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THE BMW ROYAL LANGKAWI REGATTA 2005


No Fixed Address leads Charro and Kilo

A Winning Package
The third Royal Langkawi Regatta was once again hosted by the Royal Langkawi Yacht Club and BMW. Numbers were down to 47 entrants, not unexpected after the recent December 26th Tsunami.

A sensible decision by the organizers bringing the regatta forward to early March, and into the more dominant monsoon wind and weather patterns, paid off with constant breezes giving excellent sailing conditions.


A beer in one hand and a pip in the other!

Non stop entertainment - Let's party!












The BMW Langkawi Regatta is notable as the only regatta in Asia conveniently operating out of a marina, with all entrants returning each afternoon to their own berths. A new addition is the introduction of a lay day, breaking up the four days of racing giving participants the chance to relax and enjoy some sightseeing on the island.


Altogether nine multihulls turned up allowing two divisions - racing and cruising.


Lighten Up under spinny

The competing racing division Multihulls were:
F-31 a Farrier 31 trimaran representing the Royal Selangor Yacht Club Malaysia Port Klang. Owned and skippered by Tunku Nazim from Malaysia. Nazim made it up from Port Klang and, having no other multis down his way, had never before raced in company with another multihull. Hopefully Tunku Nazim can make it back next year. This year was a shake down run so better things are expected of him next year
Charro a Mark Pesscot 10.6m design cat representing ACYC Ao Chalong Yacht Club Phuket – Tim Milner, owner/skipper with Rod Rockets Palmer -Aussie, Bruce from Alaska and Oy from Thailand. Charro grabbed a number of line honours wins and an overall 2nd at the recent Kings Cup Regatta in Phuket.


Chakra holds off Kilo


Chakra – a 15.2m Schionnings cat representing ACYC Phuket owned by Frank Cusack and skippered by Todd Ekert from Australia with a crew of two - Chris Runnegar from Australia and Thomas from Switzerland. Todd and Chris did a great job of keeping things together short handed to help keep the multi numbers up and provided some added competition. Frank had jumped ship to Chameleon as tactician and sailing master. This is the first time Frank has even seen Chakra sailed by anyone else. Chameleon had to shed two of their best crew for this to happen, as they were the only ones Frank trusted for the task.

Considering Chakra is up for sale at the moment, that was a brave move by Frank and a tough situation to place Todd and Chris in. The boys worked themselves to a frazzle both mentally and physically over the first few days and had to call it a day before race 4 and 5, totally exhausted after putting the big fifty-footer thought the course. Thank you guys- much appreciated!


Charro powers windward in heavy conditions


Chameleon a 14.4m Cyber cat designed by Tim Mumby representing ACYC Phuket skippered and owned by Bob Mott, crewed by Frank Cusack, John from Aussie who for some unknown reason likes to be called Handsome John. When Handsome is not busy polishing and caressing his BMW motorbikes he volunteers to lay marks in the Kings Cup and Koh Samui Regattas, David Peter Bond from England - a resident of Thailand - joined us in the Kings Cup and returned again to do foredeck in Langkawi. Peter from Florida, Michael from England, and on the last day, Chris Runnegar were all on board.


Chameleon under masthead spinny


Chameleon was in full charter trim when she arrived, but the charter gear was shed so She could be snapped into racing mode. She would be one of - if not the only - purpose designed cruising charter cats that can play the two roles successfully. No Fixed Address a 11.7m Shaun Arber design cat representing ACYC Phuket. Skippered and owned by Brent McInnes crewed by the lovely Lenka from Slovakia who has managed to pick up Australian swearing to perfection. She has the ability of saying F-You and make it sound like - how yah going mate? The remaining crew was made up by a team of Malaysians from the Reggae Bar – Yam, Din, Bidi and Des from Australia. NFA was the overall winner last year of the Langkawi Multihull Cup. This year she was fully operational without the Image Asia patch on the side covering some screwed and glued-on plywood. No Fixed Address used to be called Spirit of Cairns and was a competitor back in 1988 in the Round Australian Bicentenary Race.


