Antigua Dragon Yacht Club - Challenge - 2nd-9th
Harmony Hall Yacht Club, with the support of the Antigua
Yacht Club Marina and The Inn at English Harbour, is currently
hosting the inaugural Antigua Dragon Yacht Club Challenge
with nine races scheduled to take place over five days in
idyllic Caribbean conditions on identical Petticrows Dragons.
The event will consist of eight teams, each representing a
different yacht club from around the world, sailing in a friendly
competition to determine the overall champion. The winning
Yacht Club will then earn itself paid entry and accommodation
at the Antigua Yacht Club Marina Resort to defend its title
the following year.
The schedule will mainly consist of both inshore and offshore
short course racing on the south coast of Antigua, with one
day saved for a 24-mile offshore distance race up to Nonsuch
Bay and back for lunch at the Clubhouse.
In the Corinthian spirit, the distance day will be followed
by a Lay Day in order to recover, relax, chill at the beach,
play some golf or simply discover Antigua. The series will
culminate with a double scoring
Medal race to wrap up the week of trade wind sailing on a
Winners of the America's Cup and Olympic Games will be representing
international yacht clubs and taking part in a week long regatta
incorporating inshore and coastal racing with social occasions
at some of Antigua's most exclusive locations.
Royal Yacht Squadron - Poul Hoj-Jensen is
one of Denmark's most decorated sailors and has taken part
in nine Dragon World Championships, winning on two occasions.
Poul is a multiple one-design world champion and has competed
at four Olympic Games, winning two Gold and one Silver Medal.
Yacht Club Costa Smeralda – Mauro Pelaschier is one
of Italy's finest helmsman competing in the America's Cup
and Grand Prix events, as skipper for Team Azzura. A highly
accomplished Finn sailor, Mauro has won the Italian National
Finn Championship on nine occasions and has represented Italy
twice at the Olympic Games.
Harmony Hall YC – In September 2013,
Shannon Falcone became the first Antiguan to win the America's
Cup as part of Larry Ellison's Team Oracle. Shannon has also
competed with Team Puma in the last two editions of the Volvo
Ocean Race. For the regatta he will be joined by fellow America's
Cup winner, Italian Gillo Nobili, to form a formidable partnership
for the host yacht club.
Fort Lauderdale YC – American, Mike
Toppa has competed in seven America's Cup campaigns as sailor
and designer, winning the auld mug on two separate occasions.
Toppa is one of the United States most decorated sailors winning
World Championship titles in various classes.
Federacion de Vela de Puerto Rico – Eric Tulla, twice
voted Puerto Rican sailor of the year, Eric is one of the
toughest competitors in the Caribbean. Eric has won titles
in everything from multihulls to grand prix big boats and
represented Puerto Rico in the Soling Class at the Los Angeles
Olympics. Eric Tulla has been racing for decades and in recent
years has become an International Judge and is the current
Vice-President of ISAF.
Antigua YC – Karl James has represented
Antigua & Barbuda in the Laser Class at two Olympic Games
and won the Caribbean Laser championship five times in succession.
Karl is the senior instructor at the Antigua Yacht Club and
National Sailing Academy and has expert local knowledge to
compliment first class boat handling skills.
Monaco YC – Carlo Falcone represented
Antigua & Barbuda in the Star Class at the Barcelona Olympics
and is a founding member of the Harmony Hall YC and this inaugural
event. Carlo has been a regular competitor at Antigua Sailing
Week and Antigua Classics for decades winning both events.
Carlo will skipper his classic 80ft sloop Mariella in this
year's RORC Caribbean 600.
Wild Card – The event organisers have
chosen to keep aside one Dragon for a wild card entry.
“Poul is the man to beat.” commented challenge
organiser, Carlo Falcone, “Since we started the class
seven years ago, nobody has beaten him in a Dragon regatta
in Antigua. However the Antigua Dragon YC Challenge has some
of the best sailors that have ever raced Dragons here. The
challenge is a friendly event and the Dragons will be chosen
by drawing lots and the rig settings may not be adjusted.
However, the competitors will be using every trick in the
book to win. There will be a mixture of inshore and offshore
racing to give a great diversification of courses. The top
mark for the inshore racing will be right in front of the
Antigua Yacht Club Marina and the offshore races will finish
in view of some of Antigua's best resorts and dining establishments,
whilst the Prize Giving Ceremony will be hosted by The Inn
at English Harbour.”