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Caribbean News – Jan 06

BVI’s Maynard breaks speedsailing
world record

The World Sailing Speed Record Council has ratified two new
World Records in Windsurfing. Finian Maynard (BVI)
now holds the "Outright Nautical Mile Record — Windsurfer" set on
October 15, 2005 at Walvis Bay, Namibia; Time: 1 min 10.12 seconds; Speed:
39.97 Knots. The previous record (34.44 knots) was held by Bjorn Dunkerbeck, November 16, 2004 at Aringa.

The
"Outright Women’s Nautical Mile Record — Windsurfer" now belongs to
Valerie Ghibaudo (FRA) also set on October 15, 2005
at Walvis Bay, Namibia; Time: 1 min 46.92 seconds; Speed: 33.69 Knots.

St. Maarten captains
and crew earn STCW 95 certifications

The staff of Bobby’s Marina Tender Services recently
followed the STCW 95 (Standards of Training, Certification and Watch keeping)
course at the Maritime
School of the West Indies
during several off-season weekends, on their own free time, to comply with
international regulations and requests of cruise ship companies. All the crew
of their boats are now up to date for the ISPN code (security in harbors),
holding fire fighting, first aid, personal safety, and social responsibilities
certificates.

Simpson
Bay Marina, managed by Georgie Adamou, also is
preparing for winter season by becoming the first marina in St.Maarten
to have a complete staff with STCW 95 certificates.

The new
location of the MSWI school is La Palapa
Center & Marina Airport Road 28 Simpson Bay St.Maarten.
Phone: +5995231209,E-mail:
info@MSWI.org

Lower
airfares for the Caribbean?

LIAT CEO Garry Cullen and Chairman Jean Holder recently
announced major changes ahead for LIAT, the regional airline owned jointly by
governments of several Caribbean nations. As
part of its restructuring plan, the airline slashed fares by 20% or more, with
prices as low as $22 one way on some routes now.

Meanwhile, John Wrightington from Caribbean
Sun Airlines and Caribbean Star Airlines assured travel agents who attended the
28th Caribbean Tourism Conference in
St. Thomas that the airline’s
management is reassessing procedures to improve “connectivity”
between long-haul and regional carriers. “We will be cooperating much
more in the future with Air Jamaica
and BWIA,” said Wrightington.

At the
same conference, Spirit Airlines Vice President of Sales and Distribution Marc Cavaliere declared, “We are THE low fare airline of
the Caribbean and the fastest growing airline in the region,” announcing
plans to serve 11 Caribbean destinations within the year from the
United States.

Slippery When Wet wins Carriacou Sailing Series

Three days of stiff competition welcomed sailors from the
region at this year’s Carriacou Sailing Series held November 10-13 at the
Tyrell Bay Marina. Winners were Slippery
When Wet
– Racing Class, Wayward
– Racer/Cruiser Class, Business Machine
– Cruising Class and Jabal
– J24-Class.

The first
day of racing took all skippers and crew in a triangle then West/East in
Tyrell Bay
in winds of 10-12 knots. On day two, gusts up to 18 knots caused three Cruisers
to abandon the race. The remaining Cruisers required more than seven hours, and
the Racing and Racer/Cruiser classes took about half the time, to finish a
course that took them just shy of Petit Martinique then back to
Tyrell Bay.
Three J-24 races held within Tyrell
Bay saw close finishes
with the final order of all three races within four minutes of each other.

Day three
brought medium to heavy winds at 15-20 knots and slightly choppy seas, with
close finishes in all classes.

Sunsail opens sail
cruising school in Tortola

Sunsail opened the Caribbean’s first Royal Yachting
Association-approved sailing school in December at its base in Tortola, the
newest addition to schools the firm already operates in the UK, the Canary
Islands, the Whitsunday Islands (Australia) and Phuket,
Thailand. Open year round, the new school will offer RYA Competent Crew or Day
Skipper courses.

“By
expanding the sailing school, we hope to service not only our clients that
visit us from around the world, but people who live in the Caribbean
that would like to gain formal sailing qualifications” said Nic Parton,
Tortola Base Manager and Sailing
School Principal.

The
course, which runs from 8am Saturday to 5pm Wednesday, costs $680, including
cruising taxes, breakfasts and lunch. Information:
sunsailtortola@surfbvi.com

Budget
Marine donates underwater lights to Ocean Care Foundation

During its 2006 Catalog Launching Party, Budget Marine
donated lights to the Ocean Care Foundation. The St. Maarten-based Foundation
is focusing on documenting the importance of coral reefs and damage from
uncontrolled pollution in an effort to raise public and governmental awareness
of the importance of maintaining an ecological balance for generations to
come. 

BVI Watersports Centre Holds Sailathon & Community Fete

The BVI Watersports Centre
celebrated the 400th Guy Fawkes Day on November 5th at
Manuel Reef, Sea Cows
Bay, Tortola. On dry land, donkey rides and
go-carts, hair braiding, helicopter rides and other attractions entertained
families while 30 young sailors raced at sea. A floating bonfire commemorated
Fawkes’ attempt to blow up the English Houses of Parliament in 1605.

His
Excellency the Governor Tom Macan attended the event,
specifically to spend some time on the water with the young sailors, including
the “Sailability BVI” students. This
group consists of special needs children, challenged physically and/or
mentally, who attend the Watersports Centre weekly,
learning to sail, kayak and drive powerboats.

Kostitch snares
7th St. Croix swim race win

Pan American Gold Medalist Alex Kostich
from Los Angeles,
California won the 10th annual
St. Croix Coral Reef Swim for the seventh year in a row, finishing the
five-mile open water swim in one hour, 37 minutes, and 30 seconds. Sydney
Olympics Gold Medal winner Misty Hyman assisted with event production and led a
relay of Virgin Islands junior swimmers.

More than
120 athletes, ages 13 to 71, from 20 states, territories, and Canadian
provinces competed in the 10th annual race from
Buck Island
to The Buccaneer resort’s beach on the last Sunday in October. Net
proceeds from the event were donated to the Nature Conservancy to be used for
their work protecting coral reefs surrounding St. Croix. www.swimrace.com.

Ellen MacArthur,
Fernando Echavarri Erasun
and Anton Paz Blanco named ISAF Rolex World Sailors of the Year 2005

In a ceremony held on
November 8 in Singapore, the International Sailing Federation and Rolex
announced that Dame Ellen MacArthur of Great Britain and Tornado World
Champions Fernando Echavarri Erasun
and Antón Paz Blanco of Spain are winners of
the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards for 2005.

The three sailors were honored for
their outstanding sailing achievements between 1 September 2004 and 31 August
2005, when MacArthur completed a record-breaking solo sprint around the world
in her maxi-trimaran B&Q and Echavarri and
Paz were crowned Tornado World and European Champions after a string of
outstanding results.

Brief notes:

Tom Gerker
reports that Parts & Power, Tortola is
moving to new premises in Port Purcell, a 10,000 square foot facility with dock
facilities nearby.

Congratulations to Calypso Marine Canvas (Trinidad) Ltd. for receiving
the Industrial Fabrics Associaton’s 2005
International Achievement Award in the Marine Upholstery and Interior Fabric
Products Category for their specialty fabric, Quick Lite..

Business is good…Budget Marine, Curacao has opened a
second store, this one in the new Curacao Marine Services complex to supply
chandlery services supporting the extensive repair facilities of the Marina.

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