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St. Croix’s Captain Nick to be honored at International Regatta

Captain Nick Castruccio (left) receiving his 3rd Community Service Award from Commodore Charlie Fischer at the 2012 St. Croix Yacht Club Commodore’s Ball
Captain Nick Castruccio (left) receiving his 3rd Community Service Award from Commodore Charlie Fischer at the 2012 St. Croix Yacht Club Commodore’s Ball

St. Croix’s Captain Nick to be honored at International Regatta
Nick Castruccio, founder and promoter of the St. Croix International Regatta, is the honoree at the twentieth anniversary this November. The inspiration of one St. Croix sailor, Nick had the foresight to get this regatta off the ground. With the help of fellow sailor and businessman Rob Armstrong, they secured Mumm Champagne as the first sponsor. The first Mumm’s Cup Regatta in October 1992 was a three-day event with 69 boats competing. Peter Holmberg of Team Heineken was the overall winner and received his weight in Mumm Champagne. A Tradition was born!

After Mumm withdrew in 1999, the local Innovative Companies stepped up as the main sponsor and Cruzan Rum became the beverage of choice, with the overall winning skipper received his weight in rum instead of champagne.

Captain Castruccio has raced in most every St Croix Yacht Club annual regatta since its inception. For the first two years, he helped run the race committee and made sure things ran smoothly.

“My most memorable moment,” say Castruccio, “came during that first regatta in 1992, when I saw over 50 spinnakers coming downwind. I said to one of my committee members, ‘Look what we started!’”

At 86, this tough sailor is still going strong and plans to race his beloved 32-year-old J30, Annick, in November. Asked how he was preparing for the upcoming regatta, Castruccio said, “I plan to have Annick hauled and get that bottom cleaned!”
Youth sailing has always been Castruccio’s focus and many young sailors at the St. Croix Yacht Club have benefited greatly from his sailing knowledge. Annick, named for his late wife Ann (Ann Nick – get it?) has always been raced by a crew of young sailors, often their first big boat racing experience. For the past decade, his passion has been the Frederiksted Community Boating Program (FCB), a nonprofit sailing program located on the west end of St Croix which teaches local kids to sail.

Due to economic conditions affecting St. Croix, the regatta organizing committee cancelled the annual regatta in February 2012. Later in the month, the Club held their AGM and a new board was elected, bringing with it members whose top priority was to revive the race in time to celebrate its twentieth anniversary.

The St. Croix International Regatta will take place November 9th –11th 2012.  Registration and the traditional Cruzan Rum party are on Thursday November 8th. Dock space is available on the Club T-dock, on a first come first serve basis. Nearby condos are available for just $50 a night. United States Customs and Border Protection will be on site on Thursday afternoon with expedited clearance for our down island competitors. There are live bands all weekend and registration is only $100 for three days of racing.

New this year – the winning skipper will receive his weight in rum for ALL Classes with seven or more boats!

Full details can be found at: www.stcroixyc.com

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