A challenging weekend in St Thomas for VI youth sailors

By BVI Royal Yacht Club

Ryan Lettsome placed second in U10 white fleet at St Thomas International Optimist Regatta. Photo: Matias Capizzano

Ryan Lettsome placed second in U10 white fleet at St Thomas International Optimist Regatta. Photo: Matias Capizzano

The 2016 St Thomas International Optimist Regatta, presented by EMS Virgin Islands, took place from 17-19 June with the BVI represented by five sailors. Conditions throughout the weekend were very challenging with strong winds and big swell on the race course.

Four sailors raced in the 80-boat Championship fleet, Rayne Duff (red), Nathan Haycraft (blue), Ryan Lettsome (white) and Max Reshetiloff (red).

2014 champion, Rayne Duff was looking to re-take the title from rival, Mia Nicolosi but it was not to be this year. Despite winning more races than the ISV sailor, Duff also posted uncharacteristic scores on day one. A capsize in the first race lead to a 25th place finish and 21st in the final race on Friday was too much to recover from.

Unable to discard both of these double-digit scores, Duff ended the championship on a high with wins in the final two races but had to settle for fourth overall and third in the red fleet. Also racing in the red fleet was Max Reshetiloff who finished in 62nd overall and 34th in the red fleet.

Blue fleet racer Nathan Haycraft had a consistent weekend, taking his best finish in race six with a sixth. Finishing in 15th place overall secured fourth place in the blue fleet.

Ryan Lettsome finished in 56th place overall which earned him second place in the white fleet for sailors under 10. Lettsome sailed a consistent series with his best result coming in race seven which he finished in 37th place.

Twenty eight sailors competed in the green fleet and over the three days they completed 25 races. Kael Chalwell, who recently graduated from the KATS programme and joined the BVI Race Team, was competing at his first overseas regatta and finished an excellent 15th position. Chalwell put in a very solid performance, with seven race finishes in the top ten and a best race finish of third.

Next up for Team BVI is the Optimist North American Championships from 10-18 July in Antigua. Representing the BVI will be Rayne Duff, Nathan Haycraft, Kyle Roose and Ryan Lettsome.

Red Fleet
3 Rayne Duff (4th overall)
34 Max Reshetiloff (62 overall)

Blue Fleet
4 Nathan Haycraft (15 overall)

White Fleet
2 – Ryan Lettsome (56 overall)

Green Fleet
15 – Kael Chalwell

Click here for photos