Whether you already know your bowsprit from your pushpit and want to get onboard and start racing, or you prefer to enjoy the action at a more leisurely pace, regattas are where the very best in sailing come together. For many, the Caribbean regattas are the epitome of sailing excellence, excitement and bonhomie.
Recent years have seen an impressive upsurge in the popularity of sailing yachts both for sale and charter (see SAILING YACHTS – PURELY FOR ENTHUSIASTS OR THE FUTURE OF YACHTINGin our last eletter) and the draw of 30 or 40 of the world’s finest sailing yachts racing at the peak of their performance through some of the world’s most exotic and spectacular scenery, is proving irresistible to an ever growing number of people.
TWO WAYS TO ENJOY REGATTAS...
“We have two types of regatta charter clients,” explains Head of YPI Charter, Fiona Maureso. “Firstly there are those who adore sailing, especially in visually stunning and exclusive locations around the world, who want to experience and enjoy the thrill of the regattas but without actually taking part. Typically they will charter a yacht like WINDROSE or VALQUESTor SKIP' N BOU - yachts that offer plenty of space and comfort and an attentive crew - and they will watch all the action from onboard. They will then often meet up with friends and colleagues at any oneof the numerous after-race parties and get-togethers that are so much a part of the regattas today.
"The second type of charter client is the one who actually wants to charter a racing yacht. These are the clients who want to experience proper racing first hand. It’s not for novices but it is one of the most exhilarating experiences anyyachtsman can have.”
“Being at sea on a sailing yacht is an entirely different experience to being on a motor yacht,” explains Head ofYPI’s sailing division, William Bishop. “Sailing yachts allow you to enjoy the journey as much as the destination. Sailing is about being a part of what is around you…not an observer…and being part of a race crew in a regatta on a sailing yacht like ATHOS or METEORor BLISSmeans working together as a team. It is hard work but a real thrill.”
Regattas generate a palpable sense of bonding between all participants.
“Regattas are a great leveller,” says William. “Outside of the racing a number of events accompany the regattas which offer participants and enthusiasts the chance to socialise, network, share experiences and have a “rollicking good time”.
“You’ll find owners, charter guests, captains and deckhands all getting together to share stories of near misses and last minute winning decisions,” adds Fiona. “It’s great to watch and you really feel you are all a part of something very special.”
THE CARRIBEAN REGATTAS
With almost twenty different races taking place including three of the world’s most celebrated events, the regatta calendar heats up for the Caribbean with the Superyacht Challenge in Antigua in January and runs right through to Antigua Sailing Week at the end of April.
“Of course the locations are magnificent,” says Fiona. “The races take place amongst breath-taking scenery around the islands. And of course once the races are over, there is so much more that charterers can explore in terms of the natural environment, historic locations, restaurants, spas and even shopping. And every island offers up something completely different.”
To find out more about Caribbean Regatta Charters, whether you want to watch or take part, contact:
Some Caribbean Regattas we think you should consider participating in or attending this coming season:
ST MAARTEN'S HEINEKEN REGATTA
28 FEB - 3 MARCH 2013
Where: The event takes place in and around the beautiful island of St Maarten located on the northern end of the Lesser Antilles, approximately 180 miles east of Puerto Rico. Covering just 37 square miles the island has both a Dutch and French sector. Known as the ‘Culinary Capital of the Caribbean’, it offers some amazing yachting locations and is steeped in local history.
Why enter: It is the largest race event in the Caribbean with more than 200 yachts from over 25 countries entering last year for four days of world class racing. The Black Eyed Peas, Marley Brothers, Maxi Priest and Wyclef Jean have all performed at its renowned after-race events and parties.
For more information:
Tel: Michele Korteweg, Jerry Wikkeling and Anne Roos on: +599 544 2079
|LORO PIANA CARIBBEAN SUPER YACHT REGATTA|
20-23 MARCH 2013
Where: The event takes place on the third largest island of the BVI, Virgin Gorda, measuring just 8.5 square miles. In addition to the sheer beauty of the island, travellers are drawn to Virgin Gorda for its quiet coves, safe anchorages, and luxury resorts.
Why enter: Sailing yacht owners and charterers experience three days of racing in the prime sailing conditions of the BVI, expertly organised by the international race committee at the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda under the International Superyacht Rule rating system. There is a fleet start for the racing division and a pursuit start for the cruising division. Shore-side a host of activities are organised including an exclusive Owners Dinner in the YCCS Clubhouse, a Cocktail Competition on the dock, an evening at Oil Nut Bay Beach Club, a pirate-inspired tender Treasure Hunt and lots more…
For more information:
Tel: +44 (0) 20 8545 9330
ST BARTHS BUCKET
22-25 MARCH 2012
Where: The location is one of the biggest draws of this Bucket regatta. Held on sparkling Saint Barthélemy, one of the Leeward Islands in the West Indies, it offers sailors 20 white sandy coves, luxury resorts and infallible cruising conditions.
Why enter: An invitational regatta limited to 30 yachts of 30.5m (100ft) and above, it’s well worth swinging a summons to St Barths. This is sailing for the love of it; a regatta run in the spirit of fun over competition – the aim is to ‘win the party’. Held as a series of pursuit races, it’s all about exciting finishes without the risk of scraping expensive paintwork jostling on the start line. The place to see yachts by all the greatest designers, from Farr to Dubois.
For more information:
Tel: +1 781 639 0203
|ANTIGUA CLASSIC YACHT REGATTA|
19-24 APRIL 2012
Where: Since a group of classic yachts took up racing to Guadeloupe in the 1960s and Antigua Race Week was born, the island has become a firm fixture in the yachting calendar. The combination of Caribbean hospitality, fine rum, and trade wind sailing conditions is unbeatable.
Why enter: It’s all about the history, which is focused on preserving classic yacht racing. Established in 1988 to continue to attract traditional yachts to Antigua Race Week, the Classic is now a hotly contested event. Entrants must boast a full keel, heavy displacement, traditional rig and be built of wood or steel.
For more information:
Tel: +1 268 460 1799