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Autumn Regatta 2022 at Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club

by Vivian Ngan 19 Sep 07:36 BST 17-18 September 2022

The opening event of Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club's 2022-2023 sailing season, the Autumn Regatta got under way in Hong Kong's Victoria Harbour over the weekend of 17 and 18 September in hot and hazy conditions.

Open to all of Hong Kong's keelboat sailors, the regatta attracted more than 600 sailors across seven one-design classes, Sportsboats and Big Boats. 101 boats turned out on the first day of the regatta, including 34 Big Boats in four divisions.

The day was marred however by a midday downpour which killed the breeze, leading to Race Officer David Norton making the call to postpone racing after a long and arduous wait under the baking sun.

The second day again started slowly with the AP being raised on shore; delaying the start of racing for around an hour. Eventually just before noon with a 6 to 8kts westerly breeze, the RO opted for a start in Kowloon Bay. Big Boat Divisions 0, 1 and 2 as well as the Etchells were sent to sail two laps between Kowloon Bay and Tsim Sha Tsui, whilst other classes were set off on a shorter course taking in 1.5 laps between Kowloon Bay and Tsim Sha Tsui.

RO David Norton was pleased that the wind remained stable for the rest of the day allowing the fleets to take in two races. He was very happy with how the day went, commenting after racing, "we had more than 100 boats - a nice turnout for this race. The sight from the committee boat looking up to the harbour was magnificent, full of spinnakers - absolutely fantastic. It was worth the wait. We got two good races in and decided not to put in what could have been a mediocre third race and I hope everyone is happy."

The biggest fleet on the start line was the Dragon class, with 13 boats celebrating a particularly special year. 2022 marks 90 years since the Dragons made their Hong Kong debut at this very same event in 1932. Happy 90th Anniversary Dragons! Bram Van Olphen's Dragonfly took the overall win of their class.

In the Big Boat Divisions, Noel Chan's Rampage 88, Nick Southward's Admiralty Harbour Whiskey Jack, Chris Lau's XT and Arthur Cheng's Boss took the overall winner title of their respective division. For the one-design classes and sportsboats, Etchells Gunga Din, Flying Fifteen Niffty, Impala Pied Piper, J/80 Footloose, Pandora Windfall and Ruffian Helios and Sportsboat F.A.B. lifted the silverware in their class.

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