Chameleon close hauled in 20 knots

Cruising Division Multihulls:
Sedna a Dean 13.4m design cat representing RLYC owned by Joan Foo Mahony, skippered by Noel Belman and crewed by YM Tunku Soraya Dakhlah the Vice Commodore of the Langkawi Yacht Club, Terry Mahony, Barbara Pennels, Mark Jones, Abdul Malek and Abdul Khalid. Joan has only recently taken delivery of Sedna, which was sailed over from South Africa this year. Sedna is the name given to the mythical Mother of the Oceans and ruler over all life in the sea.

Lighten Up a 13.9m Kurt Hughes design cat representing ACYC Phuket built in Phuket and skippered by Bill and Ju Eby crewed by family and friends. Bill hails from Canada and spends part of the year warming his feet in Phuket and surround waters. Not a bad life.

Kilo a 14m Cyber design cat by Tim Mumby representing ACYC Phuket owned by Chris Sieber and skippered by Chris along with Phairot Sricham his Thai captain, Dave and Debz Lee regular crew members from England but living locally on their yacht Rogue Wave, Dave Marsden and Lynsey Hill also from England. Kilo is an older design a bit shorter than the newer versions but still a fast machine.


NFA and Charro


Escape a 11.58m Lagoon catamaran owned and skippered by Robert Walter Stone from Canada crewed by Sandy from Taiwan and a join in Philippino crew member supplied by Simpson Marine the agents for Lagoon in Malaysia. Bob sailed the first two days aboard Remington an S&S mono and raced the last two days on Escape. Bob has now retired to Thailand having covered many miles in the air with the Canadian Airforce and China Airlines. If anyone remembers the comments in the movie “Top Gun” relating to flying dog sh-t out of China well Bob flew cargo planes out of China – he wasn’t sure what the cargo was!


NFA and Kilo

This year the wind gods were certainly in a good mood, giving ever increasing winds over the four racing days. The fleet saw building wind strengths building reaching 23 knots on the course of approximately 11 miles by the third day.

Two races were completed on the first day with a shortened course on the second race due to lightening conditions around midday. Sensibly the racing committee decided to shorten races early with no procrastination.

Race 1: Tuesday. In light to medium condition, both cruising and racing divisions were off to a reaching start with Chameleon leading the pack in racing and Kilo leading cruising. Over the 11 mile Chameleon extended her lead followed by F31 and Charro with No Fixed Address and Chakra tussling for 3rd.


Escape and Kilo


Race 2: Tuesday. After a short break the second race was off, with Chameleon crossing the line first and leading the pack to the first mark in clean air. After the first mark the winds receded to a whisper leaving all other contenders bunched up on the approach living in each other wind shadows. The finishing margin between Chameleon and second placed Charro was quite large being 37 minutes over a shortened course of about 9 miles.


NFA and Kilo


Race 3: Wednesday saw increasing wind condition allowing the multis to complete the course in quick times. The procession continued with Chameleon taking line honours once again in racing and Kilo securing another first in cruising.


Kilo at speed with hull up

Thursday was set aside as a lay day for a break from racing and the opportunity to see the sights on Langkawi Island. Many took the opportunity to sleep in, recuperating from the previous night’s parties and a solid two days of racing.Race 4: Friday saw an increase in wind strengths to a constant 23 knots over the course. The multis were flying and the order of the day for most was spinnakers in the water. No Fixed address was to first to show their prowess with prawn trawling. Someone should have told Brent that the prawns slip thought the large holes. Charro had a go too, but with less dramatic results as NFA.


F31 under spinnaker


Most of the remaining multis chose not to fly kites on what was a mostly reaching course. The only multi to successfully carry a kite was Chameleon. Her crew some of which had only joined for the first time had their act together and speeds were up with Chameleon trucking along under fractional kite at 18 knots plus. The 11-mile course was covered in fastest time (48m 42s - average speed 13.63 knots) by Chameleon this day with Charro taking first on handicap relegating Chameleon to second place and F31 finishing a respectable third.


