Toughest racing yet on Day 3 of Top of the Gulf Regatta

TOP OF THE GULF REGATTA 2014 - another Platu start in light air
© Guy Nowell/Top of the Gulf
It was a tough day at the office for the sailors on Day 3 of the Top of the Gulf Regatta. The 239-strong fleet experienced some of the trickiest conditions yet from hot and dry to storms and oscillating winds causing headaches for the Race Officers on the four courses.

On the keelboat and multihulls course, after a 30 minute delay Race Officer Denis Thompson sent the Ocean Multihulls and Cruising classes on a long course north into Pattaya Bay.

While stretching their legs north, off Jomtien Beach and Ocean Marina Yacht Club the Race Officer laid a windward/ leeward course for IRC 1, IRC 2, IRC 3 and Platu classes.

In five knots of breeze, the classes went into sequence. As they headed to the windward mark the breeze was getting softer and shifty, and after almost two legs of the course Thompson had no option but to abandon the race due to lack of wind.

After a second storm and subsequent delay, Thompson got the fleet underway again but was forced to abandon the race after the wind died, and with that, the fleet was sent back to shore. No results for IRC 1, IRC 2, IRC 3 and Platu classes today.

Meanwhile, Cruising and Ocean Multihulls were still racing and after 2 hours 26 minutes Windstar, skippered by Patinyakorn Buranrom, and his all-Thai crew crossed the line to take Line Honours and the win on corrected time. Their second win in the series sees them move to the top of the standings one point ahead of Lennart Fahlgren's Amanda who finished third in today's race.

Despite Mojo being first to finish in Ocean Mutihulls it was Kirati Assakul's Sonic which took the win on corrected time and sit tied on points in the standings with Radab Kanjanavanit's Cedar Swan. One day to go and the class is positioned for a final day showdown.

The dinghy fleets also struggled in the fickle winds today and in the Hobie Tiger/ Nacra F18 class on Course 2 the honours were shared between Teerapong Watiboonruang/ Pasutee Soompalasri and Damrongsak Vongtim/ Kitsada Vongtim with 1,2 and 2,1 finishes respectively.

Two races for the Single-Handed Monohull Dinghy class and it was Thai Olympian Keerati Bualong who added two more wins to his brace yesterday and leads by four points from Malaysian Ahmad Latif Khan B.Ali Sabri K and Jordan Rumsby, in second and third respectively.

Totsapon Mahawichean/ Sarawut Phetsiri scored 2,1 in today's Double-Handed Monohull Dinghy class to extend their lead at the top while mixed results for Noppakao Poonpat/ Nichapa Waiwai on their 29er see them in third behind Sittisart Ponpan/ Peerapol Vesaka.

On the Optimist course, Malaysian youngster Muhammad Fauzi Bin replaces his compatriot who lead after the first day following a 2,5 scoreline in today's races. Sutida Poonpat sailed well with a 7,3 on the day to improve her place in the overall standings and now sits second, the top Thai sailor, four points ahead of Suthon Yampinid. With just one day to go for the Thailand Optimist National Championship, it is tight at the top and is there for the taking.

After two races in the RS:One Asian Championship Natthaphong Phonoppharat added two more wins to his three the day before and is in a commanding position in the Mens division heading into the final day. Thai youngster Pattaradanai Jinin sits in second after a 2,2 scoreline yesterday.

In the Womens division Hong Kong's Sin Lam Sonia Lo leads after two more wins yesterday with Sarocha Prumprai the top placed Thai in third.

With one more day of racing for all classes, the 10th anniversary regatta is poised for an exciting finish.

For more information, visit www.topofthegulfregatta.com.