SIMPSON BAY--?After a challenging four-days of unusual Caribbean light weather, close competition on the race course and an adventurous island tour of St.Maarten /St. Martin and St. Barth’s for the cruising set.
The 6th running of the Caribbean Multihull Challenge Race and Rally concluded at the prize giving ceremony on the grounds of the host organization, the St. Maarten Yacht Club on Sunday. The Most Worthy Performer prize went to Alexis de Boucaud’s Diam 24 Merlin, which strung together eight victories in a 12-race series to win the 10-boat class of trimarans. In presenting the award, CMC steering committee member Robbie Ferron had high praise for the popular, growing fleet of one-design multihulls, which are taking the island by storm. “The Caribbean has never seen a fleet of this quality with racing this close and competitive,” he said. “It was very, very impressive.” There was no shortage of talent in the CSA 1 class, with a pair of 66-foot heavyweights trading punches throughout the 8-race series. Aboard Ricardo Pavoncelli’s Gunboat 66 Mana, the crew included two offshore legends: Brit Brian Thompson and Frenchman Loick Peyron. But American Todd Slynstad’s squad on Nemo was no slouch, and included pro sailors Ryan Breymaier, Mat Bryant and Jan Majer. It was a winning combination, as Nemo registered three bullets on the final day of racing to seal the CSA 1 championship. The weather presented few issues for the 16 yachts in the Rally portion of the event, which visited Great Bay, Orient Bay, Anse Marcel and St. Barth’s over the course of their travels, a movable feast which featured shoreside parties, music and food all along the way. When all was over, at the prizegiving a pair of Rally entries also scored awards: Pierre Yves-Legris’s Alibi 65 Surprise won the time trials in which boats were challenged to predict their expected times of each leg of the Rally. And Ron Boehm’s Antrim Perry 52 Little Wing took home a pair of prizes, for both the Navigational Challenge and the Bingo Card Challenge, in which the Rally boats were charged with completing a host of tasks along the way.