Registration Open! International Optimist Regatta, Clinic & Team Race in St. Thomas, June 15-21, 2020

Photo: Some 113 junior sailors from a dozen nations participated in the 2019 IOR. Credit: Dean Barnes.

Registration is open! The International Optimist Regatta (IOR), presented by EMS (Electronic Merchant Systems) Virgin Islands, and the TOTE Maritime Clinic and Team Race, will take place June 15-21, 2020. More specifically, the Clinic takes place June 15-17, followed by the Team Race, June 18 along with a Parade of Nations and Welcome Party, and IOR, June 19-21.

“The St. Thomas Yacht Club (STYC) and the Virgin Island Sailing Association (VISA) invite sailors to register now for the 2020 IOR, Clinic and Team Race,” says clinic and regatta director, Holly Jenkins. “This will be our 28th annual regatta, marking nearly three decades of providing great skill-sharpening grounds for top sailors and an excellent entry level platform for juniors new to the sport. We look forward to welcoming sailors, their friends and families to the U.S. Virgin Island of St. Thomas and to a fabulous time meeting new friends and most importantly racing with excellent wind, clear seas and great competition.”

Last year, a near record 113 junior sailors from a dozen nations competed. This year, organizers anticipate a similar number. However, the IOR can only accept a maximum of 125 sailors. Therefore, register early at: www.regattanetwork.com/clubmgmt/applet_registration_form.php?regatta_id=19970

Some of the best sailors in the sport are expected to participate in this Caribbean Sailing Association-sanctioned regatta. Sailors can compete in Advanced Red (ages 13-15), Blue (ages 11-12) and White (ages 10 and under) as well as the Beginner Green fleet.

Trophies will be awarded to the top five finishers in the Red, Blue and White classes and top three overall as well as the top place female. Participation awards will be awarded to all Green fleet sailors. Additional awards include the Peter Ives’ Perpetual Trophy (superb sailor/individual) and the Chuck Fuller Sportsmanship Perpetual Trophy.

The IOR is sponsored by EMS Virgin Islands, the U.S. Virgin Islands Department of Tourism, TOTE Maritime and K3 Waterproof Gear.

For charter boats, request and confirm online at www.optistuff.com. Or, contact McLaughlin Boat Works, 1 (423) 875-0740, 1 (423) 875-4040 or Toll Free in the U.S. 1 (800) 784-6478; Email: [email protected] Deadline to reserve charter boats is May 15, 2020.

For coach boat charters, contact Jenkins: [email protected]

Traveling to St. Thomas is easy! The following airlines fly direct from major U.S. cities: American (Charlotte, Chicago, Dallas, Miami, New York, Philadelphia), Delta (Atlanta, New York), jetBlue (Boston, San Juan), Spirit (Fort Lauderdale, Orlando) and United (Chicago, Houston, Newark, Washington Dulles). Airlines connecting St. Thomas to the Caribbean include Air Sunshine, Cape Air, LIAT and Seaborne Airlines.

Available accommodations on St. Thomas include hotels, B&B’s, resorts, villas, condos, VRBO rentals and Airbnb’s. For more information, visit: www.visitusvi.com and usvihta.com

For more information, call (340) 513-2234, Email: [email protected]. Or, for the Notice of Regatta (NOR), Registration Form and other information, visit the St. Thomas Yacht Club web site at stthomasyachtclub.org/sailing/regattas/international-optimist-regatta or Regatta Network: www.regattanetwork.com/clubmgmt/applet_registration_form.php?regatta_id=19970 Please also visit the International Optimist Regatta on Facebook!

Carol_Bareuther
Carol M. Bareuther, RD, is a St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands based marine writer and registered dietitian.