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Light Winds Slow Carnival Sailing

April 24, 2005 — Six IC-24 class sailboats raced on Sunday in St. Thomas harbor to celebrate Carnival. There were seven races planed, but only four races were held. The even number of races and the closely matched boats and crews resulted in a tie between former Rolex Regatta winners Brand New Second Hand and Green Boat for first place. The next two places were also tied, causing a bit of a problem for regatta sponsor Lisa Curreri.
During a post race awards brunch at Hook, Line and Sinker, the issue was resolved. The $600 cash prizes for first, second and third were combined and all funds remaining after the brunch bill was paid were donated to the junior sailing program at the St. Thomas Yacht Club.
Although the racing was to start at 10 a.m., light winds delayed the arrival of the fleet from the East End. The later start also required that the race course be shifted slightly, as the wind direction moved from due south to more west of south. This second delay meant the first race started about 11 a.m.
Chris Curreri had started the day sailing Brand New Second Hand solo, and Verian Aguilar volunteered to join Curreri from the well-crewed Green Boat. Carlos Aguilar, husband of Verian and skipper of Green Boat, said if he had known it would be so close he would have given up someone less talented. The results were husband and wife each driving their boats to two wins, one second and one third. The other tie was between Stinger and Voila, again tied with identical finishes. Boat Drinks and Red Dog also raced.
In addition to cash sponsor Curreri and Co. Realtors, Charles "Hap" Starr donated his time and boat Tall Cotton as the committee boat and VI Source online newspapers was the organizing sponsor. St. Thomas Yacht Club and Bill Canfield supplied the committee equipment. As Hook, Line and Sinker is the home of the Royal Frenchtown Yacht Club, this is the first joint event by the two clubs since the days of the match racing in town.
The Carnival Committee did not hold the water sports day this year, so there was no crowd of people packing the waterfront. Bobby Danet did bring his classic wooden racing sloop out to the races so the flavor of Carnival in the 50's and 60's was stirred into the modern sailing races. The sailors returning to the East End to moor their boats had one consolation for the light breezes, the shifting wind direction allowed for a spinnaker reach both to town and back to the St. Thomas Yacht Club.

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