Over recent years, the local Firefly 850 Sports one design catamarans have stirred up a veritable hornet’s nest of interest.
Eight Pescott designed Firefly cats in their very colourful livery will be lining up on the start line this coming Monday in the best of seven races at the 21st Phuket Kings Cup.
Crews are flying in from around the globe to mount a serious challenge to the local boys; amongst them are some very well known expert racers. Two notable teams from the UK plus not forgetting returning experienced champions from Australia and New Zealand.
Last year it was the famous multi disciplined French sailor Kito de Pavant, very recently racing in the star studded Jaques Vabre Transat, and this year its the turn of the UK sailors with the equally if not more successful Ian Southworth, from the Hamble sailing the renamed Sea Properties (ex Chi Machine, 2006 KC winner).
The experience and expertise of some of these sailors is quite daunting.
Ian is the six times UK J24 champion, twice European champ and has a third in the world commented. He has been a Team Oracle Admirals Cup helm, UK match racing champ, Patriot Cup Winner, the list is endless.
Another of the skippers is an ex helm of the famous Sir Peter Blake ENZA giant catamaran that raced around the world. He and his crew will be sailing the Frog, owned by the colourful Chris Jongerius of the Andaman-Sea-Club.
Local sailors such as the well known veteran of many Kings Cup regattas, Henry Kaye returns again on Mamba with the rumour of a hot Australian sail maker onboard and some spanking new sails, also there’s Roger Kingdon on Moto Inzi fresh from his win in the recent Phuket Race Week where he wrapped up the 2007 Firefly Annual Award.
I am sure they will both be giving it their all in home waters to make the visitors fight for every point.
Also we should not forget the stunning hull graphics of Pagatoon owned by Pierre Forsans and Voodoo Child owned by David Hill both having made the supreme effort of transporting their boats overland from Ko Samui the sister island to Phuket in the Gulf of Thailand. Last but certainly not least Bill Phelps scary Twin Sharks driven by Brent from New Zealand, owning a similar boat down under he should be serious contender.
All in all it is shaping up to be one of the most exciting one design class racing multihull events of the year, and with the forecasted strong winds, expect to see some very fast and exciting sailing.
The sprays gonna be flying!!!!