The 20th Samui Regatta, organized by Regattas Asia, hit the water again in late
May with over 6o international sailors racing off of Chaweng Beach.
As the post Covid-19 recovery continues, fewer boats are currently travelling
around Asia. However, the pedigree of the Samui Regatta competitors remained
undisputed and included Australian Olympic Sailor Steve McConaghy. With
crews traveling from as a far away as Hong Kong, Australia, Europe and New
Zealand to compete.
In past years, pre-COVID, the Top of the Gulf Regatta was held in Ocean
Marina in Jomtien, making it an interesting two-regatta draw for the sailors
from Hong Kong, who could fly back from Pattaya after the ToG and return to
Samui a couple weeks later. But the ToG has not been held since 2019.
Simon and his partner Kae Wattana of Regattas Asia have never considered
canceling the event as they are bound and determined to promote Koh Samui as
a great sailing destination. The regatta also has long been a boon to the local
economy as sailors spend their hard-earned cash at many of the local
There were five days of racing with a lay day scheduled for Thursday and the
closing party set for the Nora Beach Resort & Spa on Saturday evening.
PRO and race organizer Simon James combined the mixed designs of boats
together into one class for two races; the first was a three-lap windward-leeward
race. And the second was a course that hugged the northern coastline of Samui
rounding Koh Kong to port and heading back to the start boat/finish line.
Racing was scheduled to start at 10am but the wind tempted and teased, pushing
the start back to 11:10am, where there was a more constant breeze. When they
did get going the sailors had between 5-10 knots of breeze on the first race with
the wind gusting to 17 knots in the second.
Sam Chan’s Freefire, a TP52, set the early pace easily winning the first race on
corrected time after handicaps were applied by just oer 2 mins over Terry
Foster’s Tenacious, an Adams 10. McConaghy’s Venture, a Beneteau 40.7