Tuesday 5 January 2021

Xena wins division in 2020 Around the Island Race

From here

Xena (R), facing off with Zannekin, a fully race-fit Ker-46
New owner, Mark Nie at the helm. Behind: his wife
Zhang Haohan, and son. Others I don't know

ICC building, Kowloon, 108-storey
IFC Building, Central, 88-storey
And so to bed, Central to left, Kowloon to right

So, I'm only two months behind the news... Oh well....
These photos chosen from Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club Facebook page on the race. Thanks to Guy Nowell and Vivian Ngai.

Thursday 8 October 2020

Xena wins Div in China Coast Regatta 2020, 9 to 11 October

In the RHKYC Autumn Regatta 2020. Guy Nowell photo

We sold Xena last year, after ten fun years of racing and cruising, and she’s now owned by Chinese businessman Mark Nie. 

In the China Coast Regatta, over three days starting tomorrow, she’s skippered by Mark and Dominic Law of X-Yachts HK. 

The China Coast Race week this year also included a Cat 3 A-to-A race, in Hong Kong waters, though seems Xena not taking part in that.

Here’s the entries for China Coast Regatta.  34 Entries, pretty good for these Covid days. Note: Four TP52s!

Great to see Xena is being raced regularly. Hope they’re also having cruising fun with their young family, wife Zhang Haohan -- perviously a badminton player for China’s national team -- and their two young children.

She currently rates in IRC 1.208, which is only one pip down from the 1.209 in 2015

LATER (9 Oct): Xena wins first two races. Long geometrics or short island races?

LATER (12 Oct): And wins the Div. Click screenshot to enlarge and clarify...

Click to enlarge and clarify

Monday 11 November 2019

Xena -- with new owners -- at China Cup

Our lovely Xena is in new hands, the family of Mark N.  And in good hands too. We’d only just done the handover, and she was off to the 13th China Cup held in Chinese waters just North-East of Hong Kong, in Shenzhen’s Daya Bay.
She was sailing under the name Zhen Ao Sailing Team A.
Xena led the pack for three days, then came the discards and she sat second, until the final race, which was the decider, and was pipped by just 30 seconds. The other way around and it would’ve been decided on count-back for a Xena win....
So a wonderful second in a big and strong fleet of 21 boats in IRC B.  (Results).  Also screenshot below.
Stevo was skipper as Mark was racing in his 60’ Beneteau. (Zhen Ao Sailing Team).
Here are some photos courtesy Stevo:
The really nice marina berths in Shenzhen

From Stevo: Steveo, Shawn, Tina, Charlie, Wei, Richard, Daguo, Sherman 
and a couple others I didn’t know well. Basically Alpha crew and Xena owner.

Soaking downwind

Stevo: at the helm

From the website (which is real crap. No boat details, no detailed results...
I guess this is Mark’s other boat, the Oceanis 60’ from the CupSite

There was also an Xp-44, Arctic Tern, registered in Xiamen...
The Shenzhen Vanke Longcheer Yacht Club
Daya Bay, Shenzhen

Wednesday 25 September 2019

Victoria Harbour “an ideal stop” for Ocean Race

Volvo boats in harbour racing. January 2017

Volvo boats in the 2017-18 race at the old Kai Tak airport
Thanks to this government’s incompetence there’s no place for
boats in the redevelopments. Way to go Carrie!…

Veteran sailor Karl Kwok is pushing for Hong Kong to be a stopover in the 2012-22 Ocean Race (ex the Volvo Ocean race). [here]
Karl at the Royal Hong Kong Yacht ClubP
That’s his trimaran Beau Geste 

It would sure be a better choice than Qingdao or Sanya which I thought at the time were chosen by folks who naively thought there’d be commercial gains. 

Wednesday 28 February 2018

‘We can do something special’: Hong Kong’s Scallywag takes second in thrilling Volvo Ocean Race battle with AkzoNobe

Scallywag arrives in Auckland, late last night
Hong Kong’s Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag earned second place in the sixth leg of the Volvo Ocean Race after one of the most exciting finishes in the competition’s history, sailing into Auckland, New Zealand last night just two minutes behind winner Team AkzoNobel.
In what was effectively a match race between the two leaders, the lead changed hands multiple times over the last 50 nautical miles with the Dutch boat narrowly managing to hold off a determined David Witt and his crew.
Full story, video and pics >> here in the South China Morning Post (it's free!)
Scallywag is currently running third overall, after a win Melbourne - Hong Kong and second in Hong Kong - Auckland.

