Steel Pulse Lit up Nelson’s Dockyard and the Italian Stallions ruled in the Nonsuch Bay RS Elite Challenge.
Tuesday April 28 – Thousands of people packed out Nelson’s Dockyard Marina for the massive live music night at Antigua Sailing Week. Locals and sailors were in a party mood for a memorable evening and the main act, reggae sensation Steel Pulse delivered a high energy set that lit up the stage. Jamaican Ed Robinson and Antigua’s own, famous Soca artiste, Tian Winter as well as Asher Otto and Itchy Feet charged up the atmosphere before Steel Pulse took to the stage, reeling off a number of top hits including Roller Skate and Life Without Music. With Lay Day to follow, the party went well on into the night, the bars and grills in the village were open for business and Abracadabra’s was swinging until dawn.
Wednesday April 29 – The Nonsuch Bay RS Elite Challenge started at 1pm with eight international teams vying for the winner takes-all-prize of a one-week bed and breakfast stay at the outstanding award winning Nonsuch Bay Resort. Hundreds of people watched the racing from the beach and enjoyed a sumptuous barbecue prepared by 2011 Caribbean Chef of the Year, Mitchell Husbands. Sailing Anarchy’s Mr. Clean, Smile and Wave’s Jaime Torres and Antigua Sailing Week’s Louay Habib provided race commentary and the occasional competition for a cold Presidente Beer.
In the first flight defending champion Peter Holmberg, racing with his brother John and nephew Kai on Team CSA, showed their intent breezing into the final. Marc Fitzgerald’s Team Sojana also made the final after a great battle with Team Phaedo skippered by Brian Thompson and St. Martin’s own, Kick ’em Jenny. In the second flight, the Italian team At Last… skippered by Pietro Corbucci showed their amazing skills. The Italian stallions won all three flights. Lucy Jones’ Performance Yacht Charter team won an intense battle for second place, deposing Nicole Lameter, a long-time Antigua Sailing Week bareboat participant with KH+P yachtcharter from Germany and also Nonsuch Bay resident, Martin Beck’s all Antiguan team, Sheer Madness.
The final was thrilling right from the start. An eager defending champion, Peter Holmberg was called over the line and despite returning to start correctly, the Olympic and America’s Cup helmsman was never going to catch the others. Pietro Corbucci’s Team At Last… won the final with a race to spare beating Team CSA into second with Lucy Jones’ Team Performance Yacht Charter completing the podium.
Mark Whinney, Sales & Marketing Director at Nonsuch Bay Resort was happy to see so many people turning out to watch this popular Lay Day event, now in its third year: “We at Nonsuch Bay are passionate about sailing and love holding events, so the RS Elite Challenge works well for us. We were looking for a way of getting the Elites involved in Antigua Sailing Week and this stadium event was the perfect fit. It’s great to see so many international sailors taking part this year and congratulations to Pietro Corbucci from Team At Last…for such a decisive win. They will be able to enjoy their week at Nonsuch Bay, which includes use of all the water sports equipment and we have seven types of sailboats including other watersports: kayaks, SUPs and kitesurfing.
“We look forward to welcoming the Italians back and certainly they’ve already expressed interest in coming to race in some of our other regattas at Nonsuch next year,” concluded Whinney after another successful and popular Nonsuch Bay RS Elite Challenge.
The Lay Day Party went on long into the evening with Team Pocket Rocket winning the tug of war and it was a beauty and beast show in the bikini competition with some of the male sailors strutting their stuff with some of Antigua Sailing Week’s gorgeous beauties. Racing at Antigua Sailing Week continues today with two races scheduled.