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USA’s Liberty Tops 2005 Scotiabank Caribbean International Optimist Regatta

Keep it simple. That’s the game plan that the USA’s Ian
Liberty used to sail to the top of the fleet at the 14th annual
Scotiabank Caribbean International Optimist Regatta, held June 17 to 19 out of
the St. Thomas Yacht Club, U.S. Virgin Islands. “The conditions are good. The
competition was tough though,” says Liberty, who is a member of the U.S.
Optimist Dinghy Association National Team and sails out of both New Jersey and
Miami, Florida.

58 junior sailors,
ranging in age from 7 to 14 years and hailing from the U.S. mainland, Bermuda,
Puerto Rico, the U.S. and British Virgin Islands, Barbados and Curacao,
competed in age and skill divided fleets: Red (ages 13 to 15), Blue (ages 11
and 12), White (ages 10 and under) and Green (beginner).

Liberty won the
Red Fleet as well as overall, while the USA’s Suzy Reynolds scored second place
in fleet and overall just one point behind Liberty. “We practice together a
lot,” says Reynolds, who lived in Pennsylvania. Bermuda’s Haley Powell landed
third in Red Fleet, also in fleet and overall.

In the Blue Fleet,
Puerto Rico’s Ivan Aponte sailed to an easy lead. His secret? “I didn’t
practice. I did other sports instead like soccer, basketball and surfing.”
Curacao’s Ard Van Aanholt took second in Blue Fleet. “The competition was a lot
stiffer this year,” Van Aanholt says. Puerto Rico’s Ramon Gonzalez rounded out
third place in Blue Fleet.

St. Thomas’ Ian
Barrows won White Fleet. “I’ve been sailing a lot recently, and that helps,”
says Barrows. The USA’s Caterina Cicenia placed second, while Ryan Powell of
Bermuda scored third in White Fleet.

Puerto Rican
sailors dominated the Green Fleet. “I just started sailing and have never
sailed outside of the island before,” says winner, Raul Andres Rios.
Juan-Carlos Perdoma finished second. “I tried not to tack too much because that
can slow you down,” Perdoma says. Paul Christiansen ended third. “My coach told
me to look out for the current by the rocks. When I got near, I sailed so that
current would take me faster,” Christiansen explains.

Regatta director
Karen Rice summed up the excitement of this year’s Scotiabank Caribbean
International Optimist Regatta best when she said, “We had great participation
this year, from the USODA national team members from the states all the way
south to Curacao and of course our friends from Puerto Rico, who brought the
largest contingent of visiting sailors. Locally, we had a large Green Fleet
this year. That’s great to see because it is the newcomers that are the
backbone of a sailing program.”

RED FLEET

1. Ian Liberty, USA (53)

2. Suzy Reynolds, USA (54)

3. Haley Powell, Bermuda (74)

4. Alec Anderson, BVI (97)

5. Mimi Roller, St. John, USVI (111)

6. Jose Nigaglioni, Puerto Rico (121)

7. David Alfonso, Puerto Rico (180)

8. Tyler Rice, St. Thomas, USVI (233)

9. Max Nickbarg, St. John, USVI (234)

BLUE FLEET

1. Ivan Aponte, Puerto Rico (85)

2. Ard Van Aanholt, Curacao (103)

3. R Gonzalez, Puerto Rico (132)

4. Maria Sinagra, USA (164)

5. Fernando Monllor, Puerto Rico (169)

6. Billy Gibbons, St. Croix, USVI (183)

7. William Bailey, St. Thomas, USVI (196)

8. Taylor Palmer, USA (207)

9. Alex Coyle, St. John, USVI (265)

10. Ian Fournier, USA (270)

11. Olin Davis, St. Thomas, USVI (276)

12. Nikki Barnes, St. Thomas, USVI (298)

13. Morgan Bryan, St. Croix, USVI (310)

14. Carmen Rivera, Puerto Rico (333)

15. Marina Peniza, Puerto Rico (360)

16. Gustavo Zuloaga, USA (390)

17. Philip Mastereid, Barbados (409)

WHITE FLEET

1. Ian Barrows, St. Thomas, USVI (131)

2. Catrina Cicenia, USA (198)

3. Ryan Powell, Bermuda (217)

4. Just Van Aanholt, Curacao (231)

5. Haomi Zenderman, USA (281)

6. Mack Bryan, St. Croix, USVI (355)

7. Armando Collazo, Puerto Rico, USVI (367)

8. Christopher Cilliers, St. Thomas, USVI (391)

9. Challis Diaz, St. Croix, USVI (426)

10. Victor Aponte, Puerto Rico (433)

11. Lucas Kelly, USA (446)

12. Jaime Ramon, USA (470)

GREEN FLEET

1. Raul Andres Rios, Puerto Rico (15)

2. Juan-Carlos Perdoma, Puerto Rico (28)

3. Paul Christiansen, Puerto Rico (58)

4. Michael Coogan, Puerto Rico (58)

5. Aspen Moore, St. John, USVI (58)

6. Manuel Gonzalez, Puerto Rico (77)

7. Abel Phillips, St. John, USVI (78)

8. Andre Reguero, Puerto Rico (87)

9. Odile Van Aanholt, Curacao (89)

10. Alexandra Siebels, Curacao (102)

11. Coral Breuning, St. John, USVI (136)

12. Kelsey Morrison, St. Thomas, USVI (148)

13. Nicholas Gartner, St. Thomas, USVI (156)

14. Catherine Phelan, St. Thomas, USVI (161)

15. William Van Rensselaer, St. Thomas, USVI (178)

16. Adam Chan, St. Thomas, USVI (187)

17. Tristan Miller, St. Thomas, USVI (190)

18. Nick Keel, St. Thomas, USVI (202)

19. Brianna Olive, St. Thomas, USVI (213)

20. Nicolle Wiebracht, St. Thomas, USVI (230)

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