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HomeNewsLocal sportsRegistration Is Open for International Optimist Regatta Set for June 12-18

Registration Is Open for International Optimist Regatta Set for June 12-18

Registration is open. The 30th anniversary of the  International Optimist Regatta (IOR), the TOTE Clinic, and the TOTE Team Race will take place from June 12-18 at the St. Thomas Yacht Club. More specifically, the TOTE Clinic takes place June 12-14, followed by the TOTE Team Race, June 15, and the International Optimist Regatta (IOR) June 16-18.

For three decades, this week-long event has been recognized throughout the Caribbean and the world for providing great skill-sharpening grounds for top sailors and an excellent entry-level platform for juniors new to the sport.

“The St. Thomas Yacht Club (STYC) invites sailors to register now for the 2023 IOR, TOTE Clinic and TOTE Team Race,” said Emily Zimmerman, regatta director and St. Thomas Yacht Club commodore. “We are proud to say that over the past 30 years, winners and participants in the IOR have become college All-American sailors, and Olympic and America’s Cup sailors, underscoring both the great competition and fantastic sailing conditions we offer here in the U.S. Virgin Islands.

“This year, the IOR offers a great opportunity to tune up for the Optimist North American Championships, set for July 2-9, in Antigua. That said, we look forward to welcoming sailors, their friends and families to St. Thomas to race with excellent wind, clear seas and great competition.”

Tropical start-line at the 2022 IOR. (Credit: Matias Capizzano)

The 2023 International Optimist Regatta can accept only a maximum of 125 sailors; therefore, register early at www.regattanetwork.com/event/25798.  The registration fee for the IOR is $300, with late registration after May 1 of $350. The fee to enter the IOR and TOTE Clinic is $700 or $400 for the clinic only. A refund, less a $150 processing fee, will be granted to those entries that cancel by May 1.

“In keeping in line with TOTE’s emphasis on safety, reliability and commitment, TOTE is again honored to sponsor the TOTE Clinic and the TOTE Team Race for the 13th year. TOTE is proud to be associated with the International Optimist Regatta 2023,” said Clarence Nibbs, terminal manager USVI for TOTE Maritime.

Some of the best sailors in the sport are expected to participate in this Caribbean Sailing Association-sanctioned regatta. Sailors can compete in Advanced Red (ages 13-15), Blue (ages 11-12), and White (ages 10 and under) as well as the Beginner Green fleet.

Trophies will be awarded to the top five finishers in the Red, Blue and White classes and the top three overall as well as the top-place female. Participation awards will be awarded to all Green fleet sailors. Additional awards include the Peter Ives’ Perpetual Trophy (superb sailor/individual), the Chuck Fuller Sportsmanship Perpetual Trophy, and the Founder’s Perpetual Trophy (Top Female).

The regatta is sponsored by the U.S. Virgin Islands Department of Tourism, TOTE, and K3 Waterproof Gear.

Some of the entrants in the 2022 IOR in front of the St. Thomas Yacht Club. (Credit: Dean Barnes)

Make Plans Now!

For charters, contact Simmons Boatworks  The charter package comes with a Winner-brand hull with airbags, blocks, a 3-to-1 mainsheet and painter, on a dolly, with top cover. The deadline to reserve charter boats is May 1.

For coach boat charters, contact Zimmerman at internationaloptiregatta@gmail.com

Traveling to St. Thomas is easy. The following airlines fly direct from major U.S. cities: American (Boston, Miami, New York, San Juan), Delta (Atlanta, New York), JetBlue (Boston), Spirit (Fort Lauderdale), and United (Chicago, Newark, Washington Dulles). Airlines connecting St. Thomas to the Caribbean include Cape Air, LIAT and Seaborne Airlines.

Available accommodations on St. Thomas in the Cowpet Bay area where the regatta takes place include hotels, B&Bs, resorts, villas, condos, VRBO rentals and Airbnb’s. For more information, visit www.visitusvi.com and www.usvihta.com

For more information, email internationaloptiregatta@gmail.com or call 775-6320. Or, for the Notice of Regatta (NOR), Registration Form, and other information, visit the St. Thomas Yacht Club website at  www.regattanetwork.com/event/25798. Please also visit the International Optimist Regatta on social media @internationaloptiregatta

About TOTE

TOTE is a domestic ocean freight carrier headquartered in Jacksonville, Fla., that offers freight services for containerized cargo between the U.S., San Juan, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. TOTE is the first carrier to operate liquid natural gas (LNG) powered vessels. www.totemaritime.com

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