Sam’s Caribbean Campaign started with Grenada Sailing Week, running from 29th January to the 3rd of February.Jo Cave, Josh Pennell (non member) and I sailed Sam down from
Antigua, arriving as planned on Wed 28 Jan. There we were joined by the rest of the crew – Joe Cross, Bjorn Wentlandt and Zoe Lyall. Although the event ‘started’ on 29 Jan, that was in actual fact registration day, so we registered. Then we went for a practice/training sail.
The first part of the regatta is based at Port Louis, just across the harbour from the capital, St. Georges. Port Louis is a modern marina operated by Camper & Nicholson and very nice it is too. Racing is based there for the Friday and Saturday, when the final race took us round the coast to Prickly Bay where we had a lay-day on the Sunday and 2 more days racing on Mon and Tues.
So havng practiced and trained hard on the Thursday, we were keen for the first race to begin. We got a good start and worked our way up the first beat and we were pleased to round the mark in first place. And that was about as well as we did all week! Our best result was third in one race, apart from that we were about mid fleet.
After the frist day’s racing as is often the case in Caribbean regattas, there was a Mount Gay Rum party where they were handing out the well known red caps (these are valuable as they entitle you to a free distillery tour in Barbados – otherwise it costs about 8 USD), somehow I managed to get one that said ‘BVI Spring Regatta’ rather than ‘Grenada Sailing Week’. Unfortunately I lost it later that evening. (But I have several and have already done the distillery tour!)
From the Saturday we were based at Prickly Bay. Sunday was lay-day, giving crews the opportunity to see a bit more of the island, which is spectacular and well worth a tour, or simply chilling out on the beach and drinking beer. Most of our crew did the latter as they had either seen the island before, or were staying on for a few days after racing so they would have the opportunity for ‘being a tourist’ then.
2 more days racing and a very good prize-giving party and suddenly the reagatta was over. Grenada is a fabulous island, one of the most beautiful of the windward islands so I was glad to be able to do the regatta there. With only 6 on board we struggled a bit but always coped and had a laugh all the way round the course.