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

 

Sail-World.com : Neptune Regatta 2011 – from Nongsa to Zero to Hero

Neptune Regatta 2011 – from Nongsa to Zero to Hero

'Neptune Regatta 2011. The whole crew and crowd.'    Guy Nowell ©    Click Here to view large photo

Last week’s inaugural Neptune Regatta was a huge and resounding success. Event Organiser Tudor John was feeling pretty pleased with himself (and his team), on closing night, saying, ‘In my wildest dreams I did not envisage such a tremendous success as has unfolded over the past week.’

Neptune Regatta 2011 Route and Anchorages -  Neptune Regatta 2011   Click Here to view large photo


The concept was simple enough – a race to the equator and back. Heck, it’s only 72 nm from Singapore as the crow flies. Or 83 nm through the islands of the Riau Archipelago, starting at Nongsa Point Marina. How hard can it be? Well, quite hard actually. Firstly, you are now operating in Indonesia: that means there will be an awful lot of bureaucracy to deal with. And second, some of your potential competitors will have concerns – real or perceived - about security. Add in the fact that there are no support facilities of any sort, let alone a marina, on the islands near the equator, and you have set yourself a real organisational and logistics challenge.

Neptune Regatta 2011. Sirius crosses the line in style. -  Guy Nowell ©?nid=80140   Click Here to view large photo


Neptune Regatta 2011. Nehelennia crosses the line with great enthusiasm. -  Guy Nowell ©?nid=80140   Click Here to view large photo


In the event Tudor John, Alex ‘Ferret’ Voss and all the others who got roped in along the way did a magnificent job of sweet-talking the relevant parties and getting the Indonesian Tourism authorities on side – not to mention enlisting the assistance of the Indonesian Navy who provided both transportation and a visible security presence.

No less than three reconnaissance expeditions ‘went south’ to check both Indonesian and British Admiralty charts. An anchorage was identified at Pulau Buaya, just 8 nm from the equator; a campsite and forward operating base was located (Pulau Sikeling); and villagers from nearby Pulau Blanding were entrained to clear the proposed campsite of fallen trees, build a 60m jetty, and help with the setting up of the camp when the time came.

There were 101 other considerations, and just as many problems to overcome, but the short story is that eight sailing yachts and four powerboats (yes, motor vessels are very much welcome at this event as well) raced and cruised from Nongsa Point Marina to Pulau Buaya, then ‘sprinted’ to the equator and back, and then raced and cruised home again. There were two nights of partying and camping on Pulau Sikeling (aka Neptune Island), featuring endless supplies of sausages, hamburgers and bacon sarnies, and The Jetty Bar erected, stocked, sponsored and run by Uncabunca (Singapore). Cheers!

Neptune Regatta 2011. Aquavit 5. What goes up... -  Guy Nowell ©?nid=80140   Click Here to view large photo


It was an event that started as a good idea over a few beers, and after a great deal of hard work became reality. PRO Jerry Rollin said ‘ this event was an exciting and challenging experience, more so than any other regatta that I can think of. Everything was happening for the first time, so you never knew quite what was going to happen next. There was no previous experience to draw on, and everyone – organisers and competitors alike – had to stay flexible!’

Many naysayers wondered why anyone would want to race to the equator, and the Doldrums. John and Voss checked the met records for the last 30 years, and identified the optimum time of year to deliver (hopefully) not only breeze, but consistent directional breeze. They were not disappointed – all racing over five days and across all the race courses was conducted in between 9 and 20 kts of wind. Added Rollin, ‘Doldrums? What Doldrums?! The breeze peaked at 24 kts in the Pengelap Strait during the long race south, so concern about lack of wind was unfounded – but we were prepared just in case, and I made lots of provisions for shortened courses in the SIs.’

Neptune Regatta 2011. Freeboard? What freeboard? Indonesian gondolas pressed as landing craft. -  Guy Nowell ©?nid=80140  


‘I believe that this event will develop and grow quickly, because it really is a great event - and an adventure - and lots of people haven’t done anything like this before. As an inaugural event there were plenty of onlookers ‘waiting to see’ – either they wouldn’t wear the expense or risk wasting holiday time for an unproven deal – but they will now.’

On a practical note, a ‘proven’ event is more likely to appeal to sponsors, as well. Organisers dug deep to get this one afloat, and tapped a few additional private pockets as well. Now there is an opportunity for commercial sponsors to associate themselves with a unique and special event.

From the point of view of the participants, this is an event that will appeal to those who want to add a little adventure to their boating. But don’t make the mistake of thinking that this is a weekend cruise with extra bbq sauce provided. The IRC Racing fleet completed four windward-leeward races, two 79-milers, and a 20 nm sprint to the Equator in just five days. Seven races and something over 200 nm. As David Ross, owner of Kukukerchu, pointed out, ‘that’s just about as much as the Raja Muda – in half the time. And one of those long races was to windward all the way.’ It is definitely not an event for the faint-hearted. ‘A regatta by sailors, for sailors,’ is how Tudor John describes it. ‘There’s a strong endurance element in this, so don’t turn up if you don’t want to sail hard and sail the distance.’

Neptune Regatta 2011. Men at Work crosses the line. -  Guy Nowell ©?nid=80140   Click Here to view large photo


Rob Berkley, RO for the PY division, said ‘There was so much that was right about this regatta, but I do have one grumble. I came off the Four Peaks Race in Hong Kong, and went straight down to the Neptune Regatta. Having been involved in two 'adventurous' sailing events in the space of eight days, I have been cast right back to how I learned how to sail. Now I am looking at the rest of the sailing calendar, and it all looks rather boring…’

Competitors and participants – both power and sail - undoubtedly enjoyed themselves. There are testimonials all over the event’s Facebook page. The recurring words are ‘great’, ‘adventure’, and ‘organisation’. Add in ‘fun’, and ‘challenging’. Will Schick, crewmember on support vessel El Oro, put nearly all of them together, saying ‘What a great regatta. It was fun, challenging, competitive, well-organised and safe, and you pulled it off in style. I will definitely be recommending to many more to join in the next one (but there will never be another first Neptune Regatta!)’

