San Juan Offshore Festival is a BIG Hit
Some of the most spectacular maritime events in Puerto Rico’s history have taken place within the natural amphitheater of San Juan Bay, overlooked by the 500-year-old San Felipe del Morro Fort and the scenic Paseo La Princesa Promenade. These nautical pursuits have spanned everything from battles during the Spanish colonization to the more contemporary Columbus Regatta, OpSail Tall Ship Parade, and the famous offshore boat races of the 1980s and ’90s. Now, for the first time since 2006 when the Offshore Super Series (OSS) of U.S. elite racers staged a leg in Puerto Rico, and since 2009 when offshore powerboat racing made a comeback in Puerto Rico (thanks to the launch of the non-profit, Puerto Rico Offshore Series), offshore fans were once again able to view their favorite sport from historic Old San Juan when the three-day San Juan Offshore Festival took place in July.
“The fans of this high-speed adrenalin-pumping sport were able to hear the roar of 13 offshore boat engines and enjoy the speed and competitiveness of such a spectacle. Since the entire circuit was inside the bay and the weather conditions were favorable, the boats were able to achieve very high speeds and fiercely compete,” says Angel Duran, Puerto Rico Offshore Series (PROS) marketing and public relations director for the San Juan Offshore Festival.
The San Juan Offshore Festival attracted many spectators, both on land and in boats at sea, who watched ten out of the 13 registered boats successfully complete the 12-lap circuit.
The San Juan Offshore Festival proved to be a real weekend maritime festival. On Friday, there was an exhibition of the race boats at the terminal of the Pan-American cruise ship dock. Several other nautical organizations manned booths and exhibitions. These included the Puerto Rico In-shore Association, Dragon Boats Federation, Caribbean Radio Control Boat Club, BOSS – Boat & Seamanship School, Natural Resources Department and San Juan Power Squadron. The next day, Saturday, an awesome boat caravan escorted by the Police Department took place from the Pan-American dock to the ramp, where boats were launched into the water for display until racing started at 1:30pm on Sunday.
The next Offshore Festival will take place in Mayaguez from December 7th to 9th. For more information, Email: [email protected] or visit www.prospuertorico.webs.com The organization also has a Facebook page.
WINNERS OF THE 2012 SAN JUAN OFFSHORE FESTIVAL
Overall & Category C (Super Modified –120mph*): Marina Costa Azul
Second Place Category C: Unlimited Marine
Category A (Super Light – 100mph) & Second Place Overall: Thunder Blade/Medalla
Category S (Super Sport Modified – 85 mph) Winner: Villa Marina/Gascot Marine
Second Place Category S: Mobile Marine
Category D (Pleasure Modified – 70 mph) Winner: Storm
Second Place Category D: X-Treme Pantera
Category F (Pleasure Sport ‘Entry Level’ – 60 mph) Winner: Landy Powerboat Transport
Category CC (Center Console – 50/75 mph) Winner: Contender Flichi Auto Party
Second Place Category CC: Hydra Sport Industrial Marine
Carol M. Bareuther, RD, is a St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands based marine writer and registered dietitian.