A great weekend was had by our Corozal Bay Youth Sailors. They have successfully completed their first Regatta! Bud and Ann Dixon, Perry Chow and Gerhard Cordts proceeded to Honey Camp Lagoon on Friday afternoon, with camping equipment, 3 Optimist sailboats, Perry's jet-ski and Bud's Hobie Cat Getaway. Libby Fitzgerald and Kyler Cordts brought the 4 youth sailors late Friday afternoon, after they got out of school. Friday evening there was roasting marshmallows around the camp fire and making new friends for our youth sailors.
Saturday, all youth sailors, from all over Belize (San Pedro, Caye Caulker, Liberty, Belize City, and others), participated in some training and practice sailing. They were broken into 4 groups: one group worked with Andy Milner, from San Pedro, on parts of the Optimist and how to use the winds when sailing; one group worked with Richard Archer, of the BzSA, on strategies of sailing; another group went with Bud and Gerhard on the Hobie Cat, sailing around the lagoon; and the last group took Optimists and practiced sailing around the lagoon with Perry following on his jet-ski. They switch groups after about an hour. Our youth sailors had the time of their lives! Each and everyone of them kept telling us how much they were learning and what fun they were having all day. That night, they made even more new friends as the rest of the youth sailors had arrived early Saturday afternoon.
Sunday was a beautiful day for sailing: nice steady winds; beautiful white clouds in the sky; people from all over Belize to cheer the youth sailors; and the excitement of the races! There were about 20 members from CYCL cheering our youth sailors. The youth sailors were split-up into 3 groups of 12 to 13 sailors per heat. The first 5 places of each heat would participate in the final Optimist race. The first heat had Angel, he did a superb job, but did not place for the final. Seth, was in the second heat, he also did an outstanding job, but did not place for the final. The third heat had Niurka and Darwin. Niurka was keeping up with them all, and did a fantastic job, but she, as well, did not place for the final race. Darwin, was in the lead the whole way, and he placed 3rd in his heat. So he would be racing in the Optimist finals. I'm sure you all could of heard us cheering in Consejo and the Corozal area, even our members who are back in Canada!!! After a short rest for the youth sailors, the Optimist finals started. Darwin came in 2nd place. You never saw a prouder group than his fellow youth sailors from Consejo. In first place was a young girl from San Pedro and in third place was a young girl from Belize City. It was nice to see that there was a winner from different sailing clubs.
Later in the day, other classes of sailboats started competing. Several members from the CYCL participated in Sunfish and Pico races. In the Pico Double's race: Darwin sailed with Gerhard; Seth sailed with Bud; and Angel sailed with Joshua McKenzie of the Belize City Sea Scouts. Well... Angel and Joshua came in first!!!! Way to go Angel!!!!! Then it was time to pack up and head home. We were all a little sad to be leaving.
Congratulations to all participants at the Honey Camp Lagoon Regatta. Job well done! Thank you to all members who came out to support and cheer on the youth sailors. Your support meant so much to the them.
We can't thank the BzSA enough for a wonderful Regatta. Andy Aspinal's place on Honey Camp Lagoon was perfect for a Regatta. We all look forward to next year's Regatta at Honey Camp Lagoon.
The next Regatta will be in San Pedro on Sunday, June 24th. We will be sending out information on this Regatta soon.
Photos and commentary provided by the Consejo Yacht Club and Audrey Shabbas