Please select your home edition
Edition
Protector 728x90

Les Voiles de St Barth - A climax soon to be relished

by Fabrice Thomazeau on 28 Mar 2013
Les Voiles de St Barth 2012 Christophe Jouany / Les Voiles de St. Barth http://www.lesvoilesdesaintbarth.com/
The Les Voiles de St Barth is set to take place April 8-13. Each remarkable song is marked with a rising crescendo that resonates with the heart. And so it is with this season’s epic series of Caribbean regattas, that its climax is soon to be relished at the Les Voiles de St. Barth. The event packs into five days (one for preparation, four for racing, and one – a 'layday' – for enjoying some serious French hospitality St. Barth’s-style) all that has become traditional in Caribbean regattas and much more that has not.

'What I did find last year, which was my first at Les Voiles de St. Barth, was that this is the one race I’ll never miss,' said Puerto Rico’s Sergio Sagramoso, who has been tearing it up on the island circuit this year with his J/122 Lazy Dog. 'It was so much fun, a really great experience: the island is amazing, the people are amazing, the organizers are a huge plus, and I don’t think we ever had as much fun as that layday when we did a whole bunch of sushi eating and drinking at Nikki Beach.'

Sagramoso, however gratified when enjoying the fabulously French atmosphere of St. Barth’s and the organizers’ approaches to creating a holiday experience in and around racing, still has an unfulfilled desire to take care of here. Last year, he lost on a tie breaker to Frits Bus’s Melges 24 Island Water World (which is entered again this year). 'This year I will have no tie-breaker; I want it to go our way,' he declared. With so many 40 footers (the same length as Lazy Dog) entered this year, Bus will most likely compete in a different racing class; however, Sagramoso’s conviction in seeking redemption will run no less deep, seeing as he won the recent Heineken Regatta in arguably the toughest class there: one made up of 15 40-footers.


The ten-person crew on Lazy Dog – windsurfing buddies over the past 20+ years who are now doctors, lawyers, contractors and business owners – have been sailing every Puerto Rican regatta and as many in the Caribbean as they can to prepare for this season. (They are currently competing in the International Rolex Regatta and will move on to the BVI Spring Regatta before heading to St. Barth’s.) 'We are sharp and going all out,' he said, adding that the crew commitment aboard Lazy Dog also involves delivering the boat on its own bottom over the 175 miles that lie between St. Barth’s and Puerto Rico. 'We make it our priority to go sailing; then we have to suck it up the rest of the year to catch up at work. We might fall dead after all this racing, but there is a saying, ‘lo bailado no se quita.’' (Roughly translated by Sagramoso: 'If you dance, no one can take that away from you.')

Sixty-two boats are currently signed up for Les Voiles de St. Barth, with more to come. Of those, no less than ten are Swans and include the 100’ Varsovie, the largest boat in the fleet, and the next largest, the 80’ Selene; the 53’ Music representing the Royal Cape Yacht Club; and the 51’ Northern Child representing RORC. A regatta favorite is the 53’ Puffy, owned by Patrick Demarchelier, the famous French fashion photographer who splits his time between New York and St. Barth and whose career has flourished since the late ‘70s and reached one of several zeniths in the ‘90s when he contracted primarily with Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar.

The CEO of Richard Mille Europe, Peter Harrison, has entered his 45’ JOLT2, a one-off yacht built of light weight carbon fiber to a radical Reichel/Pugh design. His core crew will be mainly from Britain, enhanced with one Italian crew member; in addition, journalists from Europe, USA and New Zealand will join as corporate guests.


'I have been sailing for many years in smaller yachts, which I still enjoy doing on Lake Geneva and in the Solent,' said Harrison. 'JOLT2 arrived in 2012 and was baptized on a very challenging Round the Island (Isle of Wight) Race in over 25 knots of wind. We also took part in the Taittinger Royal Solent Yacht Club Regatta in Yarmouth and in Les Voiles de St. Tropez with a mix of keen amateurs, pros and corporate guests.

