sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery

 

Sail-World.com : Kevin Whitcraft President of the PKCR Organising Committee's Interview

Kevin Whitcraft President of the PKCR Organising Committee's Interview

'Kevin Whitcraft, President of the Phuket King’s Cup Regatta Organising Committee'    Phuket King's Cup Regatta    Click Here to view large photo
1.Who is the skipper of your boat this year?

Our skipper, Jaray Tipsuk, is a sailor who has won two silver medals in the Sea Games, and a gold in the J24 Sea Games in Singapore in 1996. When he was very young, he had a relative at the Thai Naval base and he used to go watch the kids training in Optimist boats. The then Captain Sunan invited him in and he was the best kid there. He went on to the World Championships immediately. That was around 1979. He began helming at Royal Varuna Yacht Club in the early 80’s and joined the national team in 1987 – the first year of the Phuket King’s Cup Regatta.

2.Is it easy or difficult to find highly competent crew members in Thailand?

We have an almost wholly Thai boat crew for the 2012 Phuket King’s Cup Regatta, including a few Westerners who hold Thai citizenship. It’s relatively easy, in fact, to find skilled Thai sailors. We have a lot of history of sailing here in Thailand, with most of our crew competing on and off internationally for over two decades, myself included; consequently, many of the crew have been racing together for a long time. Some of the other team members are, or were, a part of the Thai national team, of which I was a part for six years. The Royal Varuna Yacht Club has been instrumental for developing experienced Thai sailors.

3.How do you gauge the level of improvement in experienced and new Thai sailors?

It’s definitely getting broader. I think the Optimist programme has been strong since the late seventies, and of course Thailand has maintained a strong reputation in sailing thanks to His Majesty the King. Many of us have over the years put in time coaching Opti’s (Optimist, a small sailing dinghy) – and some of our crew have taught this for over ten years. We’ve got a culture and history of sailing in Thailand, so there’s quite a lot of improvement already there.

4.Does having a Thai speaking crew help in terms of communication and teamwork?

We panic in Thai! Definitely when things get intense the language is occasionally in Thai because it’s faster (laughs)! But we speak in English as we have an American bow-man and a couple of Kiwis on the crew, so to give them half a chance, we talk in English.

5.The Phuket Dinghy Series has been effective in the development of young Thai sailors. Do many of them go on to crew large racing boats?

Not a large percentage, actually. The biggest ‘problem’ in terms of the development of sailing in Thailand is that Asian kids are focused more on studies when in their teens, and so they switch their focus to school following the growth of their experience in Optimist. The Yacht Racing Association of Thailand has tried to get the sport into universities so they now have sailing programs and they recognise qualifications in their student assessment activities. My kids are former Optimist champions, but have continued to compete internationally in the 29er class. People tend to fall away from sailing for a bit due to their studies and later due to their work commitments, but some come back and many of the crew out of Ocean Marina were former Opti sailors.

6.Is sailing a prohibitively expensive sport for most people?

Yes, it can be. You would regularly see 140 Optimists and Lasers competing in domestic events; then it (sailing) becomes more expensive and the field gets a lot smaller not just in Thailand but internationally. It’s possible for a group of individuals to split the cost for a small keelboat, so there are ways and means for newcomers to access the sport, at least at entry level. To get to racing class it’s pretty expensive, although there are a large number of Thai owners in the Platu class, but it’s not that costly as a hobby. It’s reasonable, rather than affordable.



7.Please can you tell us about your boat?

The boat is from Croatia, and has been raced throughout the Med for about 18 months. It arrived the day before the Phuket King’s Cup Regatta four years ago. It’s very light – 4.5 tonnes and we’ve worked on it over the years. Downwind we are pretty fast – it’s our fourth year on board so we’re pretty used to it, with all the new components we installed performing well. We’ve had a few practice weekends which have helped us achieve strong finishing in 2012’s Phuket King’s Cup Regatta.


8.Please can you explain how you divide your attention between your roles?

When I’m out there on the water, I don’t even think about the Phuket King’s Cup Organising Committee responsibilities much; the Committee, the organisation, the structure, sponsorships and so forth. I’m just focused on being on the water and having fun, competing and challenging, pushing as hard as we can and being successful. And the jury, the organisation and structure all help me in my capacity as President of the Phuket King’s Cup Regatta Organising Committee. We have an excellent PR team with Vivaldi, and the organisational teams do a great job with the course, and in providing international standard race management. And needless to say the parties are well organised as well.



