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SAILING: 7th Mango Bowl Regatta Was A Top-Class Event

Image: Some of the races were too close to call. (PHOTO: Anthony De Beauville)

THE Mango Bowl Regatta Committee from Saint Lucia Yacht Club can revel in the exhilaration from the 7th Annual Mango Bowl Regatta which took place from November 30th to December 2nd, 2018.

With a total of 20 vessels registered from the region, over 100 sailors took part in this year’s event in Rodney Bay. The crews were a vibrant blend of ages and genders.

Image: 7th Mango Bowl Regatta Champions, Attitude skippered by Fredrick Sweeney second from right. (PHOTO: Anthony De Beauville)
7th Mango Bowl Regatta Champions, Attitude skippered by Fredrick Sweeney second from right. (PHOTO: Anthony De Beauville)

Starting on Friday night with the Skippers’ briefing, this year held at the IGY Rodney Bay Marina, the sailors gathered to start a weekend of excitement. Crews from Barbados, Grenada, Martinique, and Trinidad and Tobago joined together with Saint Lucian sailors in anticipation of exquisite racing on the sea. While Regatta Director, Lily Bergasse, and Racing Officer, Duncan Ince, discussed the courses, rules and Clean Regatta business for the weekend, the cheers came loud and strong. Even first timers from Trinidad and Tobago, crewing Hawkeye, were filled with enthusiasm to start the weekend of sailing.

On Saturday morning the animated sailors donned in crew apparel checked in with the race committee boat anchored out in the bay. With 4 boats registered in Racing class, 2 in Cruising class, and 14 combined in J24/Surprise class, the regatta commenced at 9.15 a.m. with the J24/Surprise class sailing to the Windward mark and west through the gate. The day proved eventful with 3 races for both the Racing and Cruising classes while the J24/Surprise combined class sailed 6 races for the day. Duncan Ince commented that without the reinforcement from the race committee, it would have proved difficult to run racing so efficiently.

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Sunday’s racing proved to be ambitious by most with Racing and Cruising classes completing 2 races in their half day, while the J24/Surprise group completed another 3. Several boats were hindered by technical issues caused by the winds.

According to Fredric Sweeney who captains Attitude “The sailing was very competitive with many top sailors from neighbouring islands. The courses and conditions were excellent with plenty of sun and wind!” Other comments from visiting sailors exclaimed how brilliant the sailing was throughout the weekend.

The weekend came to a close with a BBQ and Award Ceremony at the Saint Lucia Yacht Club located on Reduit beach. Some of the Martinique crews had a chance for the first time to participate in this portion of the event and loved it. In previous years, the Award Ceremony was held much later in the day, but for 2018 the committee held everything earlier allowing the sailors more time to enjoy the atmosphere.

Image: Jabal another of Saint Lucia’s competing J24. (PHOTO: Anthony De Beauville)
Jabal another of Saint Lucia’s competing J24. (PHOTO: Anthony De Beauville)

Special thanks were given during the ceremony by both Saint Lucia Yacht Club Commodore Peter William Lang and Regatta Director Lily Bergasse to the organizations and individuals that support this event year after year. IGY Rodney Bay Marina and Sean Devaux offer their services for arriving boats. The official shirts and banner are designed by Scribble Designs and Jo Boxall. Official photography from Mango Bowl Regatta for 2018 was through IFete.net and John McLennon, who further enabled sailors and captains with photographs taken.

Each class winner receives a hand painted Mango Bowl sponsored by Saint Lucia Sailing Association. Cafe Ole was the official host and sponsor for the Saturday night prize giving and fete. Other sponsors included KP Marine Saint Lucia, Island Water World, The BodyHoliday, Chairman’s rum through Saint Lucia Distillers, Flow, Cariquisine, Bay Gardens Marina Haven, and Southern Breeze as the VIP Boat.

Lily Bergasse commented that she is elated by the support from Saint Lucia Tourism Authority and Events Company Saint Lucia. The Committee is looking forward to their added support starting in 2019 to grow this event even more. The Mango Bowl Regatta is the premiere regatta for Saint Lucia and with boats already pre-registering for 2019, we look toward added participation.

Special thanks to Greening the Caribbean and Wayne Neale for working diligently to aid the promotion of “Clean Regatta” through the Sailors for the Sea program. After achieving Silver Certification, the MBR Committee aimed to make this year standout again. Through collaboration earlier in November, there was a beach cleanup in Reduit which aimed to showcase the amount of pollution left on the beach. Supplemental support from Natrapure and Flow provided a reduction in plastic through the refillable water station at IGY Rodney Bay Marina and Saint Lucia Yacht Club.

Next year’s date for the Mango Bowl Regatta has been set for November 29th to December 1st. The MBR Committee is looking forward to seeing more sailors grace the shores of St Lucia for this event.

Image: Some of the races were too close to call. (PHOTO: Anthony De Beauville)
Some of the races were too close to call. (PHOTO: Anthony De Beauville)

Final results: Racing Class: 1st, Lady Blue (Jean-Pierre Leny/ Captain –Martinique, 2nd, Gaya (Adonai Modeste/ captain -Saint Lucia).

Cruising Class: 1st, Leonora (David Spieler/ captain – Barbados), 2nd, Papgayo (Ben Thompson/ captain – Saint Lucia).

J24 Class: 1st, Attitude (Fredric Sweeney/ captain – Saint Lucia), 2nd, Die Hard (Robbie Yearwood/captain- Grenada), 3rd, Hawkeye (Stephen Bushe/ captain) Trinidad and Tobago).

It was a clean sweep for the Martiniquan’s in the Surprise category: 1st, Helium ( Nicolas Gillet/captain), 2nd, Kreyol Sandwich (Stanley Dormoy/captain), 3rd, Digilife (VianneySaintenoy/captain).

J24/Surprise Combined Class: 1st, Helium (Nicolas Gillet/captain – Martinique), 2nd, Attitude (Fredric Sweeney/captain – Saint Lucia), 3rd, Die Hard (Robbie Yearwood/ captain – Grenada).

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