After reviewing Antigua Sailing Week, the Race Committee reveals a new format for 2009

The Stanford Antigua Sailing Week continues to attract top racing boats from around the world to compete for the Lord Nelson’s Trophy. Following on from a successful 2008 edition, a new Race Committee was appointed to review the event and chart the way forward – a new format for 2009.

The 2009 edition will sail off a day earlier for the racing and cruising fleets on Saturday 25 April rather than the traditional Sunday start. There will then follow full five days of racing to culminate on Thursday 30 April. The bareboat fleet will start their regatta on Sunday finishing on Friday, and both divisions will race six days rather than the previous five.

The regatta for the racing boats will comprise a challenging combination of short inshore and longer offshore races, and the traditional Round the Island Race for the Yachting World Trophy will now be completed in one day rather than the traditional two. Redonda, an island dependency of Antigua and Barbuda situated 40 miles offshore, will see racing boats encircling its rocky coast line once again, as the ‘Round Redonda’ Race is reintroduced after many years.

With three distance races – the prologue ‘Guadeloupe to Antigua’ Race, the ‘Round the Island’ Race, and the ‘Round Redonda’ Race – the organisers will be creating a regatta within the regatta with the ‘Antigua Ocean Series’. Special prizes and records will be established for each of these three races and an overall prize. Larger yachts not wanting to compete in the shorter inshore races will be allowed to enter the Ocean Series and compete for these prestigious trophies. Antigua is throwing out a challenge to the world’s top maxis to be the first to establish records for these two new races.

Both racing Division A and Cruising/bareboats Division B will race on new inshore courses around the southern and western coastlines of Antigua. The island’s constant tradewinds guarantee some of the best sailing conditions in the world.

Stanford Antigua Sailing Week will be held 25 April – 2 May 2009.

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