Fifth annual MDR zooms into action

The fifth annual Ugland Offshore Racing Million Dollar Run, presented by The Residences at The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman wrapped up at Kaibo on Monday with much fanfare, a press release said.

Songstress Tami Chynn serenaded a moonlit Kaibo beach, as Captains, guests, sponsors and organizers celebrated a successful event.

‘In every way possible, this event exceeded our expectations,’ said Event Managing Director Kenny Rankin. ‘This bodes very well for future events at Monster Media and for the future of the boat race.’

After an excitement-filled final captains meeting in the Kaibo VIP lounge, twelve teams hit the water for the short but intense race at 1pm.

Despite buzz about more than one Captain including two time winner Dale Crighton, it was Andreas Ugland, Jr. – son of former winner and fellow Captain Andreas Ugland, Jr – who went home with the Crighton Properties Best Time trophy.

In a double win, Junior (as he was fondly called by organizers) took home the Paramount Carpets Best Hand poker prize, as well.

As part of his winnings, Junior captured prize booty including a Breitling Steelfish timepiece courtesy of Breitling and Kirk Freeport, a Motorola Pebl handset, courtesy of Cable and Wireless, and US$12,500 in total cash winnings.

‘This is incredible,’ said Andreas Ugland Jr. ‘This event is always a lot of fun but there is really nothing like winning.’

Other big winners included team Curtis White, headed up by driver Anthony Lawson. The team managed to bag both the Grand Island Design Best Crew prize for their 10-strong bevy of Belvedere-clad female ‘crew members’ and the Massive Equipment Outlaw Class prize, a category reserved for smaller crafts with less than 500 horsepower. First time competitor Lewis Ebanks won the Watler’s Metal Products Best Craft prize for his 46 foot Super-V Black Thunder, which stole the show with a bright orange, yellow and purple candy paint job and customized interior.

There were several other big winners at MDR. Ms Jessica Bodden took home the grand prize of an all expenses paid trip for two to Arendal, Norway for the Class 1 World Powerboat Championships in July, courtesy of Andreas and Natalie Ugland.

Proceeds from the raffle were donated to the MDR official 2007 charity organization Junior Achievement. The Cayman Islands Seafarer’s Association will also be presented with a monetary gift, following the event. A charity silent auction on the preceding Friday at the MDR Banquet at The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman also raised money for Junior Achievement. There, supporters such as Mike Harrington who picked up a Breitling Superocean timepiece for $3,000, bid on items to raise funds for the cause. Art from the Morgan Gallery was also on offer and helped to raise additional funds.

By 7pm, Notch and Local Motion were performing to a packed beach at Kaibo and, following, Tami Chynn took the stage to thunderous applause. Singing hits such as ‘1,2,3,4’ and ‘Hyperventilating’ got the beach rocking until late in the night, making a perfect end to Million Dollar Run 2007..

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