As the storm clouds loomed overhead and the heavens
opened, the prayers of the many were answered, especially for the organizers
of the PC Classic, and even more so for PC himself. The sun emerged from the
doom and gloom of the thunder, lightening and torrential downpour an hour
before race time. The storm wafted out to sea as sailors and spectators
gathered for yet another legendary day of sailing off the shores of the
Royal Cliff for the 9th Pattaya Mail PC Classic Royal Cliff International
Wood (left) pops the cork on the champagne as everyone breaks into a round
of happy birthday for Peter Cummins (centre). (Photo by Tony Malhotra)
Andrew conducts the singing
of happy birthday as PC prepares to cut the birthday cake prepared in his
Vessels of all types graced the waters off
the Royal Cliff Beach Resort, the largest, the ‘Island Dream’, dwarfed
the smaller Hobies, Nacra’s and the tiny Optimists.
When the day arrived after weeks of publicity and hype,
sailors gathered at the Royal Varuna Yacht Club to register for their former
commodore’s yacht race. As sailors went through last minute checks of
their rigging and sails and placing their names on the register, the sun
shone brightly; however, the thunderheads loomed in the distance casting a
doubt over the mariners.
Unperturbed, the race briefing went ahead at midday as
planned without the presence of Peter Cummins (PC), who opted not to race
this year fearing he might steal the limelight on the water by capsizing.
The fleet of Optimists, Hobies and Nacra’s set sail as the storm cleared,
leaving tranquil seas and only minimal winds. Despite the unforgiving, or
should that be “ungiving” wind god Varune, the day was perfect for
the band played on”, students from Pattaya School No. 3 welcomed sailors
and guests to the Royal Wing shores.
, Kanikar and Ib Ottesen partake in the liquid refreshments offered by
fellow sponsors Carlsberg during the warm afternoon.
& Michael Thensich, Ranjit Chandrasiri, Bruno Keller, Cherie Schloemer
& PC ‘gettin jibby with it!’! (Photo by Tony Malhotra)
Wood and pressmen Colin Hastings, the Big Chilli magazine, Roger Crutchley,
sports editor, Bangkok Post, Peter Cummins, birthday boy and yachting scribe
to the world and Pattaya Mail MD Peter Malhotra. (Photo by Tony Malhotra)
Seventeen, the most technologically advanced multi-hull in the PC Classic
Vathanakul, MD Royal Cliff Beach Resort voices her continuing support for
the PC Classic.
likely group, Nick Bauer, resident manager of the Royal Wing, Dr. Iain
Corness, H.E. Dr. Herbert von Traxl the Austrian Ambassador, Panga
Vathanakul and Bruno Keller take shade from the afternoon sun. (Photo by
flanked by H.E. Miles Kupa, Australian Ambassador to Thailand and Anil Singh
enjoy the ‘stately’ afternoon.
Tony and Vikrom Malhotra plus PC, Anil Singh and Peter present an award of
commendation to Term Chaobankrang, captain of the ‘Island Dream’ for his
acute perception of sea-lore and swift action in rescuing the stranded group
from a sinking speedboat.
sailors rush to register for this year’s Pattaya Mail PC Classic Royal
Cliff Beach Resort International Regatta.
Manit Boonchim, director TAT Central Region 3 and his lovely wife, Vorawan
take time out with Panga Vathanakul, Royal Cliff Beach Resort MD with
directors of the local radio stations, Wittaya Yensabai, of MCOT and Cdr.
Sontaya Siangjuw of Sor Tor Ror 5 Navy radio.
a break in the shade, these lovely ladies look thoroughly relaxed. (Photo by
lulled off the shores of the Royal Cliff as the unforgiving wind god Varune
blew the storm away, but ran out of gust for racing.
The crowds of Pattayans, sponsors and organizers gathered
on the shore of the Royal Cliff Beach Resort’s Royal Wing to witness the
event and partake in the generosity of the sponsored refreshments, Carlsberg
and Coca Cola, and enjoy the food laid on by Chef Walter Thenisch and his
For sailors it appeared to be a relaxing day out on the
bay, with the multi-hulls pulling out the spinnakers to catch what breeze
was available while the kids in the Optimists lulled comfortably in the
waters, taking their time to move through the course.
