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Interview with a Thai TRANSPAC sailor



PHUKET: Local sailor Mr Patinyakorn Buranrom is set to become the first Thai sailor to skipper a yacht in a major international yacht race when he competes this coming week in the Transpacific Yacht Race (TRANSPAC) from Los Angeles to Honolulu.

Mr Patinyakorn Buranrom from Phuket, and a member of Ao Chalong Yacht Club, spoke to the Gazette about the upcoming TRANSPAC race and his experiences as a sailor.

Phuket Gazette: Why do you enjoy sailing?

Mr Patinyakorn Buranrom: Sailing brings me closer to nature and allows me to travel and exercise at the same time.

When did you start sailing?
I started sailing four to five years ago using my friends boat at Ao Chalong Yacht Club.

What do you enjoy the most about professional sailing?
I enjoy the fact that I compete against other professionals and I am able to learn so much from them, which improves my skills as a sailor. I am very fortunate, as not a lot of people have this kind of opportunity. I also share the skills I have learned with other Thai sailors.

How do you feel about the upcoming TRANSPAC race?
I am happy, overwhelmed and excited to be a representative of Thailand at this prestigious race.

How are you preparing for the upcoming TRANSPAC race?
I feel I am quite well prepared. I am heading to the USA to start pre race preparations with my team two weeks before the race starts.

What are your plans after the race?
After the race I plan to take my boat from Honolulu across the Pacific ocean to Queensland in Australia. At the end of this year I plan to compete in a race in Australia.

What are your goals for your sailing career?
I want to set up a Thai racing team that can compete in world sailing events like the Volvo Ocean Race. I want to teach Thai people how to sail.

What’s your favorite boat to race?
I like the catamaran as you can sleep on the boat, it’s comfortable and can accommodate friends if you want to have a party. It’s a fast boat which makes it good for racing.

What makes a good sailor?

First, a sailor should be patient; second, a sailor needs to be able to swim. People who are constantly boat sick do not make good sailors and most importantly you have to love to sail. Sportsmanship is also very important.

What’s the toughest challenge you’ve faced as a sailor?
One day before the King’s Cup in Kata, a huge storm washed a large number of boats ashore, including mine. I was really thinking about pulling out of the competition but luckily my boat was fixed the morning of the race. I was an hour late to the start line but still finished 3rd.

What advice would you give someone who wants to start sailing?

Find a local sailing club. I recommend Ao Chalong Yacht Club, and when I get back to Phuket I am willing to teach anybody.

Mr Patinyakorn will be representing Thailand as Co-skipper on the entry Sansiri, together with Rolex Sydney-Hobart Race veteran and former winner and record holder
Australian Mr Michael Spies.

The first start for TRANSPAC will be on Monday, July 8, with subsequent starts planned for Thursday, July 11 and Saturday, July 13.

To follow the Sansiri boat in real time, click here.

Keep checking the Phuket Gazette’s sports pages, join our Facebook fan page or follow us on Twitter for the latest local, national and international sporting news.

— Anthika Muangrod / Andrew Scott


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