Charro under spinny


Race 5: Saturday saw easing conditions down to around 20 knots once again allowing for a quick completing of the days circuit. Chameleon crossed the start first, but this time in company with a cruising cat who tried to run the line on port at the race committee boat end. A lesson was quickly learned as a call of ‘starboard’ came from Chameleon as she ran down the line nearly pinning the much slower Lagoon at the start boat end. A quick change of course saw Chameleon speed off in the distance under kite leaving the Escape crew to contemplate their lucky “Escape” running the line on port tack.

3rd BMW Royal Langkawi Regatta
Progressive Series Results Multihulls


Charro's trawling attempt


Multihull Racing
Name Owner Country Race1 Race2 Race3 Race4 Race5 Total Drop Series Place
Chameleon B. Mott Australia 1 1 1 2 1 6 2 4 1
Charro T. Milner Thailand 5 2 4 1 3 15 5 10 2
No Fixed Ad B. McGinnes Australia 4 3 2 4 2 15 4 11 3
F31 Tunku Nazim Malaysia 2 4 3 3 5 17 5 12 4
Chakra F. Cusack Australia 3 5 5 dns dns 23 5 18 5
Multihull Cruising
Name Owner Country Race1 Race2 Race3 Race4 Race 5 Total Drop Series Place
Kilo Chris Sieber Thailand 1 3 1 1 3 9 3 6 1
Sedna Joan Foo Malaysia 3 2 2 2 1 10 3 7 2
Lighten Up Bill Eby Canada 2 1 3 4 2 12 4 8 3
Escape Robert Stone Canada 4 4 4 3 4 19 4 15 4


Brent always ready with something to say and the lovely Lenka


Parties as usual were the mainstay of the regatta and lived up to - and beyond - expectations.

The opening ceremony and party was held at the Royal Langkawi Yacht Club. Langkawi Yacht Club. This was a a great venue nestled on the shore overlooking Kuah Harbour. A generous buffet of western, Indian and Malay dishes was laid on, with the always-popular roast beef carved off the bone, never ending supply of chicken and beef satay sticks and fascinating deserts accompanied by assortments of local fruits. Music was provided by a lively local band, bringing the evening to a close at around 1400 hrs.


NFA getting ready to trawl


The second night saw a move to Pantai Cenang Beach and the Laman Padi resort hosted by Petronas. As all was relaxed, with the day’s racing completed and plenty of time to head back to the marina, grab a shower ashore at the yacht club and hop on one of the air- conditioned coaches for a drive across the island to the evening venue.

It did not end there, as the DJ at the yacht clubs Captain’s Deck kept things rocking to the early hours, with dignitaries and sailors trying out their dancing prowess. The Captains deck was open every evening until the wee hours.


Charro trawling

The Third party was at the Four Season resort in the north of the island, hosted by Malaysian Airlines. The Four Season was not officially open, so our group was the first to see the impressive five-star resort. Food came in splendidly spread out displays, including many Malay dishes, Sushi and – of course - the obligatory roast beef off the bone, sumptuous salad combinations down to a mouth watering desert collection including jellies, various cakes including cheesecake and Tiramisu with a tang of alcohol. All was washed down with copious supplies of wines, beers and spirits - all provided by the sponsors. A heavy evening shower did little to dampen the spirits of those who attended. The big announcement that night – made by Wolfgang Schlimme, managing director of BMW Malaysia – was that crew of the racing mono division’s winner would be flown by Malaysian Airline to Valencia, Spain to meet the BMW Oracle crew in person. BMX is pulling out all stops in an attempt to attract high profile racers to this event in line with their worldwide marketing approach to excellence in international competitions.


Chameleon under masthead spinnaker turning mark


The Lay Day saw a sizable group appear at the Chinese-run Wonderland restaurant for a selection of seafood dishes. The Wonderland restaurant is always crammed with locals, yachties and tourists. Meals are consistently delicious and remarkably cheap. My favorite there is Hecko (a Mantis Shrimp in batter done in a Tamarind sauce with a tang of chili). The art is to pick out the shrimp and avoid the chilies. Some headed of to the Reggae Bar on Pantai Cenang Beach. To our delight our racing comrades on No Fixed Address and Charro spent the small hours there punishing themselves and numbing brain cells.


