Perfect conditions

The Boase Cohen & Collins Inter-School Sailing Festival took place over the weekend of the 10th and 11th of March 2018. And what a weekend it was: two days of perfect sunny conditions on the race course, with a light easterly breeze on Saturday which increased a little on Sunday with gusts of 12 knots.

Twenty-four teams representing 18 educational establishments from across Hong Kong and Macau battled it out in the 16th annual edition of this event. Racing took place in Deep Water Bay off the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club’s Middle Island clubhouse.

Teams of three boats per school competed in two divisions, with the older sailors in the Feva and younger sailors in the Pico Division.

One hundred and twenty six short, competitive races were sailed over the weekend in the team racing format. In team racing it’s not about who finishes first but having your points add up to the lowest score. So, if one team mate is coming last it’s better to help them out rather than finishing 1st. A low point scoring system is used: the boat that finishes 1st earns 1 point, a boat that finishes 2nd earns 2 points, and so on, with the winning team decided by adding together the points of all the boats in each team.

Saturday saw all teams racing against each other in a round robin format. In the Pico division, Tai Po Regional Squad and the ISF Academy took wins in all their races, pushing them into the Gold fleet going into the final day of racing.

Due to a breakage in the Feva Division, only 16 races were sailed on Saturday; the remaining races were sailed on Sunday morning to decide the Gold and Silver fleets. Island School maintained its winning streak putting its sailors in the Gold fleet.

With gusts funnelling down the gap between Middle Island and Hong Kong Island and diverging into Deep Water Bay, the competitors had to be on their toes to contend with the shifty conditions. There was some tight racing with many tacking battles resulting in quite a few penalties.

In the end, in the Feva Gold Division, the ISF Academy, West Island School and French International School were tied with four wins each, requiring a countback. French International School emerged victorious over West Island School with ISF Academy in 3rd.

In the Pico Gold Division, the Jockey Club Ti-I College won followed by the ISF Academy and Hong Kong Schools Sailing Association in 3rd. Full results can be found at: SAILING FESTIVAL

In preparation for the competition, many of the schools participated in RHKYC sailing programmes throughout the year to get up to standard.

The Inter-School Sailing Festival is also designated a Clean Regatta by the Sailors for the Sea Organisation; a non-profit organisation that educates and empowers boaters to protect and restore our oceans and coastal waters.

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