Anticipation in the sailing world is building as the Gulf of Thailand prepares to welcome sailors from around the region to the 2011 Top of the Gulf Regatta (TOG Regatta). Set to take place 29 April – 3 May at Ocean Marina Yacht Club, Jomtien Beach, Pattaya, the TOG Regatta incorporates the one-design Platu Coronation Cup and Thailand Optimist Nationals.
Hot on the heels of the Phuket King’s Cup Regatta, Royal Langkawi International Regatta and Singapore Straits Regattas, keel boat and multihull sailors from around the region are eying this, the penultimate event of the Asian Yachting Grand Prix Championship, as the ‘one to win’.
Competition is expected to be high as leading sailors from around Asia prepare for 2011 Top of the Gulf Regatta.
“The 2010 Regatta was a great success. We welcomed big fleets of all kinds of boats to the Gulf of Thailand. Planning for the 2011 event is well underway and we are looking forward to another great year. With strong support from host sponsor Ocean Marina Yacht Club, we are expecting to further increase the number of participants in 2011,” said William Gasson, Regatta founder and Chairman of the Organising Committee.
The 2010 TOG Regatta saw a record ‘big boat’ fleet with 51 keelboats and multihulls taking part. Second only in size to the big boat fleet of the 25-year old Phuket King’s Cup Regatta, the TOG Regatta saw over 120 Optimists, dinghies and beach catamarans also take part in 2010, actually making it the largest sailing event in Thailand.
The Top of the Gulf Regatta includes the largest Optimist fleet in Thailand, attracting over 100 junior sailors from around the region each year, to compete for the Thailand Optimist Nationals. Having won individual and Team golds at the recent Optimist World Championships held in Langkawi, Malaysia, Thailand’s sailors are going to be hard to beat.
For the larger boats, racing will be divided into 12 classes covering keelboats, a large cruising fleet, one-design Platus and Ocean Multihulls.
Now in its seventh sailing, the TOG Regatta continues to attract a strong domestic fleet and more international racing yachts each year, in addition to strong dinghy and Hobie classes, and the ultra-competitive one-design Platu class.
Thailand is home to the largest one-design Platu fleet in Asia. Each year the Platu fleet compete for the prestigious Coronation Cup which is an integral part of the TOG Regatta, and which was established in 1996 to celebrate the anniversary of His Majesty the King of Thailand’s Coronation date. At a mere 25-foot, size is not everything for Platu sailors, with top-class sailors coming from all around Asia to take part.
The TOG Regatta is unique, being the only marina-based regatta in Thailand, and one which welcomes boats of all sizes from Optimists and dinghies to beach catamarans, keel boats and ocean multihulls. Participants in the 2011 TOG Regatta are expected to attend from Australia, India, Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand, to name just a few countries.
“We’ve had a lot of interest from entries already and are looking forward to welcoming many international participants across the fleets,” added Gasson.