THE 24TH ANNUAL ANTIGUA CLASSIC YACHT REGATTA ENDED FOLLOWING THE AWARDS CEREMONY ON TUESDAY EVENINGWednesday 20th April 2011
The 24th Antigua Classic Yacht Regatta, hosted by the Antigua Yacht Club and sponsored by Panerai and part of the Panerai Classic Yacht Challenge, wrapped up this evening with a sumptuous buffet supper outside the Copper & Lumber Store Hotel in Nelson's Dockyard accompanied by an impressive big screen slideshow presentation of the Regatta highlights as photographed by the many press photographers who covered the racing for newspapers and magazines around the globe.
Earlier in the afternoon competition on the water in front of the Admirals' Inn was fearsome when regatta crew joined by local families and friends, enjoyed the fun of the annual gig racing and cream tea party. Any ideas of sailing around the short course were abandoned due to the unusually still wind conditions but plenty of fun was had by all manner of ages in all manner of small craft and gigs rowing and sculling, (not without a few bumps and a sinking !) giving spectator's a highly entertaining afternoon. The setting for the event, in the beautiful gardens of the Admiral's Inn was 'picture perfect' made all the more so by the elegantly dressed volunteer tea ladies who as very much a part of this special event serve traditional English style afternoon cream teas, sandwiches, cakes and other tea time treats.
This afternoon's event was generously hosted by the Admirals' Inn Hotel and sponsored by Watermaker Services and Lord Jim's Locker of Antigua and as the sun went down, the stage was set a short stroll away for the elaborate prize-giving ceremony on the waterfront in Nelson's Dockyard.
Following welcome speeches by the Minister of Tourism for Antigua, the Hon John Maginly and, representing Panerai in the Caribbean Julio Sato, regatta Chairman Kenny Coombs took to the stage to kick off proceedings with a big and much deserved thank you to all those who had worked so hard behind the scenes to make such a successful event, with special thanks going to the owner of this years' committee boat 'Tivoli' and John Spenlinhaur.
Following a run through of the winners of the Single-Handed race with many trophies and prizes to award the ceremony cracked on at a good pace amidst riotous and enthusiastic applause. Amongst the first of the trophies to be awarded, the stunning half model Carriacou sloop trophy donated by John Bertola of 'Superyachts Supermodels' appropriately went to Eli Fuller and his Carriacou sloop, Zemi. Keeping the trophies in Antigua, Famous Mauro, (of pizza fame!) again this year collected the Hinkley Yachts Trophy for Classic GRP Class and Carlo Falcone and Mariella won the A& F trophy for best performance of a local yacht. Juno took the Nicholson Yacht Charters Trophy for best charter boat and the gorgeous schooner Elena swept the board in Classic Class A, picking up five trophies to tumultuous applause. The Spirit of Regatta trophy and the Woodstock prize justifiably were both awarded to the character full Rosa and Cora A won her own 'Comfort Zone' trophy for best performance over shortened course. Tree House Body Shop judged Alert as being the best dressed crew and much applause greeted Phil Kerin when he was called to the stage to collect a special prize this year donated by the crew of 'Old Bob' for 'The person who worked hardest to get his boat (St Briac) ready for Classics'. Bolero did very well in her class winning three trophies and Velsheda as last year, beat Ranger to first in the Spirit of Tradition Class A, the Ann Wallis White Trophy for the Largest Boat this year went to Marie. First Overall in the Classic & Vintage Class and collecting the Wayfarer Marine Trophy was Lone Fox and this year's winner of the Mount Gay Rum Trophy was the beautiful Sparkman and Stephen's, Bolero.
The moment everyone was waiting for came at the end of the evening when the proud owner of the beautiful 1957 Marconi ketch Lone Fox, Ira Epstein was awarded the much prized Panerai Trophy and the stunning and special edition Panerai Timepiece, a fitting ending to a highly successful 2011 24th. Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge Antigua Classic Yacht Regatta.
"It is a true festival of joy, pride and enthusiasm which is a credit to owners and crews alike."
Richard Matthews - Founder Oyster Marine
Photos © Tim Wright www.photoaction.com.
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