Sports — 21 April 2018 — by Keith Hardwick
Corozal Bay Sailing Regatta

BELIZE CITY, Mon. Apr. 16, 2018– Corozal Bay Sailing Club hosted their 8th Annual Regatta over the weekend of the 14th and 15th, April at Jam Rock Café on the beautiful sea front of Corozal Town.  The competition consisted of 6 races each for the Optimist and Laser Class-One design boats over the 2 days of the weekend.  Four races were scheduled for Saturday and 2 races for Sunday.

Excitement was high with the commencement of the first races on Saturday at 11:30 a.m. under a very firm breeze gusting to 15 knots.  The Optimists started first in these challenging conditions, the wind constantly building, and eventually forcing most of the competitors to retire to the calmer setting of the beach.  The Optimist competitors range in age from 10 to 15 years, and by the end of the day Adya and Peter were the only sailors to complete 3 of the races over the 1.6 mile course.  A mighty congratulations to all the children who challenged themselves to take part, and the Corozal Bay Sailing Club and their supporters who provided full safety coverage.

Bravado was, of course, running high with the laser class sailors, who consisted of 6 young men aged 14 to 18.  The wind continued to build over the afternoon with gusts of over 20 knots recorded, which caused the retirement of 2 lasers out of the 6 that started.  The sight of planing Lasers was wonderful as they battled, head to head, over their 2.3 mile course.  There were several capsizes, as the sailors had to learn in these conditions, all to the amusement of the shoreline spectators.

Sunday was a different day entirely, with the arrival of a “cold front” overnight and the complete absence of a breeze at 9:00 a.m.  At 10:00 a.m., there was a slight offshore breeze, and a shorter course was laid to accommodate the variable conditions.  4 races for the Optimists were held, and 2 more to complete the Laser races.  The breeze was firm and the sailing skillful, to reflect the conditions, rather than survival of the previous day.

Ultimately, a series for each class was completed.

In the Optimist Class, first was 15 year old Peter Joo of Placencia Sailing Club; second, 13 year old Adyaneire Teck of Corozal Bay Sailing Club; and third, 14 year old Abner Lopez of Placencia Sailing Club.

In the Laser Class, first was 15 year old Trent Hardwick of SJC High School; second, 18 year old Wilson Rivera of Placencia Sailing Club; and third 15 year old Devaughn Morrison of Corozal Bay Sailing Club.

A special thanks to the new Mayor of Corozal Town, Rigoberto Vellos, who graciously gave up his Sunday afternoon to present the prizes and put his weight behind the sporting event.

(Picture above provided by Sharon Hardwick, Chair, BzSA – Belize Sailing Association).

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