The platinum sponsors Bruce and Judy Hoppe and crew from
Copeland Corporation, a division of Emerson Electric (Thailand), joined the
action on the water along with race director Richard van den Heuvel on the
Royal Cliff catamaran ‘Island Dream’.
The onshore activities began heating up when more guests
and sponsors arrived to view the race. Most notably, as with any event,
sponsors are of major importance, and it was the smiling faces of Ib and
Kanika Ottesen from the Jomtien Boathouse, Anil and Kavita Singh of LCB1
Container Terminal, representatives from Bartercard Thailand, Ambrose wines,
Manit Boonchim, TAT director central region 3 office and special guests H.E.
Miles Kupa, Australian Ambassador to Thailand and H.E. Dr. Herbert von Traxl
the Austrian Ambassador were seen to be enjoying the afternoon’s
Sponsor Bruce Hoppe, MD Copeland Corporation, a division of Emerson Electric
(Thailand) accepts the token of gratitude from Panga Vathanakul.
Cummins (centre) presents the donation to Robert England, witnessed by H.E.
Barnaby Smith the British ambassador (2nd right), Bruce Hoppe and the PC
of this year’s PC Classic permanent trophy are Marcel Dubbelman (second
right) and Andreas Brockelman (far left) receive the permanent trophy for
winning the top honours in the Monohull and Multihull classes from Santsak
Ngamphiches, advisor to the minister of tourism and sports.
Chamnankij, national sales training manager for Bartercard Thailand accepts
the token of appreciation from Andrew Wood.
Hengtrakul, advisor to the Minister of Tourism and Sports accepts a token of
appreciation on behalf of Pattaya City for the city’s ongoing support.
Singh, GM of LCB Container Terminal 1, Ltd., takes the place of honour among
the sponsors of this year’s Pattaya Mail PC Classic Royal Cliff Beach
Resort International Regatta.
Cummins thanks Panga Vathanakul, MD Royal Cliff Beach Resort for her staunch
support of this legendary event.
Once completed, everyone ventured back to dry land, the
Varunians made their way back to the clubhouse and the others to the bar on
the Royal Wing beach. Among the myriad of speeches and the marching band
from Pattaya School No. 3, the Malhotra family made a presentation of thanks
to the Island Dream’s captain, Term Chaobankrang, commending him for his
acute perception of sea-lore and swift action in rescuing the stranded group
from a sinking speedboat.
More drinking, food, music and celebrations formed part
of the day’s events, which was still far from over as everyone moved off
into the sunset.
After a fun-filled day on the water and on the beach of
the Royal Wing, sailors and guests gathered in the lobby of the Siam
Ballroom, many switching their nautical gear for elegant attire for the
The gala dinner, a beautiful four-course dinner complete
with wine and desert in the shape of a sailboat and live band was held in
the Siam Ballroom of the Royal Cliff Beach Resort in honour of PC and
coinciding with the Varunians gala function to raise funds for the Royal
Varuna Yacht Club.
In the opening speeches, Peter Malhotra, MD of Pattaya
Mail welcomed Santsak Ngampiches, Chanyuth Hengtrakul both advisors to
the Minister of Tourism and Sports, Khun Sopin Theppajug, Associate Judge of
the family and Juvenile Court of Chonburi, Ambassador Herbert von Traxl of
Austria, British Ambassador Barnaby Smith and other dignitaries before he
went on with these words. He said “Today we are privileged to have such a
man amongst us. I speak of none other than beloved Former Commodore Peter
Cummins, loved by many, adored by a few and worshipped by none. But yet
again we are all gathered here to celebrate an event that marks the happy
occasion of this remarkable man’s birthday, which is commemorated this
year by the sailing of the 9th PC Classic Regatta.”
Peter thanked the Platinum Sponsor, Copeland Corporation,
a division of Emerson Electric (Thailand), the Gold Sponsor, Bartercard
Thailand, the Silver Sponsors, Carlsberg Beer, Coca Cola, Ambrose Wine
Limited, LCB Container Terminal 1 Ltd., Rieckermann Thai Engineering Co.