Already in 2013, JOLT2 has sailed in the RORC 600 offshore race with a shorthanded crew of four, another 'baptism by fire,' according to Harrison. 'I am very much looking forward to bringing JOLT2 to Les Voiles de St. Barth to enjoy some fun and challenging racing in the sun! It’s the first time we will be competing there, and we can’t wait to experience the racing excitement up-front as well as the beautiful scenery of St. Barthelemy. Richard Mille is very proud of being a sponsor to what some people consider the best regatta in the Caribbean Series right Les Voiles de Saint Barth

PredictWind.comZhik Dinghy 660x82Ancasta Ker 33 660x82

Related Articles

An Int’l fleet race ready for BVI Spring Regatta and Sailing Festival
Many of this year's participants in the BVI Spring Regattamade their way ashore today to register for a racing Many of this year's participants in the BVI Spring Regatta and Sailing Festival made their way ashore today to register for a week of world-class racing out of Nanny Cay, Tortola. The Marina is alive with activity - old friends catching up and first-timers partaking of the infamous Mount Gay rum drinks at the beach bar. With the breeze looking light for Tuesday's annual Round Tortola Race
Posted today at 4:08 am
WSSR Council ratifies 3 intermediate records set by IDEC Sport
IDEC SPORT slashed almost a day off the South Pacific record set by Bruno Peyron and the maxi catamaran, Orange in 2005 As a reminder, the time of 40 days, 23 hours, 30 minutes and 30 seconds is now the outright round the world record from Ushant to Ushant via the three major capes, Good Hope, Leeuwin and the Horn, referred to as the Jules Verne Trophy record.
Posted on 27 Mar
Princess Sofia Trophy – Park’s pride as he prepares for Palma finale
RYA Olympic Manager Stephen Park believes the British Sailing Team is in the right place for multi-medal winning success ‘Sparky’, as Park is commonly known, will preside over some 63 British Sailing Team athletes at the first major European event of the year, before moving on to a new role at British Cycling next month after over 20 years with the RYA.
Posted on 27 Mar
Volvo Ocean Race - Team AkzoNobel leaves Persico
The Simeon Tienpont skippered Team AkzoNobel Volvo65 has left the building facility at Persico Marine in Bergamo The Simeon Tienpont skippered Team AkzoNobel Volvo65 has left the building facility at Persico Marine in Bergamo, Italy to The Boatyard in Lisbon under the custodianship of GAC Pindar. Before she left the yard at Persico the team had a celebration to mark the end of the build phase.
Posted on 27 Mar
New boats and old favourites prepare for BVI Spring Regatta
BVI Spring Regatta and Sailing Festival 2017 is pleased to welcome C&C 30 Sportboat/Gunboat fleets to this year's event Always offering up something new and different, the BVI Spring Regatta and Sailing Festival 2017 is pleased to welcome the C&C 30 Sportboat and Gunboat fleets to this year's event which kicks off on Monday with registration at noon and opening party at 6pm.
Posted on 27 Mar
St. Thomas International Regatta 2017 - Day 2
Six to eight foot seas off island's east end, gusts blowing to 20 to 25 knots and mix of rain and sun all added to fun. The St. Thomas International Regatta (STIR) proved its reputation as the 'Crown Jewel of Caribbean Yacht Racing' by superbly delivering on its signature mix of round the rocks and round the buoy courses on the event's second day of competition. What's more, six to eight foot seas off the island's east end, gusts blowing to 20 to 25 knots and a mix of rain and sun all added to the fun.
Posted on 26 Mar
St. Thomas International Regatta - Day 2 action-shots by Dean Barnes
Dean Barnes was on water at St. Thomas International Regatta 2017 and provided this gallery of images from Day 2 action. Photographer Dean Barnes was on water at St. Thomas International Regatta 2017 and provided this gallery of images from Day 2 action.
Posted on 26 Mar
St. Thomas International Regatta – Day 1 – Wind was the word
Competitors in the Large Offshore Multihull Class especially reveled in the afternoon breeze. These polar-opposite conditions plus the challenge of round the islands rather than strictly buoy racing proved the talk of why some of the best sailors in the Caribbean, U.S., Canada, Australia and New Zealand put STIR on their list of must-do’ regattas each year.
Posted on 26 Mar
Meet Clipper 2017-18 Race skipper Gaëtan Thomas
This summer Gaëtan Thomas will make history as the first Belgian Skipper to lead a team around the world in Clipper Race This summer Gaëtan Thomas will make history as the first Belgian Skipper to lead a team around the world in the Clipper Race.
Posted on 26 Mar
Bureau Vallée 2 back in the water in Brittany
The former Banque Populaire VIII aboard which Armel Le Cléac’h won the last Vendée Globe was put back in the water The former Banque Populaire VIII aboard which Armel Le Cléac’h won the last Vendée Globe was put back in the water on Friday in Lorient (Brittany), with her new decoration in the colours of Bureau Vallée.
Posted on 25 Mar