Belatrix wins 20th Punta Fuego Regatta
Jun Villanueva’s Ice 52 won the Racing Class at this year’s Punta Fuego Regatta, while Ultra and Tututango topped the Cruising and Ocean Multihull divisions respectively.
Words: Beni Gomez
Photos: Anya Hospitality Group (AHG) / Marvin Manucum
Jun Villanueva and his Belatrix crew with the trophy
Jun Villanueva’s Ice 52 Belatrix, Pablum Lobregat’s Beneteau First 30 Ultra and Roman Azanza’s Fountaine Pajot 40 won the Racing, Cruising and Ocean Multihull classes respectively at this year’s Punta Fuego Regatta. Hosted at Club Punta Fuego, southwest of Manila, the regatta was organised by Punta Fuego Yacht Club and the Philippine Inter-Island Sailing Foundation (Phinsaf).
Registration and cocktails were held at the club’s Traditions and Contradictions Bar and Lounge on the Friday evening, before registration continued on the Saturday morning followed by a competitors briefing.
Belatrix and Hurricane Hunter compete in the Racing class
Rain and light, unstable wind conditions ruled out a windward-leeward race in the morning, before all three classes competed in the Punta Fuego to Fortune Island Race. Belatrix was first on elapsed time in 2hrs 27mins, but finished second in the Racing class on corrected time behind Hurricane Hunter, Albert Altura’s Beneteau First 40.
Guests of the Punta Fuego Regatta
In the Cruising class, Ultra finished first on elapsed and corrected time, ahead of Papaya II, Rene Ticson’s Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 42, and Captain Napoleon, Napoleon Paterakis’ Beneteau Oceanis 40.
In Ocean Multihull, Hans Woldering’s Ikapati finished in 2hrs 58mins, but finished behind Tututango (4hrs 0mins) on corrected time, with Monchu Garcia’s Carino in third place. The day finished with a party at the club’s San Diego Restaurant.
Tututango won the Ocean Multihull division
Rye Lee Caasi, a member of Jerry Rollins’ race management team, said: “It was a fast race for the Racing class and a tough one for the Ocean Multihull class because of the strong tides they experienced while rounding Fortune Island and on the way back.”
On the second day, winds ranged between 10-18 knots, which allowed for a windward-leeward race for the two monohull classes as well as one long race for all three classes. Belatrix topped the Racing class after finishing the shorter race in 38mins, then finished the second, longer race in 1hr 49mins and narrowly pipped Hurricane Hunter on corrected time to win the division and overall trophy.
Ultra, a Beneteau First 30, won the Cruising class
In Cruising, Ultra pipped Papaya II on both elapsed and corrected times to win the shorter race. Papaya II then edged Ultra on both elapsed and corrected times to win the day’s second race, but it wasn’t enough to overtake the division leader.
In Ocean Multihull’s sole race of the day, Tututango claimed the division trophy after finishing first in both elapsed (2hrs 48mins) and corrected times, with Ikapati retiring.
Belatrix, an Ice 52, topped the Racing class
At the awards ceremony, Edgar Krohn and Nichole Sze, Club Punta Fuego’s General Manager and Membership Manager respectively, were joined on the podium by Jerry Rollin and Rye Lee Cassi of the race management team. VIP guests included Mario Daga, Senior Tourism Operations Officer, Department of Tourism – Calabarzon.
“Tourism is now back on its feet. Discover Calabarzon! It’s more fun in Nasugbu! It’s more fun in Punta Fuego!” Daga announced to the cheers of guests and sailors.
Jesus ‘Jun’ Avecilla (second right) belatedly receives the trophy for his 2022 win
The teams were awarded their trophies, while Selma Star skipper Jesus ‘Jun’ Avecilla also attended on the Sunday night to receive his overall trophy for 2022, after last year’s results were re-calculated.
Major sponsors included Anya Resort Tagaytay, MG Grand Hotel Subic, Las Casas de Filipinas and Unioil, while other sponsors included Asahi beer, Niyama Wellness by AHG, Azumi Boutique Hotel, Bali Pure, Winedrop, German Club Manila, Teresa Marble and Kambia Restaurant.