HONG KONG-BASED 100ft super maxi Scallywag finished this year’s San Fernando Race in 34 hours 27 minutes and 17 seconds to smash the race record by almost 15½ hours. Sam Chan’s 70ft ULDB Sled FfreeFire set the previous record of 49h 55m 12s in 2001.
It’s the second Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club race record that Scallywag holds, Seng Huang Lee having raced her way into the record books in last November’s Hong Kong to Hainan Race with a time of 23h 31m 52s.
Scallywag also won division IRC 0 and the coveted IRC Overall title in the 40th Anniversary San Fernando Race, which starts in Hong Kong and finishes in the Philippines.
After arriving in San Fernando, Scallywag skipper David Witt said: “Today’s sailing was very nice – flat water, perfect sailing, good sunrise this morning and a nice sunset tonight. The first night was a little rough and we had a bit of a major structural failure, but we managed to get here in one piece so it’s all very good.”
Lee’s nephew, Jack Chen, was delighted to complete his first offshore race. “I’m very happy, very excited ... I absolutely loved it.”
Ernesto Echauz’s TP52 Standard Insurance Centennial of the Philippines finished second in IRC 0, finishing 28 minutes ahead of Chan’s TP52 FreeFire.
Steve Manning and Anthony Roots’ Custom Ker 42 Black Baza won IRC 1 Overall and was second in IRC Overall. She was followed by the Mills 41 Ambush owned by Joachim Isler and Andrew Taylor, and the GTS 43 Mandrake III owned by Fred Kinmonth and Nick Burns.
Manning said: “The race was spectacular. We had a great start leaving Hong Kong and were in the front of the pack through to and past Waglan. Then, as predicted, the weather got very lumpy, we had a reasonably close reach the first night which was very uncomfortable, but everyone held on to their stomachs.
“We had one of the most beautiful sails we have ever had last night, today and into the finish. We managed to get a plan to miss all the major park-ups and were able to keep us going all the time with no stops. We’re very happy with the results. And for Scallywag, with those conditions, it was perfect to break records.”
Moonblue 2 was the first boat to arrive in the IRC Premier Cruising division, while Anthony Day’s XC50 Explorer won the Premier Cruising division.
The biennial race supports the San Fernando Race Foundation, which provides funds for the Faith Rescue Home in San Fernando.