by Louay Habib
Lay Day at the 2013 Antigua Sailing Week will take place on Pigeon Beach on 1st May 2013. There will be joy for the whole family ashore with beach games, barbeques and music, but this year there will also be a spectacular new one-design racing competition on the water.
RS Elite - 2013 Antigua Sailing Week
Antigua Sailing Week Bronze sponsor, Nonsuch Bay Resort is providing its fleet of four RS Elite sailboats for an invitational one-design racing event. The overall prize to be awarded to the winning team is a week's accommodation for two at Nonsuch Bay Resort with unlimited use of the Resort's fleet of sailboats and equipment.
'I hope the event will prove to be an exciting new addition to the Antigua Sailing Week schedule,' commented Mark Whinney, Sales and Marketing Director of Nonsuch Bay Resort.
2013 Antigua Sailing Week
'It will provide an opportunity to take the hottest helms at Antigua Sailing Week out of their yachts, strip them of their drilled crews and tacticians and pitch them against one another on a level playing field. It promises to be a gripping spectacle for the crowds in the traditional spirit of Lay Day . . . sun, fun and a bit of healthy competition. The RS Elites are highly manoeuvrable boats, and mixing them up at close quarters is guaranteed to be entertaining.'
Eight skippers will be battling to win the top prize and with racing close to Pigeon Beach, hundreds of spectators will be cheering on their favourites including French sailing legend and creator of Les Voiles de St. Barths, Luc Poupon, and Denmark's double-Olympic Gold Medallist, Pol Hoj-Jensen.
Adrian Lower, skipper of Swan 44 Selene, will be racing at Antigua Sailing Week and the newly appointed Commodore of the Royal Burnham Yacht Club was delighted to be invited to the Nonsuch Bay RS Elite Challenge.
'Antigua is such a friendly island. Everyone I have met there has been charming and enthusiastic towards visitors and the beautiful turquoise sea and warm trade winds at Antigua Sailing Week will provide fantastic sailing conditions. Everybody I have talked to about Antigua Sailing Week has said that it is one of the best regattas they have ever done. The mixture of highly competitive sailing and a very active social programme is very enticing and I am sure the crew of Selene will have a great time.
'I am thrilled to be invited to race in the RS Elite Challenge. I owned an RS Elite for five years and, in fact, we had a fleet of eight at the Royal Burnham Yacht Club. It is a very competitive fleet at Burnham and has produced five national champions. The RS Elite is a very exciting boat to sail and I can imagine with the good wind in Antigua, they will absolutely fly.'
Ross Applebey, skipper of Oyster 48, Scarlet Oyster is having a cracking Caribbean season! Ross will be participating in Antigua Sailing Week and has been invited to participate in the RS Elite Challenge.
'I am really looking forward to Antigua Sailing Week and the RS Elite Challenge. Whilst it will be slightly daunting lining up against the likes of Poul Hoj-Jensen, I am honoured to be invited to race against such a talented group of skippers! Clearly there is some pressure to do well, but I'm going to give it my all and hopefully have a chance at the podium. I have limited experience in small keelboats, but have raced Lasers in Falmouth Harbour which I hope will prove to be useful experience. I am sure the atmosphere on the water and on the beach will be great as always, so there will be no losers - everyone is sure to have a great time.'
46th Antigua Sailing Week website