Ltd., Jomtien Boathouse, the Tourism Authority of Thailand, Pattaya City,
the Royal Varuna Yacht Club and most of all the Royal Cliff Beach Resort
‘for services rendered beyond and above any five star establishment could
offer’ and specifically Panga Vathanakul, MD of the Royal Cliff Beach
Resort, a staunch supporter of the PC Classic. She has watched our
preparations from the very start and has offered valuable advice when deemed
necessary. Khun Panga has ensured us of her continued support of the Pattaya
Mail PC Classic Royal Cliff Beach Resort International Regatta for many
years to come.
“The Pattaya Mail came aboard the PC Classic,
for we believe that yacht racing, sailing and cruising are the most
environmentally friendly activities from which Pattaya can benefit. We are
also extremely happy to continue our long and close association with the
Royal Cliff Beach Resort in this, the Ninth Pattaya Mail PC Classic Royal
Cliff Beach Resort International Regatta,” said Peter.
A short speech from Peter Cummins followed as he thanked
everyone for their kind words and the success of the event, before allowing
everyone to begin with their dinner.
During the proceedings, sponsors were presented with
unique gifts of gratitude, a hand carved replica of PC’s beloved OK
Dinghy, complete with mast and sail embedded with the 9th PC Classic logo.
Phanpho, Sherie Ferguson and David Holden take an opportunity for a quick
picture during the evening’s cocktail party.
Ottesen receives her trophy for sponsorship on behalf of the Jomtien
Boathouse and Grill from Peter Malhotra.
lovely ladies all in a row.
Peters, nothing more to be said.
presents RVYC commodore Robert England with a PC Classic OK Dinghy from
former commodore Peter Cummins.
Wood hands George Strampp a donation for his worthwhile project of providing
computers and vital facilities for computer skills & training to the
Phamornsathit (center right) accepts a donation from Panga Vathanakul for
the Happiness Camp, a project that brings teachers and students in the local
community together. They are joined on stage by Sopin Theppajug, associate
judge ofthe Chonburi Youth and Family court (far left), Alvi Sinthuivanik
(center back) and Wannapa Wannasri (far right) co-organisers of the project.
Donations were also made to the George Strampp for his
worthwhile project of providing computers and vital facilities for computer
skills & training to the Bannuantong School, the Happiness Camp project
organized by Kasemsukh Phamornsathit, Alvi Sinthuvanik and Wannapa Wannasri.
On receiving the cheque, a moved Aunty Sai explained that the Happiness Camp
is a project that brings teachers and students in the local community
together to absorb words of advice and join together in activities to build
strong minds, balanced emotions and good character. The camp stresses the
importance of the family and promotes unity. The programs and activities
also impart the philosophy of a balanced viewpoint and teach the
participants that excessive materialism can often lead to unhappiness.
Respect for the environment and preservation of nature are also part of
Happiness Camp’s message.
The most touching part of the donations was made by PC
himself, presenting the Royal Varuna Yacht Club, which he loves so dearly
and considers to be his second home, with a generous contribution towards
the construction of the new clubhouse due to be completed by December 5th as
part of HM the King’s Birthday celebrations. Incumbent commodore, Robert
England, graciously received the donation, witnessed by H.E. Barnaby Smith,
the British ambassador, and the PC Classic committee.
Next up were the trophies for the class winners and the
club Optimist champions for 2002-2003, and the coveted PC Classic Permanent
Trophy, but more about that next week.
An enjoyable evening continued on much longer,
culminating with a surprise birthday cake, the popping of the cork of
champagne to celebrate Peter Cummins birthday (27th March) by Royal Cliff GM
Andrew Wood and Peter Malhotra, MD of the Pattaya Mail. The whole
ballroom burst out singing happy birthday to a man that everyone has grown
to know and love.
The wine flowed and the band played as partygoers danced
into the early hours of Sunday morning.
Read PC’s report of his event next week, as this week
PC is taking a well earned rest in Chiang Mai.