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7 March 2005, 11:40 am
Down Goes The Checkered Flag...
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Royal Langkawi International Regatta
Langkawi, Malaysia

A good breeze on the final day provides a memorable end to the regatta.
All the competitors were back out on the water for the final day's racing. The breeze did not disappoint them either and by start time a good 15 to 18 knot north east tradewind had set in which provided competitors with excellent sailing conditions. Today is also the day of reckoning for the scorer when the combined results are tabulated and the Prime Minister's Challenge Trophy and Commodore's Cup are presented to the overall winners.

Final Day's Racing

Race day four got off to an early start in medium winds which intensified during the races to a full 23 knots, the strongest so far. As a result, the rounds were quick and the sailing exhilarating. All classes got off cleanly down a spinnaker run to 210 degrees on course five. Crossing together the Racers, IRC's and Premier Cruisers all gibed to the first mark, some reaching far to the east to gather more speed. Yo! rounded first and set off for the hotdog leg after mark two.

Officials had posted the same three courses as Wednesday's 5, 6 and 7, since those had proven to be the most popular challenges. The 14-mile racers course consisted of a hexagon with an up and down detour in the middle. On the shorter eleven-mile courses the Club boats and Multi's skipped the hot dog providing them an advantage especially over the Sports Class.

Two late-departing cats nearly came to grief as one careened around the bow of the Start Boat almost directly into the other, ducking across its stern, but some deft helmsmanship by the offending cat brought both across the line like long time lovers.

Around the first mark and up the Racers' extra leg, the divisions could be seen clearly with Yo! in the lead followed by Sonnenkoenig and Ulumulu, the rest of the racers and then the Club boats. The battle for second place heated up, around 1030 local time, on the tough upwind beat to mark 4 and the two racers met at the mark, rounding neck-and-neck and raising their kites amid splashing seas. Downwind Ulumulu's spinnaker twisted knocking her back severely as Sonnenkoenig ran for the mark.

With the advantage of a shorter race, the Multi's were first through the gate at 1100 represented by Chameleon with no other challengers in sight. Then in regular procession leaders of the other classes reached down upon the finish led by Lady M racing as a Classic; Kilo for the Cruising Multi-hulls; Nom de Plume, a Club Live-aboard; Chantique for Club Cruisers and, just two hours after her start, Yo! swept past with all crew manning the rail. Other leaders finishing around noon were the Premier Cruising vessel Bolero, Sports racer Somtam Express and IRC boat Abraxas at 1215.

Trophy Roundup

Peter AHERN's Malaysian Airlines sponsored Yo! raced away with the Prime Minister's Challenge Trophy for the third time in succession. Armin SCHMID's new Farr 36 SonnenKoenig helmed by Hannes WAIMER, the CEO of DK Yachts, finished up in second place. Despite winning all the Premier Cruising Class races David LINDAHL's La Samudra was relegated to third overall.

The Commodore's Challenge Cup is awarded to the combined winner of the Club, Liveaboard and Classic classes. David KIMPTON's Lady M, the biggest yacht at the regatta, took the overall prize from the Classic Class after two remarkable wins over the last two days. Her combined waterline length and momentum allowed her to surge past the smaller competitors in the windy conditions. After re-establishing themselves as leaders in the Liveaboard Class Jay JARVIS's twin wishbone rigged Blue Jay ended up second overall after finishing a disappointing seventh in the last race. Race four's startline accident forced the early leaders to retire so Jelle DE VRIES' Sunshine Forever came to the fore and managed to claim third place overall.

In the competition for the Langkawi Sports Trophy Scott DUNCANSON's Phuket 8, Securicor Somtam Express, ended up tied on points with the Royal Malaysian Navy's (RMN) Platu 25 KDP I!. On count back the tie was broken in favour of RMN boat as they won the last race just ahead of Securicor Somtam Express. The other RMN Platu 25 KDP I ended up third.

Bob MOTT's well sailed Chameleon finished with almost a clean sweep of firsts to take the Malaysian Multihull Challenge Cup with Tim MILNER's Charro in second place.

Event Media (Final Day's Racing) & AsianYachting.com (Trophy Roundup). Image:© Event Media
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