The Golden Rock Regatta is back. After its successful debut in 2005, the race between St Maarten, Statia, St Kitts and St Barths will return on November 10 th with an extended program.
Organised by the Flevomare Yacht Club in Holland, Captain Oliver’s Yacht Club in St Martin and the St Kitts and Nevis Boating Association, the regatta coincides with celebrations on St Eustatius to mark the arrival of the Andrew Dorea. This vessel arrived in Statia on 16 November 1776 bearing a fresh copy of the Declaration of Independence, and was famously given an 11-gun salute from Fort Oranje – the first time in history a US-flagged vessel was recognized by a foreign power.
The Golden Rock Regatta has one eye on history, and the other on great racing, with crews coming from the Caribbean and Europe to compete. This year, a week of racing has been added prior to the Golden Rock series to cater to St Maarten sailors and coincide with St Maarten Day celebrations on November 11. There will be windward/leeward courses off Oyster Pond on day one, Oyster Pond to Great Bay race (anticlockwise) on day two, and windward/leeward off Fort Amsterdam on day three.
On November 13 th, the real business begins with a pursuit race from Great Bay to St Eustatius. The following day, boats will race to St Kitts in search of the Carib Beer Trophy, followed by a race from St Kitts to St Barths on November 15. Boats will race back to Statia on the 16 th for the Statia First Salute Race, then back to St Maarten on the 17 th. Grueling, indeed, but four islands in five days is a fresh challenge.
Racing will be divided into two Bareboat classes, two Open classes (with or without spinnaker) and a Cool Class.