Yacht Sales Co. Regatta 2024 – Day 1

posted in: Regattas

30-knot gusts greet competitors on first day of Yacht Solutions Co. Regatta

Photography by Scott Murray

Wow! As competitors from 15 yachts gathered in Chalong Bay to await the start of the 2024 Yacht Sales Co Regatta they were met with four knots of wind. But that quickly turned into a squall with winds gusting up to thirty knots as boats flew through the first race of the regatta. Needless to say, no kites were needed as most skippers were just trying to keep their boats and crew intact.

Casualties included Glywn Rowlands’ Twister 2 (headsail & spinnaker damage) and Mamba (hardware damage), which was unable to compete the second race. John Hearne’s Boreas previously known as Saffron, and before that Java, also had some rigging damage but all boats hope to be repaired and back on the course tomorrow.


John Newnham’s Twin Sharks took first-place honours in both races in the eight-boat Multihull Racing class while George Eddings Blue Nose copped a second and third-place finish in the two races. Dirk Weiblen’s No Fear withstood the rough weather to place third in the first race and took seventh spot in the second race, while Boreas moved up from fourth spot in the first race to place second in the second race.

Other boats competing in this class include: Twister 2, Mamba, David Liddell’s WOW (recently back from circumnavigating the globe), and Dougal Jackson’s Haruki.

Asia Catamarans, a Phuket-based multihull builder, has been quite the success story since being established some 15 years ago by Australian Alan Carwardine. As many of its builds sail in regional regattas, it seemed only fitting that they should have their own class, so John Hearne’s Boreas made history winning the first and second races in this four-boat class. Wow was second in both races, Haruki third in both, and Twister 2 fourth.

The two-boat Cruising Multihull class saw Andrew McDermott Trident beat Brigadier James Baxter’s Zephyrus in both races. McDermott, by the way, is and electrical engineer by trade (Royal Engineers) while Baxter is an OBE and the former Director of the NATO Advisory team in Macedonia, among his many other high military honours.

The four-boat Monohull Racing saw Craig Nichols Alright, formerly Emagine, win both races with Steve McConaghy’s Aftershock placing second in both. Niels Degenklow’s Phoenix was third in both races and Phuket Yacht Club Commodore Peter Dyer’s Madam Butterfly was fourth in both events. Watch out for Degenklow as the regatta goes on, however, as this experienced yachtsman has more sailing victories in Phuket than anyone else on record.

Monohull Cruising only has one competitor so Boyd Jackson’s Morningside gets to win, place and show every time.
PRO Simon James once again did a masterful job of conducting the fleet and making sure that all made it back to shore safe and sound.

With the demise of Phuket Raceweek, this event is now the marquee racing event of the summer season. Formerly called the Multihull Solutions Regatta it used to be a three-day event, that only featured multihulls. It acted as a feeder for Phuket Raceweek as competitors from abroad could fit in two regattas in ten days. It is still drawing racers from abroad though as evidenced by competitors from the UK, China and Australia, including former Olympian Steve McConaghy and his boat Aftershock.

There is a different scoring system for almost every class: Racing Monohulls are on the IRC Handicap System while the Cruising Monos & Multis are on the Phuket Yacht Club PHS Rating. And then, Racing Multis are on the OMR v9 Handicap System while the Asia Catamarans Stealth Division are being scored on the One Design Class Rule System.

Really Good Deli was the sponsor for the first day and owner Dan Fidock and his lovely wife and daughter handed out the prizes.

For those listening on the VHF radio stay tuned to channel 77 as the Thai Navy has exercises planned in the area and will be using channel 72.

The regatta will see five days of action on the water with a lay day scheduled for the 13th and the final party being held on the 16th in the evening at Kan Eang restaurant. The regatta will sail a maximum of eleven races and there will be a discard if five races are sailed.


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