by Lulu Roseman
The 2012 Top of the Gulf Regatta will take place in Thailand from 5-8 May. The Easy Tiger Racing team will take part onboard a chartered Platu 25, Ferret. To date, 14 teams have entered and that number is expected to swell to 18.
Chris Way - Top Of The Gulf
The Ferret powered by Easy Tiger crew comprises of several key Tigers including Skipper Chris Way, Peter Gregg (Trim), Peter Winter (Tactics), Malcolm Clarke (Bow) and making a guest appearance is Tom Spithill on the mainsheet.
'Tom Spithill, (younger brother of America's Cup winning skipper James) has done a few regattas with us before, including TOTG a few years ago. He is the Sail Training Master at Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club (RPAYC), so he's absolutely stoked to have the opportunity to race in an international one design competition with us again,' Chris Way said.
'In the Platu 25’s there are 18 teams competing from all over the world so it should be a very competitive event.
We’ve been training early mornings on a Force 24 at the RPAYC. Stealth training in the early westerlies before anyone is awake,' Way added.
Tom Spithill Photo: Arthur Spithill - Top Of The Gulf
Tom Spithill is looking forward to returning to the venue where the team missed out on a podium finish by a whisker in 2010 and he is determined to settle the score.
'We’ve chartered a top performing boat and bringing our own set of new sails. We’ve got a pretty good idea how to tune the boat now and it’s a very competitive fleet so you have to fight pretty hard for a spot,' Spithill said.
'As a team we all need to get used to being on a smaller boat as most of the guys have been on the Farr 40 Easy Tiger for the last couple of years. Most of the one design racing I have done is on boats similar is size to a Platu 25 so I am pretty comfortable.
'We have a 2:00am curfew meaning we’re not allowed to call it a night before then. So it’ll be a fun week of partying and sailing. We just need to get the mix right so we still perform well and climb onto that podium.'
Top Of the Gulf is Thailand’s premier regatta and is hosted by the Ocean Marina Yacht Club located near Pattaya Beach.
Top of the Gulf Regatta website