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Changes in the Wind: Tobago Carnival Regatta

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Mocka Jumbies and Rum...

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There is a definite change in the wind direction with the Regatta Promoters’ launch of the Tobago Carnival Regatta to be held in Tobago February 10 to 14, 2009.  This group, transforming what had previously been the called Angostura Sail week, reports that they’ll bring many changes as they pull out every stop to make next year’s Regatta unique.

With the support of the Tobago House of Assembly and the Tourism Development Company of Trinidad and Tobago, along with John Wilson in the UK driving the show in Europe, big names like Ambition Sailing, Ondeck and others are working with the team to raise the bar—with boats ranging in sizes from Melges 24s to Farr 65s all invited to take on the local boys.

As boats make their way across the Atlantic in the ARC race to the Caribbean, the islands of Carriacou, Grenada and Tobago dare them to come further south to take on the some of the Caribbean’s best sailors in their own backyard.

The Southern Caribbean Regatta Circuit 2009 kicks off in Carriacou on January 14 to 18 and the Grenada Sailing Festival takes center stage from January 30 to February 3.  As the 3rd leg of the southern circuit, the Tobago Carnival Regatta may be the last in the line but is certainly not the least.

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One week before the world-renowned Trinidad and Tobago Carnival, international boats will head out to sea to take on their Caribbean rivals as the regional rivalry continues with the Bum Boat challenge.  Young Optis will find a two-day clinic with International coaches and two solid days of top class races in preparation for their seasonal championships.

No one will be left out of the party including daredevil kite boarders and windsurfers.  With Friday and Saturday night ‘fetes’, everyone can join in the fun; with Soca music filling the airways, the natural beat of the regatta is bound to be jumping.

With all this in mind, Regatta Promoters have put plans in place to reserve a place for all.  The Optis will be well taken care of in the Opti Park, where they will be camping for five days, and older Wind Surfers and Kite boarders will have their own camp site in the Wind Park just off the beach.  Not far from Tobago’s most famous beach, Pigeon Point, are many small, medium and large homes, apartments and hotels.  Walking distance from Tobago’s International Airport, this regatta is more than accessible.

Those who want more action are welcomed to stay on in Trinidad to enjoy the greatest show on earth at the birthplace of Carnival with two days of non-stop street parties.  They can leave their boats on the Western Peninsula, Chaguaramas, at any of the world class marinas, and let the Caribbean’s best artisans take care of their boat’s needs while they party their time away. What better way to get ready for weeks of racing ahead?  So catch the wind! It’s just around the next marker. 

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So Caribbean you can almost taste the rum...

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