KUALA LUMPUR: Peter Gilmour, winner of the inaugural Monsoon Cup in 2005 and runner-up last year, is among 10 skippers confirmed for the Monsoon Cup in Pulau Duyong from Dec 3-7.
Two more skippers will be known after the Malaysian qualifiers from Nov 24-26 and Asian qualifiers from Nov 27-29, also in Pulau Duyong, to complete a 12-team field for the championship, which is the final round of the nine-leg World Match Racing Tour.
In the Monsoon Cup, Gilmour, the two-time World Match Racing Tour champion and record holder for career tour victories with a total of nine, is again expected to renew his rivalry with 2007 Monsoon Cup and Tour winner Ian Williams of Britain, who beat him in the final last year.
Australian Gilmour, helming Team PST, is synonymous with the Monsoon Cup as he had played a pivotal role in bringing the Tour to Malaysian shores. He is also the race advisor for the Monsoon Cup.
Williams of Team Pindar is the leader in the Tour standings on 92 points followed by two Frenchmen, Sebastien Col (88) and Mathieu Richard (77).
In the challenge for the Monsoon Cup, Gilmour will have home support and knowledge of the Pulau Duyong currents to his advantage since he considers the world-class sailing venue here as his “home”.
Williams will be coming into the race in Terengganu with confidence, especially after having signed a deal with AC China Team to be the new skipper of China Team Americas Cup programme for the Louis Vuitton Pacific Series in Auckland next year.
“I am very excited to be joining China Team for the Louis Vuitton Pacific Series. The regatta promises some excellent racing and it is a fantastic opportunity for the new team to start building towards the next multi-challenger, Americas Cup,” said Williams.
Meanwhile in Petaling Jaya, VW Cars Sdn Bhd have lent their support to the Monsoon Cup this year, by sponsoring 30 Volkswagen Touareg 4x4 vehicles, which will be used to ferry VIPs and skippers from various points to the event site during the five-day Monsoon Cup championship.
“We are proud to be one of the principal local sponsors of the Monsoon Cup event, which has over the past three years grown into a prestigious international sailing event,” said VW Cars chief executive officer Datuk Ilyas Mohamad yesterday.
He was speaking at the official hand-over ceremony when presenting a mock key to Gilmour.
More than 100,000 visitors are expected at the event, which will be broadcast live to over 100 countries. — Bernama