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Sweethearts of the Caribbean and Classic Yacht Regatta

The 28th Sweethearts of the Caribbean Regatta (the only all schooner regatta in the Caribbean), sponsored by Mt. Gay and Road Town Wholesale and run by the West End Yacht Club, was most successful this year. Held on Valentine’s weekend at the Jolly Roger, the combined fleet comprised more than 50 entries – an all time high for the past decade. According to Race Captain Mike Kirk, “The Sweethearts race had an off wind course and winds of 15 to 19 knots. The fleet had ideal conditions to show their graces over the 12-mile course out to Sandy Cay and back to Soper’s Hole. The windward return against the tricky current in the final approach had most boats lee rail under for an exciting finish.” Robbie Hoyt’s 23 year-old St. John schooner Snap took line honors in 1hr 57 minutes with Thomas Bradford’s 83ft Mary Rose, 80 year old Herreshoff design, only two minutes behind. Mary Rose also received the Fletcher Pitts Memorial Trophy.

Following the Sweethearts, 14 single-handers competed in a staggered pursuit format. Winner Julian Davies brought Tiger Maru across the line in 1hr 56 minutes hotly pursued by Marty Halpern in Ruffian in 2nd. The race “Initiative Award” of the day went to Eddie Brockbank who sailed a Laser to 6th place. The ultimate single hander, he had the race committee scrambling for the correct handicap.

On Sunday, winds were gusting to 24 knots for the Classic Yacht Regatta, Wannabes and the Valentines Couples race. Kirk reports, “With 31 entries from 25 ft to 50 ft the sailing instructions were amended to break up the fleets to facilitate room on the start line. The windward/leeward course to Pelican Island gave Robin Tattersall optimal conditions to bring Diva over the line in 2 hr 24mins. His spinnaker run down the channel was a delight to see. These races continue to show the BVI is in the forefront of classic and contemporary boat sailing. The final awards included a special presentation to WEYC “Sweetheart” Nancy Terrell for her many years promoting the Club’s regatta program in the Caribbean media.”

Results:

1st Place winners

Schooners: Class 3 - Seafari IV - Todd Duff

Class 4 - Snap - Robby Hoyt

Class 5 - Mary Rose - Thomas Bradford

Single Handers: Tiger Maru – Julian Davies

Classics: Class 1 - Nicola II – Michael Boyce

Class 2 - Gerda K – Lianna Jarecki

Class 3 - Diva – Robin Tattersall

Class 4 - Ushuaia – Morgan MacDonald

Wannabes: Tempest – John Haravichet

Valentine Couples: Island Rose – Mark Hale

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