With the recent dry-ish weather and somewhat consistent NE winds, some sailors were hopeful for a big blow during the Lock Hong Kit Round Ubin Challenge yesterday – the first of 2 races constituting the 2023 CSC Signature Sunday Series. Sadly (and unsurprisingly), an atypical North-Westerly breeze greeted the fleet, coupled with an outgoing tide made the first upwind leg to Serangoon Buoy a most challenging uphill task for all 23 boats participating.
The smallest fleet comprised of 3 beach catamarans. Despite their size, this fleet also boasts the fastest boat to circumnavigate Pulau Ubin in 2023 – Addiction! Her time of 2hr 42min 46sec was sufficient to award her with the first victory of 2023 in the beach catamaran class. Twisted Creature (previously Bad Influence) is Kellie Twigge & Matt Ross’s latest acquisition, swapping one viper for another (presumably faster) to better contend for the 2023 season. They placed a commendable 2nd overall – but will have much to learn on their new machine. In 3rd and just out of podium contention was Zaheera Hashim’s Nacra 15! With the National Catamaran Championships taking place on 11 & 12 February, we look forward to seeing an increase number of catamarans sailing and training over the next few weekends.
In the Multihull Class, we witness the largest congregation of large multihulls since the Trimaran Nationals in 2022! Great to have Corsairs, an M23, a Firefly and a Weta all racing together on the same course. At the top, we welcome back Jaza Too – Skipper Graham Horn has returned after a long break, and is looking forward to being more active in the coming weeks. Coming in a close 2nd is last year’s best Multihull performer, Bula! With most of 2022 being mostly a match-racing series between Bula and Miss Visayan, the return of Jaza Too and introduction of new additions Ragnarok and Kublai Khan to make up 8 boats on the start line certainly bodes well for the Multihull fleet in 2023.
The Keelboat PY Class also had a strong attendance, with 8 boats signing on for the challenge. Unfortunately a rigging issue forced Jonty J to retire, reducing the starting line-up to 7. Despite their best efforts, the strong tide and tricky wind conditions resulted in 2 more boats unable to complete the challenge in the alloted time. Kudos to Nel Blu and Windflirt for giving it their best shot! For the remaining 5 that finished, it was not the top 3 winners that caught our attention. In 5th place, Jen’s Jaunt‘s afternoon jaunt around pulau ubin took a total of 4hr 27min 24sec, only over 2mins short of the time limit! On handicap correction, she missed out on 4th place by a mere 6 seconds to Ikaroa, a Beneteau 381 skippered by another new sailor (Christian Guese) looking to race more often with us. At the peak of the fleet, the smallest keelboat was also the fastest. Brio claimed their first win for the year, beating Olmeto and Southern Light in the process.
It was an intense battle for line honours between Silhouette and Adona. For most of the race, Adona sailed beautifully to lead the fleet around the island. The action began on the northern side of pulau ubin, with the tricky conditions and technical mistakes allowing for overtaking maneuvers on each other all the way to the finish line. Silhouette eventually crossed the line seconds ahead of the J29, but had to settle for 2nd on corrected time – awarding Adona with the LHK Round Ubin Challenge Challenge Trophy 2023. In a distant and comfortable 3rd, well done to Kurt and Gill for circumnavigating Pulau Ubin with Waka Tere 2-up!
Many of us knew him as the no-nonsense International Jury that presides over all of our Regattas – maintaining discipline amongst the sailor s during major events such as the Commodore’s Cup and Ambassadors’ Cup. Armed with a glass of his favourite Red Wine, he regularly takes to his “throne” in a comfy corner of the Ubin Lounge, watching the sailors race along the Johor Straits.
We now celebrate his life and achievements with the annual LHK Round Ubin Challenge (His all-time favourite passage race!), one of three signature passage races that make up our club’s Signature Sunday Series.
Thank you all for participating in this signature event, we now take a break for SailGP, Chinese New Year (and Neptune Regatta) before we resume our overseas racing activities with the inaugural Bintan Regatta on 27-30 January 2023. See you in Indonesia!