Please select your home edition
Edition
Ancasta Ker 40+ 728x90

St. Thomas Int'l Regatta - New faces and race favorites registered

by Carol Bareuther on 11 Feb 2014
Rick Wesslund’’s J/120 El Ocaso won its class in the 2013 regatta. Wesslund will be back this year on a new J/122. Dean Barnes
Say goodbye to the snow and hello to superb sailing and a warm welcome at the St. Thomas International Regatta (STIR). Set for March 28 to 30 and hosted out of the St. Thomas Yacht Club, this year’s fleet features several newcomers as well as a return of Caribbean rock stars. Plus, it’s not too late to register! Bring your own boat or charter.

Location and level of competition is what attracted Switzerland’s Franck Noel to enter his Near Miss, a TP 52 built in New Zealand and originally named Artemis, in the STIR for the first time. Noel bought the boat in 2011 to race the Rolex Fastnet Race where he finished third. In 2012, says project manager, Benoit Briand, 'We finished as the overall winner of the Giraglia Rolex Cup.' Crew for the STIR will include New Zealand’s Rod Dawson as tactician, Poland’s Karol Jablowski at the helm, and the Netherland’s Marcel Van Triest on navigation, with the remainder of the team from France.

Tonnerre de Breskens 3, owned by the Netherland’s Peter Vroon, is another new entry. The 2009 New Zealand-built Ker 46 has campaigned mainly in Europe. In 2013, Tonnerre won the RORC Points Championship in 2013, something the team also accomplished in 2010 and 2011, plus their IRC class in Cowes Week. 'We have an international crew principally amateurs from the Netherlands, Belgium, South-Africa, Britain and Ireland', says Vroom, who started the year off competing in Key West Race Week and the RORC Caribbean 600 before taking to the STIR start line.

Great racing and fun is why the USA’s David Southwell entered his Morris 48, Kismet, in the STIR. Southwell, who hails from Boston, Massachusetts, has cruised Kismet in the Caribbean since last November. However, Southwell is an accomplished racer who finished second in class in the 2012 Newport Bermuda Race aboard the then-named Barra, and third in the IRC-2 class as Kismet in the 2013 Marblehead Halifax Race. 'This is my first St. Thomas International Regatta,' says Southwell. 'It’s by far the most popular regatta for my crew, many of which would have deserted if I hadn’t entered.'

Highland Fling XII, Monaco’s Irvine Laidlaw’s 2011-launched TP 52, is back after losing its rig at mark one of race one two years ago. 'The owner has built a replacement rig, and is keen to return to St. Thomas and test this boat,' says St. Thomas’ Olympic Silver Medalist, Peter Holmberg, who will be tactician onboard. 'It's a coastal course oriented TP52, as opposed to a windward/leeward TP52, so it will be interesting to see how it stacks up against the other TP52's.'

Back for his fifth year after winning his class last year is the USA’s Rick Wesslund, from Miami, Florida. Wesslund traded in his J/120 for a new J/122, also named El Ocaso, which he raced for the first time at this year’s Key West Race Week. Crew members include skipper/navigator Mike Caldwell, Bob Hillier trimming main and tactician Anson Mulder. 'We enjoy the variety of race courses, especially St. James and St. John courses, the quality of the competition and race management,' says Wesslund. 'We also like that the St. Thomas and BVI regattas are a back-to-back combo as it allows our team a lot of racing in one trip.'

The BVI’s Jon Charlton will return after a nearly three decade hiatus to race his C&C 41, Reba, in Jib and Main. 'We have won the Gosling's Rum Series in 2012 and 2013, which is made up of the six biggest regattas in BVI not including the Spring Regatta, and are leading the series again this year. We also won our class in the 2013 BVI Spring Regatta,' Charlton says. 'We figured it was time to race in St. Thomas again.'

Finally, it’s the combination of quality race direction, great competition and affordability that will bring Puerto Rico’s Jaime Torres back once again on his Melges 32, Smile and Wave. 'The race management has never disappointed. Race directors are experienced and well equipped to provide challenging courses to all different classes. The three day format and the fact that all activities are on the beach at the St. Thomas Yacht Club works well for visitors like us,' says Torres.

There are several opportunities to charter. www.performanceyachtcharter.comPerformance_Yacht_Charter [Sorry, this link had a problem] offers its Swan 51 Northern Child, First 40 Southern Child (formerly called Smile and Wave) and J/120 Sunset Child (formerly El Ocaso) to charter by the whole boat or by individual crew spots. Yachts are race ready. The whole yacht or individual places, bareboat or skippered, are available on www.ondecksailing.com!OneDesck_Sailing [Sorry, this link had a problem] Beneteau 40.7, Spirit of Venus. Bermuda High, a Hanse 400, can be chartered through www.soundsailingcenter.com!Sound_Sailing_Center [Sorry, this link had a problem]. There are two IC24s in St. Thomas available for charter in the Jib and Main Class from Paul Stoeken (paul@islandsol.vi).


