LANGKAWI, 7 JANUARY 2020 – This year the RLIR was renamed the ‘Belt and Road Royal Langkawi International Regatta’. Immediately before the first race one minute of silence was held at 9.25am in honor of and to pay respect to Capt Marty who passed away recently. Capt Marty covered the Royal Langkawi International Regatta with his detailed and well written reporting from the beginning 18 years ago. He will be sorely missed.
There are 29 registered boats in seven classes racing for up to 12 races during the week. Participants come from 9 countries (Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore, Australia, Netherlands, Russia, Japan, Austria and China) making this a truly international event. Eight of the registered boats are newcomers/first timers with My Gadis in the Sports boat class skippered and crewed by ladies only.
Principal Race Officer Simon James kicked off the first day’s racing at 9.40am in Kuah Harbour. The regatta enjoyed perfect racing conditions starting with 10 knots of wind picking up to about 20 knots by 11.30am and then steadily falling away until the end of the racing for the day at about 2pm.
Due to the great wind conditions Racing class, IRC1, IRC2, Sports boat and multihulls were able to participate in three races today, Club Cruising and White Sail managed two races.
Last year’s Racing Class winner and recipient of the Prime Minister’s Challenge Trophy, Team Hollywood, skippered by Ray won all three races today, but a successful protest lodged by THA72 saw them relegated to third place. EfileConnect moved into first place followed by THA72 in second place.
Today’s winner in the IRC1 class is regular participant Char Chan skippered by Kazuki Kihara who won two of today’s three races followed by Vincent Chan’s Mata Hari, last year’s overall winner in this class.
Niels Degenkolw’s Phoenix, another regular participant in IRC2, topped the table followed by Jeremy Camps ‘The Blue Angel’. Phoenix won the first two races but ‘The Blue Angel’ took the honours in the third race with lighter airs.
MSA-MSN, one of the Malaysian navy boats, secured the first place in the Sports Boat class, and Fetz Ma skippered by Gerhard Pils led the smallest boat in the regatta to victory after Multihull Allegro broke the start line in the second race.
Wind of Change came first in the Club Class ahead of VG Offshore and today’s winner of the Classic Division in the White Sail class is Gwell.
All in all a great start for this year’s regatta, the first international event on the annual Malaysian Tourism Calendar.
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