Chameleon's trophys

The effect was apparent the next day, in particular when NFAs embarked on their prawn trawling exercise. If they had been sensible, they would have eaten seafood with us to cover their cravings. Not a prawn was to be seen when they finally got the remains of the spiny aboard. Charro made a less embarrassing attempt to collect their quota of prawns. The guys must have been drinking out of the same trough the night before as they suffered exactly the same symptoms.

RACE 4 Evening number five was spent a short distance away at the Sheraton Pedana Resort “Dining Alfresco” in a setting by the sea with American Express Malaysia as the sponsors. Again a impressive buffet - both in taste and presentation.


Joan and Tunku Saroya collect for Sedna

The final presentation party was held at the Yacht Club and again attended by former Malaysian Prime Minister, Y.A. Bhg Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, a patron of both the regatta and the yacht Club. His presence the last two years has emphasized the importance of the event to Malaysia, and in particular his favourite island Langkawi. After speeches were made along with just the right degree of pomp and ceremony, final prizes we distributed - and it was off to yet another elegantly displayed buffer with no effort spared. Later dancing tunes were pumped out by The Aseana Percussionist Unit a very impressive 14 piece band Malaysian band. Many took to the dance floor to tunes varying from Blues to Reggae, while the night sky was lit up by an impressive fireworks display.


Sate buffet










A mingling of locals and yachties chatted away, discussing tactics with a view to returning next year to an even bigger event and a large event. Surprising, and unlike the previous two regatta, few partygoers ended up in the pool this year.

A number of multihulls were affected by the Tsunami this year. Kilo suffered major crossbeam damaged that was repaired in Phuket. She was slammed by a run away Thai fishing boat riding the four-metre Tsunami wave in Chalong Bay and nearly driven ashore. It just goes to show how strong an alloy cat is. Charro was dipped down as the wave hit her in the stern and managed to scoop up the mooring rope and chain with her prodder, snapping off the prodder.


Bob Mott collecting line honours and first place prize











No Fixed Address just doesn’t seem to be able to keep out of the way. If she is not being rammed by 55 foot steel monos (refer to last years Langakwi article) she is being bounced on the bottom by three Tsunami waves whilst anchored off Brent’s favourite Langkawi bar, the Reggae Bar at Pantai Cenang.

We rang him from Phuket to see how he was going down there as we had already been hit. As we spoke, Brent had to hang up as the wave was now coming straight for him. So NFA limped back to Phuket and was repaired by Brent and friends on the beach next to the Ao Chalong Yacht Club.


Tunku Hasim collects his second place prize


Another casualty for a different reason was Back Chat, a Crowther 48 cat. The owners Jock and Ruth Main had committed themselves to help rebuild a Thai village that was decimated by the Tsunami at Bang Tao Beach to the north of Phuket Island. If you see those guys around buy them a beer - they deserve it. If anyone is interested in helping in any way get in contact with www.handsonthailand.org


Dusk at The Four Seasons

You could also add Mark Pescott to the Tsunami victims list as he had to stay back and work on Tim Milner’s new Whitehaven 10.95. The new cat is named in Thai “Seekong Haak” – in English - “Broken Ribs” after an experience from Tim’s checkered past. Broken Ribs had a premature launch as it floated around in Latitude Eight’s shed along with a Schionnings Prowler 42. Both boats floated around without colliding as the Tsunami wave entered and exited the shed. A forty foot shipping container was washed about ten metres on to a near by road, giving and indication of the forces involved and luck of the two cats not to sustain any damage.


A proud chef

All concerned with Multihull racing in the area are working towards having an ever-increasing fleet of competitive racing cats. To that end Mark Pescott is building a number of Firefly’s with an extensive use of carbon fibre and a number of lightweight Whitehaven designs. Broken Ribs and Voodoo Child will soon be launched in Phuket. Contact Mark for information on mjpescott@phuketinternet.co.th .


