plenty of alternatives for course shortening to meet the target finish time of 1630hrs.
RHKYC Tomes Cup - a Top Dog Series event
With the slowest boats starting first, the fleet spent the afternoon playing ‘catch up’, with the higher rated boats gradually working their way up through the fleet. Approaching the target time, Etchells Swedish Blue was holding off Easy Tiger and J/80 Footloose, with big boats Ambush and Peninsula Signal 8 making ground all the time. The RO sounded the finish gun at 1626hrs, with Swedish Blue maintaining her lead to take first place and lift the Tomes Cup (first awarded in 1880 as the ‘Sugar Refiners Cup’).
At a packed prizegiving, prizes were presented by Cherry Chung of Leica, with the overall winner receiving a LEICA V-Lux 4 Camera.