Tuesday 12 December 2017

Scallywag’s misconduct charge over ‘Dr Cloggs’ video dropped by sailing body | SCMP

Whoops! The self-righteous virtue signallers strike again! And at our Hong Kong boat. Grouch.
Dee Caffari says it best: "... to have singled out these guys for a charge when it's clear that nobody on their boat felt offended in any way seems misguided to me".
Anyway, the jury judged good...


Sent from my iPhone

Tuesday 14 November 2017

Jamie McWilliam’s Etchells ‘Shrub’ takes overall honours in Around the Island Race

Heading out Victoria Harbour, Round The Island Race

Mates we know on boats we know. 
And congratulations to Jamie for winning overall in his Etchells, Shrub
Good shout out to Vineta with a number of friends aboard:
 McWilliam was delighted with the win and said: "Sailors talk about how the Around the Island Race is never the same but today was really not the same. I thought that Helmuth Hennig's Marten 49 Vineta sailed the best from Green Island to the finish that I have ever seen, I don't think they missed a single thing. There were more lead changes in the Etchells then I ever remember. [Article here]
Meantime I was on the committee boat, Hector Ross, at Stanley Gate, with Claire, Adrienne, Helle and Tove.  Good fun checking all the 230+ boats going by...

Tuesday 31 October 2017

China Cup 2017

Anson and Iris, practice day. 24 June.

Grunta and Forse.  Practice day. 24 June.

Grunta, Keno, passage race, HK-Daya Bay, Shenzhen. 26 June.

Thomas, Gordie, Grunta, Keno, Iris, Anson, Peer.  Longcheer Marina.
End of passage race. 26 June.

Keno studies the courses. 27 June

Jing, Thomas, Gordie, Grunta, Forse.  28 June.

Parked up at the bottom mark, race four. 28 June.

Grunta, Gordie, Forse

Grunta, Gordie, Forse

Jing, Forse, Iris, Grunta, Keno, Mark, Anson

Somewhere in Daya Bay....

Above Photos: courtesy of Peer.  2015 China Cup photos here.

LATER: Photos from the China Cup 2017 website:

Sunday 22 October 2017

Hong Kong’s Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag to tackle Volvo Ocean Race

Scallywag training in Spain last month.
Source: Scallywag Facebook
So Hong Kong has its own boat in the Volvo race starting 22 October, the VO65 "Scallywag" owned by the chairman of Sun Hung Kai, Lee Seng Huang, and skippered by Aussie David Witt. Link here in the South China Morning Post report (free and no registration needed). There's also video of Scallywag training in Spain at that link.  Good stuff!

I met David Witt a few years back when he was here with the other Scallywag the 100-footer, Syd Fisher's ex Ragamuffin which they raced in the Sydney-Hobart.  We were also in few regattas with that Scallywag.  Can still remember them thundering past us at the top mark in a race, cutting inside (legally!) and making us look like we were standing still...

Jing and I also spend a fair bit of time at the stand-up Punchline Comedy club at the Sun Hung Kai Centre in Wanchai, Mr Lee's head office, so heaps of connections!

There's a separate story on the one Hong Kong crew, the backup navigator Tiger Mok, Link here

Sunday 11 June 2017

Chinese club unveils open-ocean yacht race plan at UN conference | South China Morning Post

China plans to start an international sailing competition modelled on two of the world's most challenging open-ocean races – Britain's Fastnet and Australia's Sydney-Hobart – as one of its commitments to protecting the world's oceans.
It's planned to start from Zhongshan Zhoushan Island just south of Shanghai, East of Ningbo. Inaugural race set for second half 2018.

Read on .....
"Chinese club unveils open-ocean yacht race plan at UN conference"| South China Morning Post

Tuesday 23 May 2017

Hong Kong in the Volvo. Yay!

