By AsianYachting MultiMedia
Photo by Capt. Marty Rijkuris
02:03:2015 Boracay, Philippines:
Taking only 14hrs 23mins 17secs, Syd Fischer’s Dubois 90 Ragamuffin 90 skippered by David Witt, crossed the finish line at 04:23:17, early Sunday morning, on the 220 nautical mile race. This shaves a whopping 4hrs 29mins 15secs from the previous record set by Frank Pong’s Custom Dibley 75 Jelik back in 2013. Fifteen yachts set off at noon on Saturday from Subic Bay in fantastic downwind conditions. Ragamuffin 90 with its crew of 14, led the fleet out of Subic Bay, where they dropped their spinnakers, turned left and enjoyed fast reaching conditions down through the Verde Island Passage. Then a fast 20 knot run for the last 70 miles to the Boracay finish line. Frank Pong’s Jelik finished at 06:14:01 bettering the record time they set in 2013. All the regular competitors have recorded their fastest race times to Boracay.
When the IRC ratings were applied, Ernesto Echauz’s all Philippine crew on his TP52Standard Insurance Centennial III claimed the handicap stakes, by 7 1/2 minutes from Frank Pong’s Jelik. When they came back together at the finish line, Troy Yaw’s all Malaysian team on Ulumulu skippered by Jeremy Koo, finished only 8 seconds in front ofStandard Insurance Centennial III but having a higher IRC rating were relegated to third place. From there on in, only 30 minutes of corrected time separated the remaining three IRC 1 racers with Ragamuffin 90 ending up in 5th place.
The smaller boats in IRC 2 did not have the luxury off reaching through the Verde Passage on one tack, as the wind clocked around to the East and decreased in strength, slowing them down considerably by the time they reached there. Until that stage in proceedings Fred Kinmonth / Nick Burns Sydney GTS 43 EFG Mandrake and Jonathan Mahony’s Humphries 42 Zanzibar were racing in close company, but Mahony opened the throttle on Zanzibar on the long run to the finish and by clocking in 41 minutes in front claimed the IRC 2 honours, leaving EFG Mandrake in second place. Helmuth Hennig’s Marten 49 Vineta pushed all the way to take IRC 2 line honours but was reduced to third place after handicaps were applied.
The places remained the same in the combined IRC results, with IRC 1 filling the top places, followed by IRC 2 yachts in the same order. The big winner is Ernesto Echauz’s sponsored TP52 Standard Insurance Centennial III picking up the IRC 1 trophy and the Overall IRC award, assisted by the Cebu Pacific cabin crew, while the team of Ragamuffin 90 celebrate their line honours victory and setting the new benchmark time.
Racing continues for the Boracay Cup on Tuesday, with a combination of passage and windward/leeward races over the next four days. The forecast is for brisk North Easterly trade winds and competitors can expect more thrills and spills by the bucket load, which is exactly why they have come here.