Sailing across the Limit Point Line (where the course had been shortened) at 18h 28m 36s last night, Fred Kinmonth’s and Nick Burns’ GTS 43 Mandrake III took the IRC Overall win in the inaugural Hong Kong to Puerto Galera Yacht Race with an elapsed time of 103h 08m 36s.
This will be their second win in a row in a Hong Kong to Philippines race having won IRC Overall in the 2018 Rolex China Sea Race. As planned before the start, this was Fred’s last offshore race and he remarked on arrival, “How do I feel about my last offshore? It’s like a whole lifetime has passed before my eyes. All I can look forward to is slippers, a pipe, a warm fire, retirement and that rosy glow of knowing one’s done their best!”
With the IRC 0 Division finishing in Puerto Galera and the IRC Overall being calculated from the Limit Point Line, two unprecedented results have occurred with Antipodes winning the IRC 0 Division with a corrected time of 133h 16m 52s over Standard Insurance Centennial’s 134h 35m 41s and Standard Insurance Centennial coming second in IRC Overall with a corrected time of 124h 42m 13s ahead of Antipodes’ 124h 52m 10s
As mentioned before, second in IRC Overall, Line Honours win and race record went to Ernesto Echauz’s R/P 75 Standard Insurance Centennial from the Philippines. With one race now under her belt, Standard Insurance Centennial will be going to Subic Bay to do a little bit of work on the boat. Ernesto commented, “We'll lift the boat out and do some work on the bottom and then after that in late May / early June we'll head down for the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race.”
Third in IRC Overall and first in IRC 0 went to Geoffrey Hill’s Santa Cruz 72 Antipodes. On arrival, Navigator Alan Tillyer said, “We had a good start and came down the harbour in good shape. After that, the first night was a bit sloppy and then some beautiful sailing, flat waters and a beautiful full moon. Very interesting sailing as well, because it wasn’t the usual course you would take on a Rolex China Sea Race due to the southerly wind. When we got off the Philippines we had a lot of difficult times due to the ever changing wind patterns which made it challenging. But we got here safely and thoroughly enjoyed the race!”
Winner of the HKPN division went to Michael Ashbrook’s Jeanneau 469 Sitka followed by Dean Chisholm’s Hanse 40 Darling. “As a good friend of mine who’s recently travelled around the world on a Volvo said, “it’s all about crew work and it’s all about never giving up!” A testament to this was last night and the night before when the wind was zero and we just pursued to find the wind and we gained about 12nm on our competitors. What an amazing crew.” said Ashbrook.
He added “For those of you who don’t know; this will be our last Category 1 offshore on Sitka and to come in with a win and to have a fantastic race is what it’s all about! Tactically it’s definitely put another element on the race; to get to San Fernando or Subic Bay you are thinking outside the box already but to continue further down the coast and try and get those winds; the land breeze, the sea breeze - it just adds another element. At the end of the day its really guess work because you can’t time it, it’s luck, it’s true luck.”
The only yacht which continues to race is Chin Yew Seah’s A40 Rc Avant Garde, however with the 1800hrs cut off time tonight it seems highly unlikely they will get to the finish with the current conditions.
The on-location prize giving will be held at 1700hrs tonight at Elizabeth Hideaway in Puerto Galera, where battle flags will be awarded to the winners. The trophies for class and overall winners will be presented at Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club on Wednesday 8 May.
Full provisional results here
Standard Insurance Centennial