Register online for the St. Thomas International Regatta at wwwyachtscoring.com. For more information about the regatta, visit www.stthomasinternationalregatta.com!St_Thomas_International_Rgatta [Sorry, this link had a problem] or, follow for the latest information on Facebook www.facebook.com/rolexregatta, Instagram #IRRSTYC and Twitter @IRRSTYC

Mackay BoatsWildwind 2016 660x82Helm Events 660x82

Related Articles

Kiel to host 2017 Para World Sailing Championships
Kiel's announcement as the host falls less than one month after World Sailing released the Strategic Plan for 2017-2020. The Plan outlines four main priorities as well tactics to achieve the goals, ensuring World Sailing presents a strong bid to the International Paralympic Committee for re-introduction into the 2024 Paralympic Games and future editions.
Posted today at 12:29 pm
Extreme Sailing Series™ adopts the Flying Phantom Series
The partnership with Series organisers OC Sport will see the Flying Phantoms take flight at many European Series Acts The partnership with Series organisers OC Sport, will see the Flying Phantoms take flight at a number of the European Series Acts, which will be staged on some of the most iconic patches of water in the world.
Posted today at 12:17 pm
Vendée Globe – Le Cleac'h chops over five days off Cape Leeuwin record
Armel Le Cleac'h has smashed the race record for the passage from Les Sables d'Olonne to Cape Leeuwin by over five days Armel Le Cleac'h should today smash the race record for the passage from Les Sables d'Olonne to Cape Leeuwin by somewhere around five and a half days.
Posted today at 11:24 am
Vendee Globe - Colman has serious fire and near-capsize + Video
New Zealand/US sailor, Conrad Colman has had to deal with a nightmare scenario, when fire broke out New Zealand/US sailor, Conrad Colman has had to deal with a nightmare scenario, when fire broke out aboard Foresight Natural Energy followed by a near-capsize after the auto-pilot lost power and crash gybed the 60fter. 'I went outside to take a reef and when I came back inside I saw black smoke and yellow flames leaping from behind the chart table. One of the solar charge controllers was burning'
Posted today at 10:50 am
America’s Cup Endeavour Junior Hobie Wave Race to be held in Bermuda
Teams from the United States, France, the United Kingdom, Japan, New Zealand and Sweden will race in Bermuda. Hobie has provided Waves for the use of school-aged kids in Bermuda, New York, Chicago, and Toulon. The kids see the America’s Cup boats and then the Hobie Wave and instantly get the connection.
Posted today at 10:08 am
Sailing World Cup - Final on 60 years to the day of Melbourne Olympics
On 5 December 1956, the Melbourne Olympic Games sailing competition drew to a close On 5 December 1956, the Melbourne Olympic Games sailing competition drew to a close with some tense final races across the five classes. Scandinavian sailors came out on top winning three of five golds and legends such as Paul Elvstrom (DEN) and Peter Mander and Jack Cropp (NZL) etched their names into the history books.
Posted today at 8:47 am
Extreme GC32's training action-shots by Beth Morley
Beth Morley provided this gallery of images from Extreme GC32's training and out on the Harbour yesterday Beth Morley provided this gallery of images from Extreme GC32's training and out on Harbour yesterday.
Posted today at 7:26 am
Melges 24 Worlds - More Day 5 action-shots by Carlo Borlenghi
Carlo Borlenghi was on water at 2016 Melges 24 World Championship and provided this gallery of images from Day 5 action. Photographer Carlo Borlenghi was on water at 2016 Melges 24 World Championship - Miami and provided this gallery of images from Day 5 action.
Posted today at 7:15 am
Melges 24 World Championship - Day 5 action-shots by Carlo Borlenghi
Carlo Borlenghi was on water at 2016 Melges 24 World Championship and provided this gallery of images from Day 5 action. Photographer Carlo Borlenghi was on water at 2016 Melges 24 World Championship - Miami and provided this gallery of images from Day 5 action.
Posted today at 6:58 am
Australian 18Ft League’s Yandoo Trophy action-shots by Beth Morley
Beth Morley provided this gallery of images from Australian 18 Footer League’s Yandoo Trophy. Beth Morley provided this gallery of images from Australian 18 Footer League’s Yandoo Trophy, where Triple M were crowned the winner of the Australian 18 Footer League’s Yandoo Trophy.
Posted today at 6:37 am