PHUKET: Frank Pong of China skippered his 75-foot yacht Jelik to first place overall in the hotly-contested Racing class in the opening race of the 20th King’s Cup Regatta today.
“We had a great day and crossed the line well in front of the rest of our class, but even with our heavy handicap we managed a first place on corrected time,” said Pong.
Second overall in the Racing class was Great Britain’s Steve Dodd on Island Fling with former King’s Cup winner Neil Pryde third on Hi Fi.
A record number of 101 boats divided into 13 classes boats started the regatta in reasonable winds, which picked up to 10 to 13 knots off the Kata Beach Resort.
“The wind was light at the start, which was good for a lot of the newcomers in the fleet as many of them are racing for the first time,” said Principal Race Office Howard Elliot.
“We had a good, clean start in winds of six to eight knots which picked up later to between 10 and 15 knots. Towards the end of the day’s racing the winds dropped and we shortened some of the courses.”
Drama came early in the regatta when George Foose’s yacht Freewind broke her boom after it became entangled with the anchor line of the Royal Thai Navy boat being used as one of the marks on the course.
Crew on the Navy boat and Freewind worked frantically to free the yacht, though the broken boom spelled early retirement for Freewind.
It was a disappointing day for the locally-designed and built Firefly 850 catamarans, which have been the center of attention with five of the super-fast boats racing in their own class for the first time.
“The Fireflys didn’t do well today as they prefer more wind,” said Elliot. “The current was very strong out there today and the light winds didn’t suit the Fireflys.”
One of the Fireflys holds the record as the fastest boat in Thai waters, and if the wind picks up as expected in the next few days, some exciting racing is expected between the five entries.
Hong Kong-based owner/skipper Marc Cudennec finished first in the Firefly 850 class on his boat Chi Machine, followed by Bill Phelps on his new boat Twin Sharks with veteran Henry Kay third on Mamba.
Another very fast catamaran racing this year is Benoit Lasaffre’s Atmosphere, which is competing in the Multihull Racing class. It finished almost 90 minutes in front of its nearest rival and will take some catching over the next fours days of racing.
Henry Kaye’s old boat The Sting, which is being sailed by Phillip Day, finished a distant second with Chimera, sailed by Christopher Edwards, in third place.
A large number of Thai sailors are also taking part in this year’s regatta and Lt Peera Sagultem skippered Royal Thai Navy 1 into first place in the highly-competitive IRC2 class.
Rob Taylor’s Minx finished almost eight minutes behind in second place. Third place went to Russian-skippered boat Master Blaster, with Andrey Novoderezhkin at the helm.
Click here for today’s full race results.
‘Always Smile Journey’ raises fund to provide free English classes for underprivileged people
On October 18, the ‘Always Smile Journey’ group and its partners will host an exhibition with plenty of fun activities at the Yak Yai Market, near Chalong Circle, in Phuket. This event was designed to raise funds to provide free English classes for underprivileged people on the island of Phuket on Saturdays and Sundays. The group does not accept donations but aims to raise money through the sales of the products available at the event.
From 2 pm to 8 pm, there will be a number of artists, musicians and performers who will keep the attendees entertained along the way. There will be a short film about His Majesty King Rama 9 as well as fun activities and games for kids and families, which are all free of charge.
The big bike crew is also a part of this event. They will ride a parade from Rawai Beach heading to the market and showcase their gorgeous two-wheel buddies.
One of the highlights of the Always Smile Journey exhibition is the ‘Happening’ artists group, who will draw and paint a picture of the His Majesty King Rama 9 under the name ‘Street Art King Bhumibol’ on a 4×10 meter sign live at the event so the guests will experience this large-scale art in action. The Happening will also offer portrait sketching for the participants.
There will also be some western menus available at the event which will be donated to underprivileged children.
This free English class project has over seven years of experience through its cooperation working with individuals and other charity organizations. Throughout the years, the group visited several areas such as Ban Laem Hoy School, Ban Bopud School and Ban Angthong School in Samui, Surat Thani province, Ban Bueng Ao Oun School and Ban Kakoh Rayong, in Surin province, Jalae Village of Lahu (Muser) in Chiang Rai province, as well as community education centers in Siem Reap, Cambodia and in Luang Prabang, in Laos.
This event is a cooperation between several groups, including Happening, Yak Yai Market and Arrow Media, Tattoo artist group, Thonburi Art School Alumni, International School of Tourism, Suratthani Rajabhat University, big bike group from Phuket, artists/performers/musicians from many provinces as well as several businesses across Phuket.
The world’s fastest growing tourist destinations
PHOTO: Hello Phuket – destined for huge tourist growth in the next six years – fodors.com
In 2018, international tourist arrival traffic grew by 6% to reach a total of 1.4 billion world tourists, according to research by UNWTO World Tourism Barometer. And there’s a lot more to come with international travel predicted to increase by a massive 35% over the next six years to 2025.
But where is all that extra traffic going to go? Which destinations are quiet now that might be swarming with tourists in the years to come? Two destinations in Thailand are set for a prosperous future, according to the data. Whilst almost all the growth is excepted to be to Asian destinations, an under-visited resource for world tourism so far.
Euromonitor data has been used to simulate tourist growth models and reveal the fastest growing projected visitor arrivals in major cities and destinations around the world for 2025, compared to arrival figures in 2018.
In Thailand, Phuket’s tourist traffic is poised to increase up to 85% in the next six years, from nearly 12 million arrivals in 2018 to over 22 million in 2025. Bangkok is predicted to see the 8th most prolific rise in tourist traffic, with arrivals in Bangkok set to swell an additional 68% during the same period. Doha, the capital of Qatar, is set to explode with 104% increase in traffic over the next six years.
The data also predicts that both Bangkok and Phuket will rebound big time in 2020, Phuket in particular with a growth of around 20% for the next year, accord to the data from TravelSupermarket.com.
By 2025 the data predicts that Bangkok will be the world’s #1 tourist destination, a position it’s held before in recent years. The Thai capital will be followed by Singapore, Dubai, Phuket and Kuala Lumpur, making South East Asia the world’s emerging tourism hotspot.
Some of the world’s favourites – New York, Paris, London – will continue to grow their tourist numbers but not at the rate of most Asian destinations.
You can read the full list HERE.
Stats compiled by travelsupermarket.com
Stats compiled by travelsupermarket.com
Rawai beachfront water shut-off tomorrow for mains works
The Phuket Provincial Waterworks Authority says Rawai’s mains water supply will be shut off tomorrow (Tuesday, October 15) as new water pipes are fitted in front of The Title Beach Front condo resort complex on the town’s beachfront.
The mains water supply will be shut off from 9am until 4:30pm along the beachfront strip.
The PWA says the areas affected will be along Wiset Road along the Rawai beachfront road, as well as Soi Yanui and Soi Ruafaed.
Residents and businesses are being urged to collect water for use during the day today, before tomorrow morning’s shut-off.
As usual, the PWA say…“We apologise for any inconvenience caused.”
Contact the Phuket Provincial Waterworks Authority on 076 319173 or 082 7901634 for more details.
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