Many thanks to Fragrant Harbour for their kind permission to use this cracking set of photos of Impala 1 nearing the finish line of the Nations Cup in Hong Kong, with team Canada on board.


Saturday 16th Feb.

Gaston Chan – Mainsheet hand, tactician, reports:

Ls started at the committee boat end of the line 2 seconds after the gun and tacked over immediately as planned.

It was blowing 15 knots, gusting to 20. With a No, 1 up and a flattening reef on it was all meat on the rail to keep the boat upright.
Hard work on the main, keeping her on the edge, easing with every puff….
When we reached the bricks we tacked back to starboard and crossed the whole fleet…
Rainbow was second. They had their No. 2 up with a less heavy crew, Taxi was third.

By TKS we were 10 boat lengths ahead, and extended our lead with a perfect hoist, hugging the old runway to KB.

When it started to look too easy, Ls decided to try a new nationality and do a Chinese gybe.
As we lay on our side Dave reported seeing water go in through the window.
Yan Pui was swimming in the harbour holding on for dear life.
The cockpit was full of water. Only Patrick stayed dry on the high side…
Rainbow reported that our bottom and keel was very clean and smooth as they passed us without pausing to offer any assistance… (more…)


Finding myself in Hong Kong last Saturday I was lucky enough to asked on-board Impala 1 for a quick jaunt around the buoys. Skipper Burrell had other views on our progress – slow – being the only printable word.
Anyway from the totally biased view from Impala 1’s cockpit I can report on the racing. If you are looking for objective, unbiased reporting, try elsewhere.
The weather was dry, bright sun, about 22 degrees, 6 – 8 knots of wind, shorts and knobbly knees on show. (more…)


This took place on Sunday Nov 20th.

Course is HK Island to Starboard, with a number of  racing marks on the southern shore which have to be left to port to keep the yachts out of the very busy shipping lanes. Also there are a couple of small islands which must be left to starboard and a final starboard turning  mark to line the fleet up for the final beat up the harbour from the west.

The starting and handicapping is similar to IOW RTIR with two start lines off the Club House, with an event handicap based on IRC with non IRC boats slotted in as the handicappers see fit.

Simultaneously Starting from the southern point of the island, from the Middle Island clubhouse is the RTIR for outriggers. These are strange craft in which the occupants, eschewing the wind that nature has provided, expend vast amounts of energy paddling the boats along. With gentle coaxing and the offer of rum and coke, and genial relaxed company whilst letting the sails do the work the male paddlers can usually be brought back into the fold. The female paddlers on the other hand strike fear into the souls of the humble and gentle sailing folk. With their highly developed physiques, bulging biceps, and steely eyed, they are best avoided.



The Lipton Trophy – Hong Kong Harbour Saturday 19th November

This is a pursuit race around marks in the harbour in which the boats first sail three triangles of about 1 ½ miles per leg, then between windward/leeward marks about a mile apart until the target finish time of 16.30 is reached; the race is finished when the leading boat next reaches the leeward mark. Starts are staggered from 14.00 hours when the Pandoras set off, with starts every two minutes. Ruffians 14.08; Sonatas 14.12 Impalas go off at 14.22; SB3s 14.30; Etchells and j80’s 14.32, all the way up to IRC 1.51 (yes there are such boats !) at 15.16

It’s a finely tuned system designed to have all fifty-five entrants crossing the finishing line overlapped. As you will see it does not always work out that way.


Hong Kong roundup

An update from the far side of the world: Gaston Chan writes ‘In the summer our wind comes from the south, and Hong Kong Harbour is in a wind shadow, so most of the racing moves to Shelter Cove to the east of Hong Kong.  HHYC runs the Typhoon Series on Read more…

Impala speed record

Following on from our April 1st news item about a proposed rule change, it seems those speedy Impala-sailing rebels from Hong Kong have gone a step further and carried out their own trials… Thanks to David Norton, HK Impala Secretary for the pic.