Four Season's fabulous desserts

Adding to the production in Thailand is the partnership between Frank Cusack and I bringing about an increase in alloy cruising come-charter-cats with performances much the same as Tim Mumby's Cyber designs, Chameleon and Kilo. These newly designed 15.4 metre (50 foot 6 inch) alloy performance ocean cruising cats will be a collaboration between Frank, myself and Des Dunstan, an Australian Naval architect from Perth. It will go into production in Thailand around September and will be built out of a new alloy called Sealium. Sealium is a new version alloy made in France and is 15% stronger in the weld areas with much better corrosion resistance. The new cats will be named Silkline 560s. Keep an eye out for them.


They will be fast, robust and practical cats for those who want to sail, not motor, when they cross oceans. Their light to medium wind performance will be impressive. They will not be lacking in any way and will have all the amenities and equipment aboard for a turn key getaway. Contact Bob on marineware@loxinfo.co.th . The interesting thing is Chameleon is the heaviest of the six Cyber designs launched so far, while Tim’s cat Cyber is the lightest by far, with the best sailing potential of them all. Cyber is on the market at the moment now, located just north of Brisbane in the Caboulture River near Monty’s Marine Park. You can email Tim at cyberyachts@yahoo.com.au for more information.


So, BMW, take note: there are a bunch of new kids (cats) on the block in numbers that will add colour and spice to any regatta. Multihulls should get the recognition they deserve, not just the racing Monohulls, consistently outnumbered each year at the BMW Langkawi Regatta. Not a good idea to have all your eggs in one basket – there is a much better chance of them getting broken in a Monohull!

 


The Four Season's band

Commodore Abdullah and friends











For those who cannot get their multis up here, there are a number of charters and join-in individual crew spots available. Quite a few multis and monos were chasing crew this year. Charro was one, and had to go out short-handed. So look us up on www.far-away.net www.asian-sailing.com and www.sunsail.com and on the crew available and crew needed lists on www.langkawiregatta.com pages.


Drums!


If you are in Oz and know Geoff Cruse, ask him what he thought. He, for one, is eager to come back next year.
Entry prices are still a low 150AUS$ with two party tickets included – not to mention the marina berth, power and water that are provided complimentary for 8 days.

Special thanks go to “Zack Zailani and Wicky Sundram”, the hard working Yacht Club management and the regatta management team, along with the more than 200 volunteers without whom it simply wouldn’t work. All did a great job under stressful and challenging conditions. This is the first time Wicky and Zack have run the show themselves. As us Aussies say, “Good On Yah Mates”The next regatta scheduled on the west coast is Phuket Race Week to be held over 4 days the end of July. Please visit www.phuketraceweek.com for details. Good sailing hands will also be required for that regatta so please contact Grenville Fordam and Andy Dowden for info. Chameleon, Kilo and Mozart (Chameleon’s sister ship) will be out there again along with a number of Pescott cats including his soon to be launched Firefly. We are also expecting to see the Schionnings Coco Blues down from Samui. Competition will be close and tough between the vastly different multis in the fleet. A number of cats will be available for charter. They are listed on the Phuket Race Weeks website. Individual are also welcome. So until the next regatta stable sailing!


Sheraton sunset

Handsome John collects honours for Chameleon

Heavy weather sailing
March 2009

"I have been capsized, foundered, run-down and placed in more survival conditions than I can remember"

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A Voyaging Canoe for Tikopia
March 2009
A project to build a sailing double canoe for Tikopia.


Tikopia is a tiny remote Polynesian island in the Western Pacific, which has maintained self-sufficiency for 3000 years.
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Using a Parachute Anchor
March 2009

Peter Clutterbuck, MOCRA Safety Officer, examines the benefits of carrying one on board, and compares with the conventional anchor.
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Budget charters in Thailand
March 2009

We sailed "Veni Vidi Vici", one of Siam Sailing's Tiki 30's for two weeks in January

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