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Yacht Club News – May 06

Royal Bermuda Yacht Club welcomes a princess

HRH, The Princess Royal (Princess Anne), President of the Royal Yachting Association, will visit Bermuda at the end of the Centennial Newport Bermuda Race that starts on 16 June in Newport, Rhode Island. More than 250 boats were registered already by early March for the 100 th anniversary event. Her Royal Highness will be the guest of honor at the Newport Bermuda Race Prize giving to be held at Government House on Saturday, June 24 and at associated events. 

Anguilla Youth Sailing Club Starts Opti Training

The Anguilla Youth Sailing Club (AYSC), under the auspices of the Anguilla Sailing Association (ASA), is about to begin Optimist training for youngsters ages seven to 15 in Anguilla. The club, with offices in the ASA building located at Sandy Ground, Anguilla, has purchased eight boats and will be training groups of eight to 12 kids in basic sailing skills using the International class of dinghies known as Optimists.

Donations from sponsors and funds raised by the Annual Anguilla Regatta “Go…Mix Up” both support the program. In addition, the ASA has started the “Kevin Berry Scholarship Fund” to help pay tuition for young people needing financial assistance. All donations made to this fund are matched by the ASA. For more information on the ASA, the AYSC or sailboat racing in Anguilla, visit www.sailanguilla.com

A new look for the Royal BVI Yacht Club Commodore

History was made at the Royal BVI Yacht Club in February when the me mbership unanimously elected Clair Burke as their first female commodore. As treasurer for the past three years, Burke, who is originally from Ireland, guided the club’s finances into a positive balance sheet. She thanked the me mbers for appointing her to follow in the footsteps of retiring commodore Chris Haycraft.

"The Royal BVI Yacht Club means so much to me, as it was one of the first places I was introduced to in the BVI and within hours of joining, I was invited to race with Eddie Brockback on his boat Fast Idiots," Burke said. "The Royal BVI Yacht Club is here for everyone and I hope to encourage more of the BVI to enjoy its benefits."

Burke is an adept sailor, racing her own Laser as well as crewing on IC24s and Pipe Dream, Peter Haycraft’s Sirena 38. Additionally, for the past two years, she has been part of the Doyle BVI/Latitude 18 women’s team that has brought home the title at the women’s Caribbean keel boat championships.

Burke said she hopes to continue the great work of her predecessors although she observed, with a dash of wit, “looking at the pictures on the wall, I’m a bit worried about my hair turning grey.”

News from T&T

The Trinidad and Tobago Sailing Association welcomed a new racing coach from the U.K., Benjamin Todd, who arrived in March for a three-month stay. Association me mbers report that  their 2005/6 racing season has been particularly successful with about 25 to 30 boats participating each week. With good wind conditions, crews have been flying spinnakers on a regular basis in both the Racing and the Racer Cruiser Classes, taking their skills to a higher level this year.

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