Following a sensational Felkin Buoy Race, the 2nd instalment of our Signature Sunday Series also did not disappoint, with a steady North-Easterly Breeze fueling sailors’ attempts to circumnavigate the iconic “Granite Island”. After Pulau Tekong, she is singapore’s second-largest natural island – serving as an easy entry-level passage route for our sailors.
Although the wind conditions were fantastic, the outgoing tide proved too much for exceeding personal best times, with only 1 class establishing a new Round Ubin record. Congratulations to Addiction, a Goodall Viper F16 skippered by Jeremy Perrier. She now holds the quickest timing for a Beach Catamaran in recent years, completing the Round Ubin Course in a record time of 01:07:21, beating Kaze Cat‘s 2021 attempt by a full minute. The class also saw 3 retirements – favourites Blue Bomb had to return to shore right after the start, having lost one of her rudders. Babe also suffered equipment damage after a capsize north of Ubin, resulting in retirement. The 3rd retirement was due to a finger injury – thankfully skipper John Simpson on his Nacra 20 managed to return to shore safely and is in stable condition after a quick stitch-up at the hospital.
The Multihull Class had their fair share of carnage, with Buay Kao La returning to their mooring early due to a hard grounding that most likely damaged their centreboard. A Man-Overboard situation from Kaze was quickly recovered, as skipper Xavier went swimming because of a broken tiller extension. Despite their troubles, she still managed to etch out a 2nd place finish, just behind Jaza Too. By default, Phoenix completed the podium in 3rd. In the overall standings, Jaza Too looks like the run away winner, with 2 bullets from 2 races, Kaze faces an uphill challenge to pry series victory from the leader.
More Man-Overboard action took place in the Keelboat PY Class, as Invictus scrambled to retrieve their bowman after their guardrail snapped. She subsequently retired, and it was all smiles back on shore. At the top end of the fleet, it was an exciting 3-way showdown for line honours between Silhouette, IMP & Sangaree. The little Esse 750’s defenses were IMPenetrable, eventually crossing the line ahead of the 2 larger boats. When the numbers were crunched, Silhouette scored their first-ever podium finish in second place. IMP and Sangaree placed 5th & 6th respectively. Simba continued their fine run from last week’s Felkin Race, scoring a victory in the Round Ubin Race to lead the series by 1 point in the PY Class. She will have to keep a close eye on Remington, whose 3rd place finish positions her as the closest contender. We also cannot write off Silhouette, IMP and Sangaree – their consistent performances over the last 2 weekends puts them only a few points adrift from the top 3.
Red Rum One led from start to finish, lapping up the delightful NE breeze in 1:42:04. This was however not enough to beat her personal best of 1:37:45, registered in last year’s edition. Her efforts rewarded her with a 4th place finish, just outside of podium. Jong Dee‘s non-spinnaker circumnavigation of the island may have proved advantageous after all, considering her 4-up crew configuration. She crossed the line just 8 minutes after Red Rum One, scoring her first victory for 2022 on corrected time. Jellico made it look effortless on the course, as the J24 sauntered into a comfortable 2nd place in just over 2 hours. On handicap, she only just edged out 3rd placed Waka Tere by 14 seconds. The same 3 podium finishers are the closest contenders for the IRC Signature Sunday Series Challenge Plate, with defending champions Waka Tere feeling the heat from Jellico and Jong Dee who are just 1 point behind.
Congratulations to all the winners, we are glad all sailors returned to shore safely with minimal casualties. We are looking forward to an epic conclusion this Sunday as we attempt to circumnavigate Singapore’s largest natural island, Pulau Tekong!