Spectacular conditions prevailed for the penultimate day of the 2018 Superyacht Challenge Antigua on the stunning waters south of Antigua.
Two short races were completed in a building breeze and sea state. In the Corsairs Class Spiip took Race 3 to take the overall lead for the class. However Rebecca fought back to win Race 4. Both teams are now tied on points for the regatta with Elfje in third place. In the Buccaneers Class, Acadia posted two more victories to keep a perfect score for the regatta. Zig Zag remains in second with Marama third. The best start in Race 3 was executed by Danneskjold, the 105ft sloop was just 8 seconds shy of the line. In Race 4, Spiip and Acadia were both just 6 seconds behind the gun.
In the Corsairs Class, the 142ft ketch Rebecca and 112ft sloop Spiip, both from the drawing board of German Frers, are tied at the top for the final race. The 172ft Hoek designed ketch Elfje still has a mathematically chance of winning.
“It was lovely today, a beautiful day’s sailing.” Smiled Spiip’s navigator, Campbell Field. “There was a lot of reaching today, which suited the ketches so we are very happy with our results and it’s all to play for tomorrow. This crew loves to come together on Spiip, and if we can win the regatta tomorrow, the party will be all the better.”
“A fourth and first for Rebecca today, excuse the cliché but a game of two halves.” commented Rebecca’s skipper, Darryl Starr. “In Race 4, our tactician Smithy, did a nice move to get us into the shore at the bottom mark. It set us up in flatter water and we were spotting the lifts to keep above the sloops, a great end to an exciting day. Tomorrow we know we are not going to win unless we sail extremely well.”
In the Buccaneers Class, Acadia need only to finish the last race to win the class with Zig Zag second. Marama is lying in third position, a winner in 2014, the 102ft aluminium ketch was originally designed by Dominiqe Presle. Paul Deeth, proprietor of Admiral’s Inn, and founder of the Superyacht Challenge Antigua, is at the helm of Marama for the regatta.
“Over the past seven editions, the regatta has stuck to the ethos of providing fair sailing and enjoyable social occasions. Designed solely for the pleasure of superyacht owners, their guests and crew, it is a simple recipe, and one that the organising committee has no intention of changing. Behind the scenes the organising committee and all the staff put in a tremendous amount of effort to ensure that the regatta is enjoyable, and I know I speak for all of the sailors involved; it is very much appreciated.
On Friday after racing, eight teams contested the zany Paddle Board Competition held just off the Superyacht dock. The paddle boards were donated by SUP Antigua and in excess of 3000 EC$ was raised in aid of the creation of a properly managed marine park in English Harbour, with the collaboration of National Parks of Antigua.
The best dressed teams were all from Spiip. Two all-women teams, Rebecca and Spiip 2, had a ladies duel won by Rebecca. However Spiip 3 was scored DNF after a bizarre incident with Rebecca, which involved Tarzan fighting with an alligator! Acadia, boasting a team including a two-time Volvo Ocean Race winner and a multiple sailing world champion, could only manage third. Danneskjold came out with all guns blazing but an epic performance, bigger then Ben Hur, saw Marama take the qualifiers. Marama won the right to take on the mighty Team Antigua, who had just rowed 3000 miles across the Atlantic Ocean.
Tiger Tyson and Oscar Stranack had the audacity of taking on the four-man team, two-handed – real David vs Goliath territory. To huge applause the Marama teenagers won! Many congratulations to Tiger and Oscar. Tiger Tyson will be representing Antigua & Barbuda at Kite Surfing for the 2018 Youth Olympic Games in Argentina.
Racing at the 2018 Superyacht Challenge Antigua concludes tomorrow, Saturday 3rd February, with just one race scheduled to start at 1100 local time. For more about 2018 Superyacht Challenge Antigua visit www.superyachtchallengeantigua.com
by Louay Habib