BVI Spring Regatta

114 boats to take part in the British Virgin Island's top annual yacht racing bash

Friday April 5th 2002, Author: BVI Spring Regatta, Location: Caribbean
With winds forecast for 10-15 knots, the record-breaking 114 yachts entered at the 2002 BVI Spring Regatta are on tenterhooks for the 10 o'clock start gun tomorrow morning. Fifteen classes will start racing - in the largest event since its inception in 1972 - in the multi-course, multi-race format successfully introduced by the regatta last.

Competitive racing is expected throughout the fleet. The 10-boat Racing 3 has matched the Olson 30s with the J/24s and John Foster's J/27 Magnificent 7. The three J/24s Jersey Devil, Don Q Cristal and Tim Pitts' Richard Ayers Realty will be up against the BVI Olson 30s Willy T (ex- Rushin Rowlette) and Fastidiots, and the Antiguan Olson 30 Lost Horizon. Puerto Rico's J/80 Sun Bum II, the USVI's Tartan 10 Sorceress and Tripp 36 Guilt Tripp are also thrown into the mix.

Seven IC/24s will be racing in their own class, the largest of the two one-design classes as the Melges 24s have only mustered four boats for the event. Efrain Lugo's Orion looks set to dominiate the fleet while Don Q Cristal, also from Puerto Rico, St Maarten's 2 Contact Carib and the BVI's Crew Clothing will be battling for the rest of the honours.

In Racing II, Mermaid II, having cleared the field at the Croix International Regatta and the Heineken International Cup in Puerto Rico, will be looking to turn the tables on Twisted Lizard after its two-point victory at the Rolex Cup Regatta last weekend in St Thomas.

Expect close racing in racer/cruiser with St Croix class winner the BVI's Pipedream up against Brit Beneteau 42s7 Hullabaloo Conch Charters which beat them by one point at the Rolex Cup Regatta.
Aggressive sailing is expected from Cold Beer 3 which also won its class at Rolex but was second to Pipedream when they were in the same class in St Croix.

Six boats from the Caribbean Big Boat Series are entered. Roy E. Disney's Reichel Pugh 75 Pyewacket, which bulleted Heineken Regatta in St Maarten is racing against long-time Caribbean racers Bill Alcott's, Santa Cruz 70 Equation and Tom Hill's Andrews 70 Titan in the racing division In the Racer/Cruiser division of the CBBS, WOR 60 Chica Boba 2000 has joined the fray, not having sailed in St Maarten. Farr 65 Spirit of Diana from Formula 1 Sailing will be racing but without sisterships Spirit of Isis and Spirit of Juno. Swan 60 Orfeo completes the pack.

CBBS participants not attending the BVI Spring Regatta will receive a penalty equal to the number of participants in the regatta plus one point. Antigua Sailing Week (April 28 - May 4) completes the three-regatta series.

Three Swan 56s will be in racing 1 including last year's class winner Noonmark VI. The other Swan 56s are Neva and Lolita. J/145 Strabo and Turner 56 Brigadoon round out the class. Neva won its class at the Heineken Regatta.

Bareboat 1 & 2 comprise 32 boats and include five entries from the BVI Tourist Board: Team UK skippered by Gold medallist Shirley Robertson; Team Germany skippered by Germany's top match racer Markus Weiser; Team Scan-Holland skippered by Gerard Loos, winner of bareboat class 3 at the Heineken Regatta; Team France skippered by Pierre Yves Chatelin and Team Italy skippered by Angelo Costa.

There are eight beach cats racing with five spinnaker beach cats including John Holmberg's Red Hook Agencies, Terry Jackson's Century 21 from the USVI and Enrique Figueroa's Suzuki Tornado from Puerto Rico.

BVI boat Triple Jack looks the favorite in the four-boat multihull fleet and Hughes 38 Second Nature also hailing from the BVI, looks in the money in Jib & Main.

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