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24 October 2006, 10:26 am
Tenth Anniversary Race
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VinaCapital Hong Kong To Vietnam Race 2006
Hong Kong

At 12:00 on Wednesday 25 October, a cannon will sound the start of the 2006 VinaCapital Hong Kong to Vietnam Race, a gruelling 656 nm 'downhill' race which will finish off the spectacular beach town of Nha Trang on the southeast coast of Vietnam.
The tenth anniversary of the first Hong Kong to Vietnam Race has attracted 13 entries, the same numbers as 2004, but with no HKPN Division this time around. Benoit LE SAFFRE's (HKG) multihull, Atmosphere, will be looking to claim line honours and challenge Skandia's 2004 record of 42 hours, 45 minutes and 41 seconds, while a juicy contest for bragging rights in IRC A is shaping up between race virgins Drumstick, TP52s Ffree Fire 52 and Island Fling and Farr 52 Hi Fi. Mandrake and Siren round out IRC Division A and will be hoping to put their experience from 2004 to good use when planning their tactics!

On Drumstick, representing the title sponsor, VinaCapital, will be one of their Senior Associates, Nguyen Quoc TRI (HKG). 31 year old TRI has never done any sailing before, and is expecting the race to be a baptism of fire. His stated expectations are 'A lot of hardship (no shower, extreme exposure to the sun, total darkness at night), but this will be a great experience and an excellent test for my endurance.'

Meanwhile the first Vietnamese national to compete in the Hong Kong to Vietnam Race, Hong MINH LE, will join the crew of Shahtoosh to participate in the 656 nm slide for the second time. In 2004, MINH LE joined the crew of charter boat HSBC Johan III so a stint in this year's Premier Cruising Division should prove more comfortable! Shahtoosh is up against Hocux Pocux 2 and HSBC Strewth whilst the IRC B Division consists of Barnstormer, Polar Star III and Quest.

Skippers and crew will be looking forward to renowned Vietnamese hospitality upon their arrival in Vietnam, not least at the race prizegiving, which will take place at the Sailing Club, Nha Trang, on Sunday 29 October.

Lindsay LYONS (As Amended By ISAF). Image, Mandrake is amongst the line for this year's race:© Guy NOWELL
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