The second edition of the Beneteau Cup Hong Kong, supported by AON, has been hailed a huge success with 17 yachts in attendance. Building on the popular inaugural edition in 2021, this year’s event was expanded to include a packed social calendar to complement the enjoyable racing on the water.
Held from 29-30 October, the two-day event was organised by Simpson Marine in conjunction with Beneteau Asia-Pacific, with the support of Aberdeen Boat Club (ABC). The Beneteau Cup Hong Kong has quickly become a highlight of the year for Beneteau yacht owners in the city.
The event’s busy programme included island racing on the first day, a gala dinner with the theme of Pirates of the Caribbean to celebrate Halloween, attractive prizes and awards, a pursuit race on the second day, and an epic prizegiving and farewell sunset party in The Bay Restaurant in Mo Tat Wan on Lamma Island.
Day 1 – Fleet Departure at Round Island Start Line, Southern Hong Kong
As Asia’s biggest Beneteau event, and the most lifestyle-inspired regatta in Hong Kong, the Beneteau Cup Hong Kong is an annual event that aims to build a sense of community among Beneteau owners in Hong Kong and beyond. The intention is to grow the event into an international regatta with owners from China, Taiwan and South-East Asia attending as well.
Day 2 – Pursuit Race and After Race Anchorage in Mo Tat Wan
“It was a delight to take part in the Beneteau Cup last weekend. It not only brought together a number of our Beneteau owners from around Hong Kong but was also a great chance for many of the Simpson team to get out on the water and join the fun. Congratulations to the winners and a big thank you to Beneteau, Aon and all our other sponsors for making the event such a tremendous success. The Beneteau Cup is firmly on the yachting calendar and I even heard a number of comments from other sailors already asking about buying a Beneteau so they can join next year’s event and take part in the best sailing event in Hong Kong. I hope to see you all at the 2023 Beneteau Cup,” says Richard Allen, Group General Manager at Simpson Marine.
“The second edition of the Beneteau Cup Hong Kong has been a real blast! During the two-day event we had the chance to gather our local Beneteau owners and enjoyed some great time together amid racing and parties. This event is all about fun! It was superbly organised by Simpson Marine, our local partner, and I would like to thank them for the great effort and team work they have shown, as well as the Aberdeen Boat Club who were hosting us and managing the races. All this would not have been possible without the support of our many sponsors such as AON Insurance. I would like to thank them for their contributions and I am looking forward to our next collaborations. The Beneteau Cup is surely becoming one of the major events in the yachting community here in Hong Kong. I hope more and more owners of Beneteau sailboats and powerboats will join us for the next edition to share these moments with us,” shares Erwan Her, Sales Director at Beneteau Asia-Pacific.
Day 1 – All ready for the Halloween Party and Awards Ceremony
The line-up of 17 yachts reflected Beneteau’s universally popular fleet of sailing yacht models. Yachts in attendance ranged from a Beneteau First 265 WHITE RABBIT all the way up to Oceanis 51.1 LEGENDE II. The event was raced in two divisions – HKPN A and B – with a ratio of 60:40 of local Hong Kong crews, which is a significant indication of the fast-rising popularity of sailing among local crews.
The event was supported by many notable sponsors with AON the title sponsor and Peters and May and Sevenstar, both experts in marine logistics and global yacht deliveries, supporting in the Marine Partner category.
AON – Title Sponsor of Beneteau Cup Hong Kong 2022
“AON was proud to be the title sponsor of the Beneteau Cup 2022, organised by Simpson Marine, a fantastic sailing event that has become one of Hong Kong’s major fun regattas. It is a privilege and a joy to participate in this successful event, which included two days of fun sailing with champagne conditions, a themed dinner party and BBQ on the beach, all with lovely weather. Thank you to everyone who participated in the event and had a great time with friends and family on their yachts. As Simpson Marine’s strategic partner in Yacht Insurance and General Insurance, we continue to build this mutually supportive relationship. The event provided our team with a great opportunity to connect with our clients. AON continues to support our clients to make better decisions. We look forward to seeing you all again next year,” says Violette Fung, Director of Marine and Logistics (Yacht) at AON.
