The second day's racing at the BVI Spring regatta was held yesterday in rasting Caribbean sunshine and a 12kt breeze
Back to back racing, roasting Caribbean sunshine and wind touching 12kts at times launched day one of the 33rd BVI Spring Regatta yesterday.
Six races were held for the beach cats, six for the IC-24s, two for the boats on the Norman Race area and four for each class on the Cooper Race area courses, giving a total of 34 races for the 132 boats competing.
Boats on the windward-leeward Cooper Area race course potentially had six course permutations to contend with which could include two possible windward marks, a windward finish line, a leeward finish line and a gate
In the highly competitive sport boat type class C, BVI Melges 24 Mistress Quickly leads taking three firsts and a tie for third. USVI boats Magnificent 7 and Broken Drum are second and third respectively.
Mistress Quickly’s owner Guy Elridge has relinquished the helm to old University friends Barry and Sue Parkin, current Flying Fifteen world champions with five Olympic campaigns between them. Barry Parkin commented: “We sailed last weekend [at the Rolex Regatta] and got to grips with all the crew handling so we came out today and were right on the money.
“All the boat handling was perfect and I felt a bit more relaxed in the boat. I hadn’t sailed for six months before last weekend. We basically started well in the first three races, and sailed pretty solidly upwind in phase with the shifts working towards the right-hand side most of the time which was where there was more pressure and didn’t make any mistakes – which is how you win races.”
In the big boat class A Tom Hill’s Titan XII with Peter Holmberg calling the shots, and occasionally seen at the wheel, took the day leaving Roy E. Disney’s crew on Pyewacket in second place with Chippewa (2,3,4,3) third.
Class C sees Roger Sturgeon’s Reichel-Pugh Rosebud at the top of the tree with Vim second and Aera third. Storm, Bandit and Flirt are tied for fourth place.
Swan 44 Crescendo finished the day leading Class E with two first and two seconds with Lazy Dog only one point behind. Pipe Dream, a BVI racer cruiser, finds itself in the unusual and uncomfortable position of fourth place in Class F with Antiguan Six Metre Trouble leading with three firsts and a fourth. Boomerang is second and Dehlerious is third.
Racing on the Norman Area course were the Performance Cruising, Jib and Main, Bareboat A and B, and Multihull classes. David Brennen, PRO on this course for the second year, heard last year’s request for more racing and responded by setting up courses conducive to squeezing more than one race a day in for all classes.
Such is the geological/topographical nature of the BVI, that many of the marks from previous regattas have been replaced this year by islands on the Norman Race area previously known as the non-spinnaker course.
Spinnakers are now permitted on this course and allow those that don’t want to race back-to-back windward-leeward courses the chance fly a chute perhaps with less practiced or short-handed crew.
The morning’s race saw them racing a triangle course clockwise around the L-shaped Peter Island taking Dead Chest island of “yo ho ho and a bottle of rum” fame to starboard, Carrot Rock on the southern tip of Peter to starboard, around the west end of the islands and back to the start/finish boat.
The second race took the fleet from the start off the west end of Peter Island around Flannagan, north to a mark near Tortola’s Pockwood Pond, South-east to Peter Island’s Great Harbour and then to the finish.
Richard Wooldridge, skipper/owner of Triple Jack, a Kelsall 43, scratch boat in the Multihull fleet, summed up the feelings of much of the fleet after the day’s racing: “Brilliant. A refreshing change. Two thumbs up.”
Richard is doing quite well with Triple Jack in the multihull class but so is Chris White, owner and designer of the Atlantic 55, Javelin. The two boats are currently tied for first place each being credited with a first and a second place finish. Piglet, Joe San Martin’s Newick Teegull 23, follows with six points and Sybarite, a cruising catamaran, is in fourth place.
The Performance Cruising attracted race boats. Natural Magic, David Cook’s Beaneteau First 40.7 led the class today with a first and a second. Wildflower, Ron Noonan’s Sabre 402, won the first race but placed fifth in the second ending the day in second place. Walter and Joy Pierson’s South Wind, a Swan 44, are tied for third place with eight points with Michael and Jonathan Bailey’s Olsen 40 Kracker Jack.
Bareboat A is currently being led by Dunbar in Dot Com. This boat and this man are no strangers to the winners’ circle having done well in past years in the Spring Regatta and winning this week the The Moorings Sailing Festival Cup as the best performing bareboat in the Sailing Festival. Dunbar’s place in this year’s Spring Regatta is not exactly secure as he is followed by just one point by Kenneth Powell in Team BVI and the third place boat, Val Doan’s BVI Yacht Charters, is two points behind.
Joerg Moessnang in a Beneteau OC411, Frevo, is leading Bareboat B taking a first in both races. Northern Lights, sailed by Antony Wright is in second place with a second and a third place finish and Something Hot, a Sun Odyssey 42.2, sailed by Poulie with an all female crew decked in form fitting Heineken green garb is tied for third place with Peter Howe’s Mickey Mouse both with seven points.
Affinity, Jack Desmond’s Swan 48, is clearly in the lead of the Jib and Main class with two first place finishes. Following with a third and a second, is Paul Davis’ Cal 3-30 Wind Glory. Only one point behind is 15 year old Jamie Bibby in Barclay Kats 2.
Sailing on the one-design course were the Beach Cats and the IC24s. This course is a windward-leeward, with gates set at the leeward end of the course. Richard Johnson’s IC24 Stinger ended the day in first place with 11 points but their lead after six races is slim with Brand New Secondhand, sailed by Chris Curreri following with 13 points. Third place is held by Robbie and Mike Hirst of Tortola in Seahawk with 21 points and Geoff Miles’ No Expectations in fourth place with 31 points.
HF Mortgage, a Hobie Tiger sailed by Ibrahim Mustafa, is clearly in the lead of the Beach Cat division with only nine points after six races. The next closest competitor is Wave Magnet, a Nacra 5.8 sailed by Douglas De Reu with 20 points.