Corregidor Cup

On the initiative of Albert Altura, the Corregidor Cup, organized by the newly-formed Ocean Racing Club of the Philippines, took place from Friday, the 18th, to Sunday, the 20th of November 2022. It was organised by the new Ocean Racing Club of the Philippines in co-operation with the Corregidor Foundation Inc and Caylabne Bay Resort & Marina.

The fleet gathered at the marina, where the three-day event was based.

The idea was to race around Corregidor and its associated islands, which form part of Fortress Corregidor, established in the late 19th century and early 20thcentury  to protect Manila from seaborne attack. Two important battles took place here during World War II.

The fleet was divided into IRC Racing, CHS Cruising, Classic and Ocean Multihull. Unfortunately, two of the expected Classic Class boats were unable to make it. So, David Wheeler’s 33-foot Cape Carib, Freewheeler, joined the Cruising Class. All races started at Caylabne Bay Resort & Marina while the third race finished at Corregidor.

The start of racing was delayed for just over an hour waiting for the Philippine Coast Guard’s approval for the regatta to take place. After a lot of phone calls and visits to the local Coast Guard office, approval was finally received, and racing went ahead.

One short race and one long race were held on Friday. With a steady 12 to 15-knot northeasterly blowing, all classes rounded Fort Drum (El Fraile Island). First off was the IRC Racing fleet with Belatrix,  Jun Villanueva’s Ice 52, leading the way. The regatta of Albert Altura and his First 40 CR, Hurricane Hunter, got off to a bad start, when he had to retire from Race 1 due to a jammed halyard. Fortunately, this was was fixed in time for the second race of the day.

The longer second race sent the IRC fleet around Corregidor Island and Monja Island, the western-most island in the Corregidor Group. The wind increased to 18 knots with a large squall hitting the fleet in the middle of the afternoon. This seriously tested the crews and equipment but, thankfully, no damage was reported.

In the evening the crews enjoyed a reggae party that had to be moved from the beach to El Patio Restaurant at the last minute due to the rain. Caylabne did a great job in establishing an exciting venue for the official welcome and the awarding of prizes for the day. Every day a bottle of Sailor Jerry’s Spiced Run, accompanying ginger beer and a cocktail shaker, was awarded to each Class winner which were presented by ‘Sailor Jerry’ Rollin, president of the Ocean Racing Club of the Philippines.

The race on Saturday started at Caylabne Bay and finished off Corregidor’s South Beach. Again, with a multitude of different mark roundings, the fleet was again challenged with another squall which, this time, did account for some minor breakages. The Ocean Multihull Fleet were approaching the finish and not laying the mark when the squall hit and the big boats were lifted up to the finish led by Roman Azanza’s TuTuTango, a Leopard 40. The unlucky looser in the squall was Hans Woldring in the  lightweight Izapati, a Balltic 30, which was too close to the finish to take advantage of it!

Corregidor Foundation had prepared a sumptuous lunch for the crews on South Beach followed by guided tours around the preserved island with poignant reminders of the battles fought there during World War II.

The Rock Band, K O Jones, was ready, the stage was set and the dinner prepared. But, again, the weather did not play ball. The rock concert and dinner were cancelled to allow boats to return to the safety of Caylabne Bay Marina. A great disappointment made up, sort of, by a great day’s sailing.

Day 3 again started with 12 to 15 knots as the classes set off around the islands. Following a last-minute request from the fleet, the Cruising Class course was changed to round Corregidor Island with a downwind run of six miles. Wild Honey, James Villereal Beneteau 41, led the fleet around the 23-mile course beating Rene Ticson’s Sun Odyssey 42 by a mere 18 seconds on corrected time to secure the class win from the J/35, Vivaldi.

On the way down the back of Corregidor Island, the Cruising fleet met the IRC fleet that was rounding the other way. A moment commented on and enjoyed by many in the cruising fleet, who rarely see the IRC boats after the start.

In the end, the IRC Racing Class saw a  mixture of race winners with Belatrix winning the class on count back after having equal points with Jun Avecilla’s Beneteau First 36.7, Selma Star.

The Awards Lunch was held on the lawn in front of Kites & Sails. The location being named after the kites that nest around the resort and the sails of the boats that moor there.

The event sponsors were thanked, and their representatives presented the trophies and much more Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum, which went down very well.

Trin Custodio, executive director of World Wildlife Fund for Nature Philippines, presented prizes and was assured of the sailing community’s support for the WWF ideals.

Albert Altura, the initiator of the event, thanked Cathy Tolentino of Caylabne Bay Resort & Marina for hosting the event, Cynthia Carrion of Corregidor Foundation for hosting the fleet on the island and Jerry Rollin for pulling the whole thing together.

Jerry Rollin thanked Pen Avilla and Rye Lee Cassi and the race management team for their work and announced that the next Corregidor Cup would take place from the 16th to the 19th of November 2023.

 
   
 
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