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Phuket Regatta; Asian Sailors on the Rise

Posted by Vadmin on March 12, 2012
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The Phuket Kings Cup is celebrating 25 years of successful sailing this year. In the early years, the results were dominated by sailors from such countries as UK and Australia, but now there is an increase in the Asian sailors dominating a number of the classes. The regatta grows year-on-year and was recently voted the most popular regatta in Asia. A survey found that 71% of sailors named Thailand as their favourite sailing place, with Pattaya being near the top of their places due to the weather, geography and the beautiful scenery. 

 

This year’s regatta has seen more Thai sailors victorious in their respective classes. The organisers re-introduced dinghy sailing to the regatta for children to enjoy the sport and were rewarded with a large number of Thai children being involved. One of the Thai children who lives in an orphanage won the series and was present for the Royal presentations. Organisers were quick to praise the natural talents of the children, emphasising that they currently lead the world in the Optimist classes and these results were now to be seen in the keelboat fleets.

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The Royal Thai Navy team consistently returned great results and this year achieved another victory in the IRC 2 class, their fourth success in this class. In the IRC 1 class, the Thai boat finished in a very respectable ninth place considering they were up against a world class field of sailors. In the Firefly 850 Sports Class Series, Thai boats occupied two of the top five positions, making them the second most successful country in that class behind Great Britain.

One of the more successful outings for Thai sailing was in the Multihull class. With six boats finishing in the top eleven, they truly showed they are able to compete at an international level. Thai boats were placed second and third in the class behind the Australian winner although without doubt, the most successful class for the Thai sailing community was the Modern Classic Class. The Thai sailors held the top four positions in this class and had five finishing in the top seven.

 

 

 

 

The Cruising Class also brought victory to Thailand with Thai boats finishing first and second and the country’s third boat ending up in fifth. In the Kiteboards Class the Thai competitor finished in a highly creditable second place.

The regatta was highly successful and rewarding for the Thai sailing community. The results from Thai competitors was supplemented by the contribution other Thai sailors made by acting as crew members on other boats. Many foreign skippers paid compliments to their Thai crew members, highlighting their excellent local knowledge of the waters and their ever improving ability as sailors.

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The organisers of the regatta are confident that next year, the regatta will return bigger and better than ever and all the signs point towards more success for the sailors from Thailand. 

 

 

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