BY APB Staff on 19 Dec 2022

The second edition of Swiss Re YMC Alma Mater Race, organised by Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club’s (RHKYC) Young Members Committee, took place on December 18 in Hong Kong’s Victoria Harbour, with a record breaking 62 entries. Despite the extremely chilly weather and a strong monsoon signal in force, 55 of the 62 boats still turned up to the start line. 

Photo by Panda Man / Takumi Images. All rights reserved.

Photo by Panda Man / Takumi Images. All rights reserved.

Race officers said they were glad to see so many yachts participating, despite the forecasted conditions. Competitors enjoyed blue skies and a northerly breeze of around eight to 10 knots within the harbour area.

Photo by Panda Man / Takumi Images. All rights reserved.

Racing on RHKATI handicaps, the boats were given staggered starts at 15-minute intervals with the HKPN division starting first and the fastest IRC boats starting last. Race Officers Mark Dowding and Ian Fleming chose a course that took the fleet from a Club start line, through Lei Yue Mun Gap and round Junk Bay Mark.

Photo by Panda Man / Takumi Images. All rights reserved.

Once the fleet exited the gap, they were met with 18-knot winds near Junk Bay. After passing marks in the harbour, the boats sailed back for a Club finish line.

Photo by Panda Man / Takumi Images. All rights reserved.

Under RHKATI, VX One, Probably the Best University (University of Exeter) helmed by Dion Houghton took the win for the second year, followed by Full Power (University of Manchester) skippered by Sam Chan and then HKSYU Sociology’s Windfall, skippered by Tom Ho. 

Photo by Panda Man / Takumi Images. All rights reserved.

In the HKPN division, Lam Chak Sum’s Voyages 58, representing Hang Seng University of Hong Kong, took the win with another DC 29 Voyages 55 from Hong Kong Sea School (Skippered by Mason Lai) in second and The Farr Side from Glion Institute of Higher Education Switzerland (skippered by Alex Cheung) in third.

Photo by Panda Man / Takumi Images. All rights reserved.

The Alma Mater Race is a racing event for fun, RHKYC’s Nations’ Cup, but in this case, teams are based on their affiliated schools, such as a local university, international school or secondary school, rather than by nation. At least half of the team must have the same affiliation.

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Nine boats represented Hong Kong University, with teams representing the Faculties of Architecture, Medicine and Dentistry, Hornell Hall and Ricci Hall. The second largest participating academic association was Wan Yan College with seven entries followed by St. Joseph’s College with six entries.

The race also attracted some alumni from overseas academic institutions, including Yokohama National University, University of Newcastle, University of Exeter, McGill University, Simon Fraser University, Glion Institute of Higher Education Switzerland, University of Tokyo and University of Cambridge.

www.rhkyc.org.hk