9.Why do you hold the Regatta at Kata Beach?
Kata Beach Resort & Spa is a strong supporter of the Regatta, and a great host sponsor. You have to consider the number of rooms available, facilities, the award ceremony, etcetera, so Kata Beach Resort & Spa is perfect in many respects. It’s located in a beautiful bay and the resort is popular with Regatta competitors.

10.Is Phuket Thailand’s leading destination for sports sailing?
Not just for sailing, but for runners, divers, surfers, windsurfing; it’s an adventure sports playground. It’s such a beautiful area in which to be outdoors and living life to the full – a large reason behind why so many people come here, return here, and enjoy being here.


11.What would you say to newcomers who want to take up sailing?
It’s about getting started, so follow the advice of Nike and “just do it!” Get licensed, get your basic training down, and most importantly, get time on the water. That’s the key. Same as when I coach Optimist sailors; it’s about experience and time spent getting out there and sailing.




by Event Media

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=104443

10:53 AM Thu 6 Dec 2012 GMT






Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.

Click for further information on


Related News Stories:

06 Dec 2013  Phuket King's Cup 2013: Leaders consolidate before final day’s racing
06 Dec 2013  Phuket King's Cup Regatta - Royal salute and racing action shots
06 Dec 2013  Phuket King's Cup 2013 - Gallery 4 from Guy Nowell Photography
05 Dec 2013  Phuket King's Cup 2013 - Gallery 3
04 Dec 2013  Phuket King's Cup 2013. Gallery 2
03 Dec 2013  Phuket King's Cup 2013 - Gallery 1
03 Dec 2013  Phuket Kings Cup Regatta Day 2 images by Max Ranchi photography
03 Dec 2013  Phuket King's Cup 2013. 'Big Fleet' racing
03 Dec 2013  Phuket King’s Cup 2013. A relaxed start to proceedings.
03 Dec 2013  Phuket Kings Cup Day 1 images by Max Ranchi photography
MORE STORIES ...

News - USA and the World

































America's Cup: Challenger calls Competitor Meeting ahead of deadline *Feature by Richard Gladwell Sail-World.com/nz,


































ABYC Fourth of July Regatta - Snipes join the action
Volvo Cork Week - Three bullets for ballistic catapult
Nacra 17 Europeans - Besson and Riou lead the overall standings
Formula 16 World Championship - Aussies claim title in Newport
Vestas Sailrocket 3 - The journey beckons
Clipper Round the World - London to provide emotional heroes welcome
ISAF Youth Worlds - Italians to lead RS:X fleet in Tavira
Vestas Sailrocket 3 - Over the Horizon
Foiling Week - Italian Moth Championship - Final results
NYYC Race Week - Yachting history on display
Rescued sailors reach shore after dramatic ocean rescue
Half Ton Classics Cup: Swuzzlebubble out front on Day 1 + Video
New York Yacht Club Race Week - Yachting history on display
Volvo Cork Week - Thrilling conditions welcome international fleet
Nacra 17 Europeans: Success for Italy's Bissaro and Sicouri
America's Cup: 2017 venue short-list reduced to two Cities
Formula Windsurfing Youth and Master Worlds overall
49er and 49erFX Europeans: Pitfalls aplenty on day 1 + Video
ISAF Youth Worlds - Laser Radial sailors look to join list of legends
Coville soon to chase solo circumnavigation record in giant trimaran
Fierce competition at the Meanline Fins Slalom Challenge   
Volvo Ocean Race - Team Brunel opt for experienced winner   
Bakewell-White supermaxi designed to take Transpac's Barn Door Trophy *Feature   
Crew rescued by navy patrol from J/111 racer after Mayday in storm   
Team Alvimedica practice in Newport, RI - Photos   
18 foot skiff European Championship (Open Europeans) - Final results   
Nacra 17 European Championships - No action on day 1   
ISAF Youth Worlds - 29er and SL16 sailors prepare for battle + Video   
Volvo Ocean Race: Eight new crew members named by teams   
Volvo Ocean Race: New additions to Spanish team announced   
2014 Cape Panwa Hotel Phuket Raceweek - Phuket Island is ready to host   
PWA Awaza World Cup - Cyril Moussilmani and Delphine Cousin on top   
Foiling Week - Moth Class Italian Open Championship Day 2   
America's Cup: Luna Rossa foiling in AC45s at their Italian base   
Star World Championship - Germans claim dramatic win in Malcesine   
PWA Awaza World Cup - Down to the wire in Turkmenistan   
Route Halifax Saint-Pierre - Off to France!   
Nacra 17 Europeans - La Grande Motte back in Olympic classes arena   
Stena Match Cup Sweden - Hansen hat trick in Marstrand + Video   
Route Halifax Saint-Pierre Race keeps an eye on Arthur   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XLXL WAS US
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT