China Sea Race 2016 starts on Wednesday 23 March
This 565nm Category 1 Offshore Race is run under the auspices of RORC, and takes competitors from Hong Hong, China to Subic Bay in the Philippines.
- Wednesday 23 March
Warning Signal 1310hrs
- Sunday 27 March
Location prize giving in Subic Bay Yacht Club 1700hrs
- Wednesday 13 April
Prize giving at RHKYC – Compass Room 1900-2100hrs
Live race tracking
To view in Google Earth, please go to http://yb.tl/rolexchinasea2016.kml
If you would like to view it on your mobile devices, please download the app ‘YB Races’ from the apps store.
The 2016 Rolex China Sea Race will start in Hong Kong’s iconic Victoria Harbour and will finish 565nm later in Subic Bay in the Philippines. This year marks the 28th edition of this biennial Offshore Category 1 race, run under the auspices of RORC since 1972. Organising authority Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club (RHKYC) is hosting 33 local and overseas boats at its Kellett Island base prior to the start, including entries from Australia, China, Japan, Philippines, Russia and Singapore.
The fleet will gather for the start in front of RHKYC’s Kellett Island clubhouse after a demanding preparation period, during which all participants have been scrutineered to ensure that they satisfy the World Sailing Category 1 offshore sailing requirements (with RORC prescriptions).
Renowned as being a tricky race, the China Sea Race typically starts with grey skies in a cool Hong Kong but, after a rough and challenging first night, the skies clear and competitors can enjoy a spinnaker ride under a full moon. Once the fleet approaches the northern coast of the Philippines a strong diurnal breeze kicks in and tactics become supremely important as boats do their utmost to keep moving in the light airs of dawn and dusk.
The boats currently being touted as likely ‘Line Honours’ candidates are RP66 Alive and Banuls 60 catamaran MACH2 although in IRC Racer 0, TP52’s Freefire and Standard Subic Centennial cannot be discounted given the variable conditions approaching the finish, nor can Smith 72, Antipodes. Swan 82 UBOX, although luxurious enough to be placed in IRC Premier, is also tipped by some to lift the Sunday Telegraph Trophy if she hits the right conditions.
Current favourites for IRC Overall (on corrected time under IRC handicap) are Ker 42 Black Baza in IRC Racer 1 and, once again, Alive, however the lottery of conditions as the boats near their destination means that timing is everything and, given a perfect set of circumstances, any of the IRC entries could lift the three-legged China Sea Race trophy.
There are many different motivations for owners and crew to compete in Asia’s blue-water classic, neatly summed up by Black Baza’s Anthony Root, saying “the ultimate satisfaction is the total experience of working together as a team, the adrenaline rush of offshore reaching, harnessing the elements to maximum strategic advantage, and getting the most out of the boat.”
Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club (RHKYC)
Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club (RHKYC) is one of the oldest sports clubs in Hong Kong and is proud of its rich, colourful history, which stretches back over 160 years of social and competitive sailing and rowing.
Photos/Videos by rhkyc.org.hk
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