September 13th – Simpson Bay, St. Maarten - Bart's Bash is a global sailing race which also functions as an annual fundraiser and participation in sailing campaign. The sailing community around the world sails on the same weekend, making this the largest sail race in the world. The Sint Maarten Yacht Club hosted the event on September 11 and saw 24 teams compete, divided over 4 classes, of which 7 teams that came from the Friar’s Bay Sailing Club.
The Laser Pico class saw 4 participants, most who we haven’t seen for a while on the racecourse. Param Jessani, Rio Stomp and Massimo LaPierre offered Melina de Vries, second place Laser Pico winner of last season, strong competition. Melina came in third place, with Param Jassani taking the win in the Laser Pico class after breaking a tie with Rio Stomp.
In the Optimist Class 5 competitors from Friar’s Bay Sailing Club battled it out. Paul Berlande Pages came in third place, with Sarah Michaux in second place and the class was won by Emilien le Normand with 3 points difference.
There were 3 RS Quests on the water, Robbie Ferron and his wife Cary Byerley, John Darling and his son Henry, and Liz and Nigel, all the way from the Hong Kong Yacht Club. The Darlings sailed strong, and progress is showing since their participation in the Lagoonies Regatta. Liz and Nigel sailed well and consistently came in second place, until the final race when they took a first from Robbie and Cary who sailed 3 straight bullets. They still won the class with a 2-point difference.
The Laser class was very popular with 12 competitors, many from the Laser group of the youth sailing program. Emma Lennox sailed extremely well, with one first place and it won’t be long before she consistently makes the top 3. She ended in fourth place with only 1 point behind third place winner Justin Pieterse. Jolyon Ferron took second place and Benoit Meesemacker convincingly took first, winning 3 out of 4 races.
Results of all 4 races can be found here. The first race counted towards the Bart’s Bash and the results of this race can be found here. Find out how you did compared to all the other racers in the world! There will also be a special Caribbean Leaderboard to see inter-island results.
The Bart’s Bash is an annual fundraiser and the SMYC was raising funds through a bake sale to be able to replace the stolen dinghy. 6 Families (members, friends of the Yacht Club and parents of the children participating in the Youth Sailing Program) baked delicious cakes, cupcakes, brownies, and breads to sell. In addition, ZeeBest Bakery donated an assortment of fresh pastries. A total of $560 was raised through the bake sale, which made it a fantastic success.
“We are most grateful for the interest in this event. Of course, the amazing turnout, but also from all the volunteers who stepped up to make the event and fundraiser happen. Paul, Clenda and Carin as Race Committee, Esther for taking pictures, Junior for Mark laying, Grace and Sam for coaching and of course all those who baked goods, Rikke for selling these and all others for buying and donating to our cause. We are looking forward to the start of the Grant Thornton Dinghy Championship Series on October 9th! Said Saskia Revelman, Head Instructor at the SMYC.
Pictures can be found online.
For our entire race calendar and much more visit smyc.com/calendar
About Bart’s Bash
Taking place at 100s of venues, with 1000s of sailors in 100s of different classes of boat around the world. The event was founded in 2014 and verified by Guinness World Records as ‘The Largest Sailing Race in the World’. It is open to all sailing clubs, yacht clubs, schools, universities, scout groups, sea cadets, windsurfing clubs, individuals and any venue globally that can host a race and is inspired to take part. Bart’s Bash gives the sailing community a united opportunity to remember Andrew 'Bart' Simpson, a double Olympic medalist who tragically lost his life whilst training for the America’s Cup in 2013.
The Andrew Simpson Foundation (ASF) uses this event alongside being a memorial, for an annual fundraising and participation campaign. Their mission is to give our youth the opportunity to learn and enjoy sailing and racing. Sailing nurtures and builds confidence, team skills, self-reliance, physical strength, quick thinking and a love for the environment.
About the Sint Maarten Yacht Club:
Established in 1980 with the goal to promote sailing on the island of St Maarten. It organizes multiple sailing events throughout the year, with the St Maarten Heineken Regatta as its crown jewel. A youth sailing program stimulates local youngsters to become part of the sailing community, teaching them life skills like team work, perseverance and confidence. Always looking to further develop sailing on St Maarten, the Club is active in promoting the sport, as well as the beautiful destination it is located at. For more information visit www.smyc.com