Scallywag crew, skippered by David Witt, will take part in one of sailing’s most prestigious events – which visits Hong Kong in 2018
Hong Kong will have a yacht in the 2017-18 edition of the prestigious Volvo Ocean Race, it was confirmed on Thursday.
Lee Seng Huang, executive chairman of Sun Hung Kai & Co, will run the crew from his supermaxi Scallywag in the round-the-world race, considered one of the most challenging events in sailing.
Hong Kong will be a host city in the event, held every three years, for the first time early next year.
“This campaign will showcase world class competitive offshore sailing in Hong Kong and China with the first time stopovers for the Volvo Race in Hong Kong and Guangzhou. I have every confidence that Team Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag will make Hong Kong proud,” said Lee in a statement issued by organisers.
He hopes the campaign can “promote competitive sailing in Asia and build a long-lasting youth sailing legacy in the region”.
In an interview with the SCMP in January [1], Lee described how he developed a fascination with sailing growing up in Sydney near the start line of the famed Sydney-Hobart Race. He described watching the yachts as “an expensive curiosity”.
Sun Hung Kai & Co executive chairman Lee Seng Huang, owner of Supermaxi Scallywag, and skipper David Witt in the lead-up to the 72nd edition of the Sydney to Hobart race. Photo: Rolex/Daniel Forster.
When renowned Australian sailor Syd Fischer decided to retire and sell his 100-foot yacht Ragamuffin – third in the Sydney-Hobart in 2014 and second in 2015 – Lee stepped in to take over, renaming it Scallywag at the suggestion of his daughter.
Keeping the same crew, the boat has set numerous speed records from its HK base, including a new landmark in the Hong Kong to Hainan race (23 hours, 31 minutes and 52 seconds), third place in the 2016 Sydney-Hobart [3] and most recently smashing the record in the San Fernando Race from Hong Kong to the Philippines by more than 15 hours (34:27.15)
In the Volvo Ocean Race, the crew will race a Volvo Ocean 65, skippered by Scallywag captain David Witt, the Australian who has raced Sydney-Hobart more than 20 times and who last competed in the Volvo race in 1997-98.
“This is a fantastic opportunity for the Scallywag team to represent Hong Kong on a truly global stage,” said Witt in the statement.
“With the race returning to a more traditional route and competing in One Design yachts, we feel that we are capable of achieving something that has been a life-long personal dream.”
The other confirmed entries so far are team AkzoNobel (skippered by Simeon Tienpont, Netherlands), China’s Dongfeng Race Team (Charles Caudrelier, France), Mapfre (Xabi Fernandez, Spain) and Vestas 11th Hour Racing (Charlie Enright, USA).
The race will start from Alicante on 22 October, with the fleet capped at eight Ocean 65 yachts.
Teams will cover a total of 46,000 nautical miles stopping at 12 host cities – including Hong Kong in early 2018 – and finishes in The Hague at the end of June.
“We are delighted that Hong Kong will be represented by a syndicate for the first time, especially as it comes during the first ever Volvo Ocean Race to feature Hong Kong as a leg,” said Richard Mason, chief operating officer of the race.
“With a fast yacht, skippered by an experienced captain and the support of Mr Lee, Scallywag promises to be competitive and we are confident that they will be well supported by the public during their historic stopover in Hong Kong.
A series of races will be held in and around Hong Kong during the stopover including the competition race, a Victoria Harbour race and an Around the Island race.
The boats will be moored at Kai Tak Runway Park, which will be the home of the Volvo Ocean Race Festival, a 15-day carnival that will be free to the public.

Thursday 28 April 2016

Meandering in the Mergui Archipelago, Burma, April 2016

UPDATE (4 May): more photos here at Google Photo
Dallinghoo under (nearly) full sail.  From bow: Jibtop, Jib, Staysail, ForeTop,
ForeSail, Main.  All missing is MainTop.  We sailed with this configuration at
7 knots in 15 knots breeze

L to R: Dom, Noi, Ann, Andrew, Kristy, Michael, Jing,
Sabrina, Ye WinAing, George, Aung Tin Oo

This is the Customs and Immigration at the Thai-Burmese border
at Ranong (Thailand) and Kawtheong (Burma)

Dallinghoo, a fine schooner, 85 feet of prettiness

Late arvo, ghosting into another uninhabited island

Victoria Point (aka Kawtheong)

Kawtheong, Burma

Crew farewell.  Note the cool inflatable fenders

Back at the Boathouse Hotel, Kata Beach Thailand

Kata beach sunset