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31 March 2004, 09:31 am
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BVI Spring Regatta

Nanny Cay Marina & Hotel in Tortola held a welcome party on Monday evening prior to the start of the second annual BVI Sailing Festival, a three-day warm up for the BVI Spring Regatta taking place this coming weekend.
Sixty boats in the festival raced yesterday to Virgin Gorda's North Sound and the Bitter End Yacht Club before racing back for the Nanny Cay Cup on Thursday.

The BVI Spring Regatta is one of the Caribbean's premier annual racing events attracting boats and crews from around the world, both amateur and professional. Already 117 entries have been registered for the regatta but this figure is set to increase before the start on Friday.

However, those of us not lucky enough to be enjoying some of the best sailing conditions the Caribbean has to offer and to feel the 'sand between our toes' each evening whilst sipping the obligatory Painkiller Cocktail at the Regatta Village bar, will have to make do with watching fellow sailors via a new regatta webcam: : Barfly cam is situated at Peglegs bar and restaurant near the entrance to the marina. Also, if you wish to check out the local weather, you can do so via the new live weather station online:

Nanny Cay Marina & Hotel is quickly establishing itself as the premier facility for events in the Caribbean and now plays host to several other major events throughout the year including: The UBS Oyster Regatta, HIHO International Windsurfing Regatta, and one of the major televised big game fishing competitions - the Xtreme Billfishing Release League.

Owner Cameron MCCOLL recently presented a two-year plan to develop the regatta event facility in the British Virgin Islands and competitors taking part this year will see a marked improvement on the infrastructure over previous years. "We have a master planning architect working on the project and from the preliminary drawings and plans I've seen, I'm confident that we're going to have a venue that is not only the best in the BVI but also the Caribbean."

The marina has been dredged to 14 feet allowing for deeper access and for big boats to be docked together at the heart of the shoreside activities. Also, a new beachfront has been created and this additional space provides an ample 'dinghy park' and plenty of room for the new and improved regatta village.

The BVI Spring Regatta & Sailing Festival has developed a reputation for serious competition and serious partying. The regatta village bar is open every day after racing with food booths and live music until midnight. Before, during and after the races the regatta village at Nanny Cay Marina takes on a carnival-like atmosphere with food, drinks, games, dancing and other forms of entertainment for landlubbers and yachtsmen who converge to eat, drink and make merry.

Racing enthusiasts who have experienced the BVI Spring Regatta return year after year and they all agree that you have not sailed until you sail the waters of the BVI. This year, one such lucky competitor includes Sarah KAFETZ. Having raced only in the first weekend of Skandia Cowes Week in 2003, she had to return to work in London but continued to listen to the live commentary on Cowes Radio via the internet. Having answered a competition question correctly whilst in Cowes, she secured a place in the finals and went on to win the main prize, a sailing charter of a lifetime, courtesy of Nanny Cay based Horizon Yacht Charters. She and several lucky friends are now in Tortola taking part in the BVI Spring Regatta.
Trish Jenkins (As Amended By ISAF News Editor)
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