FIFA WORLD CUP 2018 Kata Rocks
Login | Create Account Poll Currency Weather Facebook Youtube Search

Panwa Boonak crowned 2018 Thailand Optimist National Champion

SAILING: One-hundred-and-thirty-one Optimist dinghies competed at the 2018 Top of the Gulf Regatta in Pattaya, all vying for top honours in the Thailand Optimist National Championships, and the three-day competition was fierce, with reigning champion Panwa Boonak (THA) looking to hold off strong challenges from fellow Thai juniors and many of the best young sailors from around Asia.

SailingThe Phuket News

Thursday 3 May 2018, 10:32AM


Panwa Boonak on his way to a consecutive national optimist title. Photo: Guy Nowell

Panwa Boonak on his way to a consecutive national optimist title. Photo: Guy Nowell

Thailand’s premier youth sailing event, the Thailand Optimist National Championships was first launched in 1976 as the Optimist Thailand Championship Cup, and has been held annually since regularly attracting more than 100 sailors each time.

Now, more than 40 years since its first sailing, it remains as competitive as ever and is Thailand’s second oldest annual sailing trophy, the oldest being the Vega Rudder Trophy donated by His Majesty the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej.

The Thailand Optimist National Championships is held as an integral part of the Top of the Gulf Regatta, organised by the Junior Sailing Squadron of Thailand and the Yacht Racing Association of Thailand, and in Thailand is often a gauge of a young sailors prowess and a qualifying event for a regional games.

Having been split into two fleets prior to the first race this year, defending champion Panwa Boonak was in the Gold Fleet and was determined to be one of only a handful of juniors to ever defend the title. A fourth in the first race was a solid start, and he built on that with a first in the second race.

Squalls up to 25 knots and thunder and lightening, while periods when the fleet was becalmed, made the three-day event exceptionally challenging and only one race was completed on Day 2. In that race Panwa managed to secure a bullet and set himself up well for a final day showdown.

QSI International School Phuket

Hong Kong’s Duncan Gregor had a strong start to the series and sat in second place at the end of the first day, but a string of below par performances thereafter saw him to drop and finish fifth overall, one place above another Hong Kong sailor, Casey Law.

As the conditions continued to be tricky, local experience came to the fore and M.L Weka Bhanubandh worked his way up the fleet. A second in Race 3 and third in Race 4 helped him to finish in second place overall and be crowned the top Under 12 sailor. Other fast finishers included Patihan Vorrasart (THA) who placed third overall and Chalisa Krittanai who was one place back in fourth and the top female sailor.

The three days, however, belonged to Panwa Boonak. Never flinching under the pressure a 4,1,1,1,1 scoreline saw him defend his title comfortably and be crowned 2018 Thailand Optimist National Champion at the final prize-giving held at Ocean Marina Yacht Club.

In the Silver Fleet the top three places went to Yoth Srimanchanda (THA), Attasuk Boontawee (THA) and Kritphet Suwannarai (THA), respectively.

 

 

Comment on this story

* Please login to comment. If you do not have an account please register below by simply entering a username, password and email address. You can still leave your comment below at the same time.

Comments Here:
Comments Left:
# Characters
Username:
Password:
E-mail:
Security:

Be the first to comment.

 

Phuket community
Storm lashes Phuket

Seems you have made the same mistake as your competitor newspaper. Wind speeds of 16 km/hr?? Don'...(Read More)


Phuket student takes on survey of public transport, tuk-tuk and taxi fares

I applaud this students initiative and PN for their help. 50 responses should not be a problem. So...(Read More)


Thailand leads MICE surge

Did I miss something? What is this self promoting MICE thing? Passing by all the life threatening...(Read More)


Court seizes B21m more from former Pheu Thai MP, B168mn already seized

Well, some more years the tables will be turned. Then the ex junta generals go to face the same. Aft...(Read More)


Concerns over Phuket wild monkeys as they risk entering homes to steal food

It looks like deporting monkeys to these small islands is a artificial creation of quick natural sta...(Read More)


Government incapable of ending graft, says poll

This Junta Government has all the instruments to end grafts as it is strong in power by side-lining ...(Read More)


Rainbow Warrior arrives in Phuket with a clear message

"Greenpeace's unsolicited & un-needed advice?" Unsolicited, sure, the last thing ...(Read More)


Concerns over Phuket wild monkeys as they risk entering homes to steal food

Curious to see what happens when they dump large batches of monkeys on these uninhabited islands wit...(Read More)


Phuket Opinion: Window dressing

Phukets's tourism success far outstrips the government's ability to manage it. The industry...(Read More)