Fleet of Beneteau Yachts berthing in ABC Middle Island after Day 1 Racing
On day one of the Beneteau Cup Hong Kong, yachts gathered by the Round Island start line and set off racing at 11:00am on Eastern Course number 5, which ran through Chesterman Gate, passing Castle Rock to a Tai Tam Club Mark, then rounding Beaufort Island and Castle Rock passing back through Chesterman Gate and finishing off on Round Island (14.2nm total). After a beautiful morning sailing with Northeasterly winds up to 7-8 knots, all the teams were back at Middle Island ABC Dock by 3:30pm where they enjoyed a relaxed time on the docks with some of the fleet berthed on the ABC pontoon in Middle Island and others mooring close by.
Day 1 – Halloween Party and Awards Ceremony in ABC Middle Island
The Middle Island ABC club was fully set up for a vibrant Halloween banquet party with a “Pirates of the Caribbean” theme, with joyful cheering and celebrations throughout the evening. Guests were greeted by Chris Pooly, Aberdeen Boat Club Commodore, Richard Allen, Simpson Marine General Manager, and Erwan Her, Beneteau Asia-Pacific Sales Director and invited to unwind before the highlight of the evening, the much-awaited day one awards ceremony featuring some attractive awards coming from over 20 award partners.
“It was an honor and a privilege, but also a pure delight for ABC to be selected by Beneteau to host the second Beneteau Cup Hong Kong event over the Halloween weekend. It was a hugely enjoyable occasion for all who participated in and assisted with the two regatta races – helped by the fine weather and followed by a superb French-themed buffet on Saturday and the fun Sunday Beach Party. All redolent of the fun to be had for anyone investing in a Beneteau yacht. The ABC management and staff are proud of the association with Beneteau and thank them greatly for their confidence in us,” says Chris Pooly, Commodore of Aberdeen Boat Club.
Day 1 – Halloween Party and Awards Ceremony, ABC Middle Island
For day one, awards in Division HKPN A went to ICHIBAN, a Beneteau First 405 helmed by Robert Cook (1st place), FOXZHEAD, a Beneteau First 31.7 captained by Tonny Chung (2nd place) – last year’s winner of the Beneteau Cup, and LEGENDE II, an Oceanis 51.1 of Pascal Martin (3rd place).
Division HKPN B prizes were scored by EASY BREEZY II, a Beneteau First 41s5 of Alfred Lau/Castor Kong (1st place), FIVE O ONE, an Oceanis 43 helmed by John Berry (2nd place) and CORAL HARBOUR, an Oceanis 40 of Ming Lou in third.
Additional fun awards for the ‘Best Dressed Crew’ were allocated to May Lau’s LA FOLIA team and Pascal Martin’s LEGENDE II ex aequo.
Easy Breezy II of Alfred Lau and Castor Kong – Winners of Beneteau Cup Hong Kong 2022
Sailability, the official charity of the Beneteau Cup Hong Kong 2022, and was represented by Kay Rawbone, Co-Founder and CEO. The charity, which supports disabled sailors and helps people to access and enjoy the sea no matter what their origin, age, or gender, is well supported by Simpson Marine. The inspiring stories shared by Kay were a great example of the inclusive focus of Sailability, with many regatta participants keen to support this noble initiative.
17 Yachts Raced Together at 2022 Beneteau Cup Hong Kong 2022
Day two started off with great winds of 10 knots and a pursuit race. Start times were set according to each team’s HKPN rating, ranging from 10am to 11:42am, with Course 2 selected for that day by the ABC Race Officer. Course 2 started on the Round Island start line running through Chesterman Gate, Castle Rock to a Tam mark, then a long upwind leg to TCS2 and then back under spinnakers to Castle Rock and onto the Chesterman Gate and finishing at Round Island (18.7nm total). The wind dropped off near the finish making it challenging for a number of crews to cross the line but nearly all the fleet finished within the time limit.