James Harris, owner of m/y ‘Something Special’ had some succinct words to say as well. ‘It's so often the case that ‘bar talk’ never makes it to the next level - let alone delivering something as monumental and historic as this. My faith in bar talk is restored! Bravo!’

We applaud the energy and vision that went into creating this all-new event from scratch, and congratulate the organisers on a hugely successful ‘show’. It took a lot of people, and lot of time, and the Organisation has proved that it is up to the challenge. We can only imagine that Neptune 2012 will be even better. We’ll be there, proudly wearing a Neptune ‘1’ shirt, and looking for some more Slimy Pollywogs to introduce to King Neptune…

Neptune Regatta 2011. King Neptune and his Assistant welcome Suzy Rayment (Editor, Yachtstyle) to equatorial waters. -  Guy Nowell ©?nid=80140   Click Here to view large photo


Neptune Regatta 2011. Kukukerchu and KRI Kala Hitam on the equator. -  Guy Nowell ©?nid=80140   Click Here to view large photo


Neptune Regatta 2011. Camp Neptune. -  Guy Nowell ©?nid=80140   Click Here to view large photo


Neptune Regatta 2011. Uncabunca’s Jetty Bar - ’a bar in the middle of nowhere, on an uninhabited island’. And it never ran out. -  Guy Nowell ©?nid=80140   Click Here to view large photo


Neptune Regatta 2011. Men at Work, chasing hard. -  Guy Nowell ©?nid=80140   Click Here to view large photo


Neptune Regatta 2011. Pulau Blanding’s top band, the Village People. -  Guy Nowell ©?nid=80140   Click Here to view large photo




by Guy Nowell, Sail-World Asia

  

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

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=80140

4:56 AM Wed 9 Feb 2011 GMT






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

Click for further information on
2011 Neptune Regatta
2012 Neptune Regatta Media Centre

Related News Stories:

08 Feb 2011  Neptune Regatta 2011 - what does it take to lose a second?
07 Feb 2011  Neptune Regatta 2011 - Crossing the Line, and other stories
05 Feb 2011  Neptune Regatta 2011 - Heading south to the Equator
02 Feb 2011  Neptune Regatta 2011: the Race to Zero has started
01 Feb 2011  Neptune Regatta 2011: Ready to head south to Neptune’s Realm
22 Dec 2010  Neptune Regatta 2011 - preparing the way for the Race to the Equator
12 Oct 2010  Racing to the Equator: the Neptune Regatta 2011

News - USA and the World



America's Cup: Alameda makes overtures on Venue hosting for San Fran *Feature by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.com/nz,


























2014 Pacific Cup - Scarlet Runner wins by Vanessa Yates, Hawaii






































Plastic Classic takes place at Mariposa Hunters Point YC
Six Metre European Championship - No champion declared for 2014
J/Teams sail tough Chicago Mackinac Race
Anna Tunnicliffe wins first event of Reebok Cross Fit Games + Video
2014 Pacific Cup - Skill and luck required for victory
Six Metre European Championship - Action resumes on day 4
BIC Techno 293 Worlds 2014 - Day 4
PWA Fuerteventura Grand Slam on the horizon
Rolex Big Boat Series - Golden Jubilee to take place this September
DH Pacific Cup - Running with the pack + Video
Women's Match Race Golfe du Morbihan - Testing day in Vannes
Brewin Dolphin Commodores' Cup - Ireland establishes solid lead
International Moth Worlds: Outteridge charges into the lead + Video
Marina Rubicón Round Canary Islands Race - First blood to Team Brunel
ISAF Youth Match Racing Worlds - Competition heats up on day 2
Laser Radial World Championships - Competition aplenty on day 3 +Video
Extreme Sailing Series - Penultimate Act to take place in Nice
Leukemia Cup - Images by Leighton O'Connor
Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup - Meeting of the grand designs
29er North American Championship - Final series kicks off
29er World Championship 2014 set to start in Kingston, Ontario   
Barcelona and Parnu chosen for 2015 ORC championship events   
2014 Race for Rady Yacht Race - Benefiting Rady Children’s hospital   
CMRC Summer Invitational Series - Doubleheader events start tomorrow   
BIC Techno 293 Worlds 2014 - Day 3   
Sailing through STEM Night at California YC   
Six Metre European Championship - High temps and little wind on day 3   
Women’s Match Race Golfe du Morbihan - Light wind opener in Vannes   
International Moth Worlds: Rashley ahead as Aussies close in   
Brewin Dolphin Commodores' Cup - Unsatisfactory conditions on day 4   
ISAF Youth Match Racing Worlds - American unbeatable on day 1   
RS Feva World Championships - All set at Yacht Club de Carnac   
ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards - Nominations now open   
BIC Techno 293 Worlds - Steady winds on day 2 + Video   
29er North American Open Championship - Qualifying series wraps up   
Opening ceremony O'pen Bic World Cup, Travemunde Week, Germany   
Six Metre Europeans - Wind fails to make an appearance on day 2   
Edgartown Race Weekend - Let the sailing (and good times) begin   
ISAF Youth Match Racing World Championship - Action commences July 23   
International Moth Worlds - Mothballed on day 4 + Video   


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 NEW US
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT