Volvo Hong Kong to Vietnam Race - She's 21 this year!
Denis Ma’s Bliss arrives in Nha Trang at the finish of the Inaugural Hong Kong to Vietnam Race in 1996
Image: RHKYC / Guy Nowell
Phillip Turner’s Alive,Hong Kong to Vietnam Race 2015 Image: RHKYC / Xaume Olleros
Well-known navigator Alan Tillyer is the only sailor to take to take part in every Hong Kong to Vietnam Race since its inception, racing onboard Antipodes, Sell Side Dream, Island Fling, Drumstick and the FfreeFire. Tillyer was navigator on board FfreeFire when she took Line Honours in that first race. He remembers, “We got line honours but the boats behind us, like Steve Ellis’ Wizard the Sequel, a Bashford 41 and Neil Pryde’s IRC 40 Hi Flyer, came down as the wind was building behind them so they raced down with a lot of extra speed and beat us on the handicap.”
廣為人知的領航員Alan Tillyer是唯一一位每年均會參加賽事的選手，他曾代表Antipodes、Sell Side Dream、Island Fling、Drumstick 及FfreeFire號。Tillyer 亦助FfreeFire號取得首名衝線冠軍；他稱：「雖然我們取得了衝線冠軍，但Steve Ellis的Wizard the Sequel號、Bashford 41和Pryde的Hi Flyer一直緊貼著我們，挑戰我們的差點。」
This year Tillyer is back on board as navigator Geoff Hill’s Santa Cruz 72, Antipodes. Tillyer commented on the forecast that race management is keeping an eye on “I have been keeping a careful eye on some disturbances forecasted to form over on the northern end of the Palawan Islands in the Philippines, which were originally forecasted to move towards Nha Trang. However over the last few weather models, forecasters are still adamant a pretty bullish system is going to form but it’s going to go eastwards towards the Pacific so hopefully the race down to Nha Trang won't be affected. Then I think we will have a nice north-easterly monsoon down the west side of the South China Sea taking us to Nha Trang as we usually do. Possibly it will get a little bit lighter near the finish but I haven't had time to look at the forecasts that accurately yet.”
今年，Tillyer將會為Geoff Hill 的Santa Cruz 72, Antipodes號擔任領航員，Tillyer就天氣問題說到：「我一直在留意菲律賓巴拉望島附近海域的天氣轉變，目前來看是穩定的，但不排除屆時會有所轉變。相信我們可在南中國海，借助東北風的力量把我們順利帶到終點。」
Tillyer expects Antipodes to arrive in Nha Trang by Friday night, adding “The first night is going to be rough. The wind generally is quiet fresh as you come out of Hong Kong due to the wind being funnelled down through the Taiwanese Straits and as you get further out and closer to the continental shelf, the sea state can become very quite tricky and then when you get further out into the deeper water the waves become a lot more regular so sailing becomes a bit easier.”
Tillyer says of the 2017 race “This year there is a range of very nice racing boats and with Phillip Turner’s Alive being a canting keel 66' footer, they in all probability will take Line Honours, then Antipodes, Sam Chan’s TP52 FreeFire and the Wang Bin’s Ubox and Matteo Savelli Mascalzone Latnio both Cookson 50s all rate roughly the same so it'll be a good tussle between these boats to get in to Nha Trang second.”
說到關於2017年的賽事，Tillyer表示：「 我看到有不少勁旅報名參賽，當中有Phillip Turner的Alive號，她是66尺長的canting keel型帆船，他們很有機會勇奪衝線冠軍，其後是Antipodes號、陳永燊的TP52 FreeFire號、王濱的Ubox號和Matteo Savelli 的Mascalzone Latnio，她們都是Cookson 50s型帆船，所以他們有同等機會爭奪第二名。
Both starts on 17 and 18 October will be broadcast live on the Volvo China Coast Race Week Facebook page with commentary by well-known Hong Kong sailor, Laurence Mead.