After the teams finished racing the yachts motored through the East Lamma Channel to Mo Tat Wan, Lamma, where a sunset finale party was held in THE BAY restaurant and on the beach.
Day 2 – Grand Finale Sunset BBQ Party with Awards Ceremony and a Water Sports Zone by Decathlon
A very impressive set-up was awaiting the crews with a banquet BBQ party with a free-flowing drinks bar, and DJ. Adding to the spirit of the event, Decathlon had set up a Water Sports Zone on the beach, presenting their newest sailing equipment with an inflatable sailing boat, a range of inflatable SUPs and kayaks ready for the teams to try and experience with the assistance of three instructors from Decathlon.
Congratulations to the Winning Team – Easy Breezy II of Alfred Lau and Castor Kong
After some much-needed rest and relaxation, the crews were ready to find out the results of day two and the overall winners of the event.
Day two awards went to EASY BREEZY II, a First 41s5 helmed by Alfred Lau and Castor Kong, CORAL HARBOUR, an Oceanis 40 of Ming Lou, ARETE, a Sense 46 of Jack Lynch, and LA FOLIA, an Oceanis 35.1 skippered by May Lau.
And the overall prize for the Beneteau Cup Hong Kong 2022 was awarded to EASY BREEZY II with Alfred Lau and Castor Kong. They were closely followed by ICHIBAN (2nd), CORAL HARBOUR (3rd) and FOXZHEAD (4th).
A farewell photo of the teams on day 2 at Mo Tat Wan
“As a new team founded only this summer, we are thrilled to have won our first trophy! We were overwhelmed after winning the HKPN B division by corrected time on Day 1 unexpectedly. The event offered exciting racing, especially the downwind pursuit start on Day 2. Several ropes parted in the strong breeze and we thought it was the end of our chances. But our committed and hardworking team stayed focused and maintained good balance and momentum, avoiding holes near Beaufort Island and Cape D’Aguilar until we caught up all but ARETE by the upwind mark TCS2. Picking the course through the downwind Lo Chau Mun was tricky as our A-sail is relatively small but we still had difficulty gybing it throughout a dead run channel, and the lead changed more than once. We kept it on longer than others, well into the reaching leg after Castle Rock; whether it sped us up or slowed us down we still do not know. And then, within a nautical mile of the finish line, the wind dropped and somehow all three leaders missed the lay line, and it became a tacking game on BF2. Thanks to smaller displacement and obsessive adjustments – at one point a crew or two leaned out to leeward holding just the shrouds – we took the gun. The sailing was topped off by fantastic hospitality on both days and we enjoyed winding down over the free flow of champagne and music and, more importantly, sharing moments with other sailors. It was a great privilege to sail with a great team on an amazing boat. We will surely be back to defend the title next year,” say Alfred Lau and Castor Kong of EASY BREEZY II, the 2022 winners of the Beneteau Cup Hong Kong 2022.
The celebration event lasted until after sunset, which was a spectacular reward for the busy weekend at sea. The crews left for their respective home ports in the evening and kept sharing their enthusiasm for the race and the time spent together long afterwards.
The success of the Beneteau Cup Hong Kong 2022 is unquestionably a mix of several factors: enthusiastic Beneteau owners and their teams, professional handling by the organising parties, spectacular weather and good winds, vibrant social events in scenic locations, and outstanding awards provided by the most renowned partners. These included AON (Title Sponsor), Peters and May and Sevenstar (Marine Partners), and Award Partners including Amore Pacific, CleanMax, Decathlon, Devialet, Farandole, Fortnum & Mason, Frette, Garmin, Lantau Yacht Club, L’Imperatrice, Mazu, Moonzen, Pocari Sweat, Pye, Oliver James, Raze, Rituals, Supergoop!, Toio and Tumi.
See you next year at the Beneteau Cup Hong Kong 2023! Dates and the format will be announced soon.
To see a full overview of the Day 1 & Day 2 results and the Overall Winners, please click here.