Sunday, 7 October 2012

Event: Bahamas Optimist National Championships 2012

October 5th and 6th 2012.

Harbour Island Sailing Club hosted what we understand was the biggest regatta ever to be held in the Bahamas – The Bahamas Optimist Nationals 2012 - on Friday and Saturday, 5th and 6th October.   Sailing clubs from New Providence, Grand Bahama, Long Island, Abaco, Governor’s Harbour, Cayman Islands travelled to Harbour Island to join our own Harbour Island club members for this junior sailing event.  In all 89 sailors, 8 to 15 years of age attended and completed 7 very competitive races over the two days.    The fleet is split into the Green Fleet for less experienced sailors and the Championship Fleet for the more advanced.

Championship Fleet Results and Highlights
Action at the leeward mark in race #7
-Robert Dunkley
41 sailors raced in the Championship Fleet, this fleet is split into the White Fleet (10 years old and under), the Blue Fleet (11 and 12 year olds) and the Red Fleet (13, 14 and 15 year olds) with trophies given out in each fleet to first, second, third place and the top girl in each fleet.  The Championship Fleet is then awarded overall trophies across all fleets. 

·     12 year old Spencer Cartwright of the Nassau Yacht Club retained his title and the Geoffrey Holowesko floating trophy as Overall Championship Fleet First Place. 

·      11 year old Melisha Higgins of the Harbour Island Sailing, daughter of the Harbour Island Sailing Club’s Commodore won Top Girl Overall in the Championship Fleet, placing 6th – a particular highlight for our club!

Tristan Eldon (#11) just edging out
Paul de Souza (#197)
at the finish line to take second
place in race #5
-Robert Dunkley
·      10 year old Tristan Eldon also of the Nassau Yacht Club won his Fleet Division and came 4th overall – an amazing achievement for such a young sailor.

·      Sailors from the Mack Knowles Junior Sailing Club, Long Island and the Abaco Junior Sailing Association also placed well and received many awards for their clubs.

Green Fleet Results and Highlights
48 sailors took part in the Green Fleet.   This fleet is for less experienced sailors who are sailing in the Nationals for the first time.  These races encourage the kids to participate in a Regatta without too much pressure to achieve fantastic results and are coached around the course.

We are delighted with our achievement in running what was a hugely successful Regatta enjoyed by all with the Harbour Island community pulling together to ensure that all the sailors and their families had a great time.

 It would not have been possible without the kind support of our sponsors, Bahamas Ferries, Pink Sands, Coral Sands, Sip Sip, RBC, Rock House, Paul King of King & Co, Johnson’s Rentals and Coca Cola.  We also had fantastic donations from our many friends here on Harbour Island to whom we are extremely grateful.

-Rosemary Clarke

For further information:
Rosemary Clarke, Club Secretary 242 359 7475 or

Spencer Cartwright completing his tack at the finish line to win the Bahamas Optimist National Championship 2012 and retain his title as National Champion.
-Robert Dunkley

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