The rough sea conditions that preceded this regatta made it tough going for those on their way to Grenada for the event, but during Sailing Week the powerful winds added excitement and challenge to the racing.
On the first two days off Grand Anse on the west side, the boats flew around the courses in the flatter water and Jaguar and Galatea weathered knockdowns, happily without serious repercussions. Fortunately wind speed lessened slightly as boats raced around to the south coast for the last two days, where current and a more exposed shore tend to form bigger seas.
Boats from Antigua, Barbados, Grenada, St Lucia, Trinidad, the UK, the USA, France and Mexico made for an interesting mix and many more nationalities were represented in the crews, which ranged from five on the J24s to 14 on some of the bigger boats.
Three venues ensured a varied after race experience, starting at the Grenada Yacht Club (GYC), historical home for Grenada’s keelboat regatta since the 1960s, for the skippers’ briefing and the first one and a half days of racing. The yachts then raced around Point Saline, to a new venue, Secret Harbour Marina, for a grand pirate party in their newly renovated pool house and a relaxing lay day. On Monday the boats rallied down to the start point outside Prickly Bay Marina for two more days of racing on the south coast, ending the regatta with drummers, great dancing music and fireworks.
Island Water World continued their strong support as title sponsor, and Mount Gay, Secret Harbour, Sea Hawk and Grenada Tourism Authority made each of the four race days special with prizes and promos, while Grenada’s excellent musical talent provided lively band and DJ music for the six nights of parties.
Courses were geared specifically to the different needs of the six classes – with more ‘up downs’ for the spinnaker flying J24s and Racing CSA Class; less, but longer reaching courses for Classic and Cruising (Fun) Classes; and somewhere in between for the very competitive racer Cruiser CSA Classes 1 and 2, who had the option of flying spinnakers. As was the case last year, local boats did extremely well, being very familiar with Grenada’s lovely bays.
Racing CSA Class
Category Five Richard Szyjan (Grenada)
Whistler Peter Lewis (Barbados)
Taz Bernie Evan Wong (Antigua)
Racer Cruiser Class 1
Rapajam Ralph Johnson (Barbados)
Jaguar Peter Morris (Trinidad)
Piccolo Andy Yates (GB)
Racer Cruiser CSA 2
Apero Jason Fletcher (Grenada)*
Sam of Hamble Peter Hopp (GB)
Cricket Sandy Mair (Antigua)
Island Water World Die Hard Robbie Yearwood (Grenada)
Glory Daze Gus Reader (Barbados)
Loose Canon Edgar Roe (St Lucia)
Cruising Class (Fun Class with simplified GSW rating)
Other Business Richard Inniss (Trinidad)
Cavu Mark Van Woerkom (USA)
Alma del Mar Luiz Gonzalez’s (Mexico)
The Blue Peter Mathew Barker (GB)
Galatea Judd Tinius
Lily Maid Micky Jarrod
* With ten out of ten bullets Apero also won the Best Performing Yacht of the regatta.
Author’s note: The logistics of holding the regatta at different venues are complex and this sailing week is lucky to have the support of experienced officials and a large team of volunteers, hailing from more than six different countries. This was the fourth edition of Grenada Sailing Week and feedback from participants is welcome, as the organizers recognize the importance of improving and ensuring that racers continue to ‘Spice it up in Grenada!’