With 20 knots of easterly funnelling into bullets of pressure of 25 knots, the second day of the BVI Spring Regatta hosted by Nanny Cay Marina produced some electric action in the Sir Francis Drake Channel.
Pulses were racing, especially in the Melges and IC24 fleet who scampered downwind in a ball of spray, surfing at high speed. With no discard available in the BVI Spring Regatta, keeping clear of trouble was a major factor in the big breeze and the yachts that succeeded faired well on the leaderboard after a windy day in paradise.
There was drama right at the start in Spinnaker Racing 1&2 when Richard Wesslund’s J/120 El Ocaso and Sirena 38, Pipe Dream sailed by Chris Haycraft, suffered a collision in the starting area, which resulted in neither yacht taking part in any of today’s racing. Jacques Roux’s Tartan 10, Sorceress also suffered a dismasting but the crew were all safe and philosophical dockside.
“We thought about getting out tomorrow in a borrowed boat but it wouldn’t be fair to leave the old lady dockside,” joked Roux dockside, referring to the yacht. “We will just have to concentrate on sorting the boat out and having some fun, which won’t be hard!”
Sergio Sagramoso’s J/122, Lazy Dog leads Spinnaker Racing 1, the Puerto Rican Team got away well in the first race to score their fourth bullet of the regatta and finished the day in style by winning again to open up a massive lead in the class.
Debbie Clasen’s Tartan 10, Windemon had an excellent day and leads Spinnaker Racing 2, as Debbie explained dockside in Nanny Cay Marina:
“Although we haven’t sailed together as a team before, the crew are all very familiar with the Tartan 10 and we have some excellent local knowledge on board. Right from the start of the regatta we decided that staying out of trouble was a crucial factor.”
Mark Plaxton’s INTAC from the BVI had an excellent day in Spinnaker Racing 3, scoring three bullets to take a clear lead in the Melges fleet. Plaxton consistently nailed the start and showed excellent skill upwind through short chop before pulling the trigger downwind showing ballistic pace.
In Performance Cruiser 1, Lucy and Christian Reynolds’ British Swan 51, Northern Child started the day in fine form winning the first race of the day, putting pressure on class leader Hamnett Hill’s Canadian Marten 49, Defiance.
“We didn’t do much wrong in today’s first race,” explained Northern Child tactician Ross Applebey. “But we were over the line early in the second race, which didn’t cost us much, but we couldn’t get the time back on Defiance. Northern Child is a good deal heavier than Defiance, so trying to keep up with them in big breeze downwind is not going to happen, especially as they sail the boat so well. We are hoping from some more upwind work in big breeze tomorrow.”
Harold Keating’s J/95, Shamrock VII had a perfect score today, taking all three races in Performance Cruiser 2. Stanford Joines, St.Croix J/36, Paladin had a consistent day but slip back to second overall in the class but only by a single point.
Chuck Pessler’s Team Island Water World Racing from St. Thomas continued to dominate in the IC 24 Class. Pulling clear of the rest of the class and into clear air at the starts was a big factor, however Island Water World Racing didn’t have it all their own way. With Doug McLean’s White Album and Paul Davis’ All In winning individual races today. However, a consistent days racing from Michael Finlay’s Grey Goose was rewarded with second in class after eight races.
In Jib & Main 1, Robert Beltrano’s Swan 53 Nai’a scored two firsts and a second today to lead the class by four points from Stephen Schmidt’s Santa Cruz 70, Hotel California Too. Siebe Noordzy, Nai’a’s navigator comes from Newport and has been coming to the regatta for years:
“I just love coming here, the weather on the East Coast of the States is pretty bad at this time of the year and I love the spirit of the BVI Spring Regatta; it has the right balance of competition and fun. It is my favourite regatta, anywhere in the Caribbean.”
Charlton & Bonanni’s C&C 41, Red Stripe Reba looks unstoppable in Jib & Main 2, scoring two firsts today, the BVI team now leads the class by 11 points. Last year’s class winner, Keith LiGreci’s Girasoli had a great day today, scoring two seconds and a first. Rob and Sandy Butler’s Canadian Beneteau 45, The Lodge scored well to move up to second place ahead of Jim Hoelter’s Alerion Express 33, Nymph.
Three teams from Holland are dominating Bareboat 1. Rene Van Dop’s Dutch Team Aquaholics still lead the class but only by a point from Nautical Ventures, skippered by Matthijs Mulder with Mark Saurens team, Dutch Sailing Events in third place after four races. Team Aquaholics, skipper Rene Van Drop spoke dockside about their regatta:
“We are all friends from Holland but we do have one crew member from Curacao who says he knows the place, but we are not sure!” joked Rene. “We come here first and foremost to have fun and winning is a bonus. We could have come to many other regattas in the Caribbean, but the British Virgin Islands are so beautiful. Before the regatta we spent some time cruising the islands and we have not been disappointed.”
In Bareboat 2, Radboud Crul’s all Dutch team on Dundee are having a tremendous duel with the American team aboard Peter Nielson’s Merlin Kief. After four races, Merlin Kief and Dundee have won two races each but Dundee scored a third in the last race today, leaving Merlin Kief ahead of the class by one point. John Pinheiro’s The Whalers is third in class.
Tonight, the Regatta Village at Nanny Cay Marina will host the Bastanaak Swimwear and Beachwear Show. Not to be missed! The gorgeous models will be followed by the spectacular aerial dance acrobatics of Nichole Raab and if all that gets the crowd too hot, don’t worry, tonight’s live band Quito and the Edge is sponsored by Coca-Cola.
>> RESULTS HERE