Sun-filled days and rum-filled nights – that’s how organizers describe the Mount Gay Rum/Boatyard Regatta, set for May 26 to 29.
"We expect between 30 to 35 boats, mostly local and Trini, and we normally get some boats from other islands such as Grenada and Antigua," says Russell Streeter, treasurer of the Barbados Sailing Association, Inc.
The event offers five competitive races for racers, cruisers and charterers.
Streeter says, "Courses are set up in windward/leeward and triangle formations around the geography of the picturesque South Coast of Barbados and in Carlisle Bay, near the capital of Bridgetown. The South Coast, being a bit more exposed, affords sailors strong but consistent breezes and swells over which to navigate, while the wind in the bay is notoriously fluky, making for interesting racing, and any first-timer would be well advised to find some local knowledge for their crew. As usual, there will be five races, two each on Friday and Saturday and one longer one on Sunday."
Though Barbados doesn’t have a public marina, moorings will be available in Carlisle Bay, which is home to the Barbados Yacht Club and The Boatyard – the venue for regatta activities. Special rates are being offered at nearby island hotels. Charter boats are available from Barefoot Yacht Charters in St. Vincent, which has a fleet of 32′ to 46′ Beneteaus, Jeanneaus and Hunters, and also from The Moorings St. Lucia base – both islands being within a day’s sail northwest of Barbados.
"Barbados has some of the best sailing conditions to be found anywhere, with a dependable 15-knot northeast breeze. Add in first-class race management, superb hospitality from the locals and the best spirit on the planet, and it’s easy to see why some people never leave without booking a hotel room for the next year! This year will be no different, with more than enough racing and partying to keep all the crew satisfied," Streeter says.
Entry fee for the regatta is $150, along with a valid CSA (Caribbean Sailing Association) certificate and entry form. For rating certificate forms and/or more information about the event, contact: Barbados Yacht Club, Tel: 246-427-1125 or 246-427-7318, Fax: 246-435-7590; Email: [email protected]; Web: www.barbadosyachtclub.com or www.sailbarbados.com