Wave of visitors here to race

The Cayman Islands Sailing Club
will be hosting Race Cayman starting from today through until Friday.

This is the largest international
sailing event ever to be held in Cayman and underpins the growth of sailing in
Cayman and the development of young Caymanian sailors to an Olympic standard.

With registrations now closed the club
is set and prepared to showcase this sailing event, which features the Youth
Olympic Games Regional Qualifier, the Byte CII North American Championship and
the CISC International Invitational J/22 Regatta.

Over 80 sailors are registered in
the event with 17 countries represented from around the North American and Caribbean
region and Europe. A total of 25 races will be
held over the six days. In addition, a large contingent of visiting officials,
coaches, team leaders and families will add to the international mix. With an
army of volunteers and a fleet of race committee and support boats, the North
Sound will be action packed this week.

The Minister of Sports, the Hon
Mark Scotland gave his feelings on this week’s race.

“We are really excited about the
Race Cayman sailing event and particularly Cayman being chosen to host the
North American and Caribbean Youth Olympic Games qualifier.

“This event builds on both Cayman’s
sailing heritage and helps to promote sports tourism in Cayman. We wish all the
teams fair winds and may the best team win.”

Thirty-six young sailors, aged
between 14 and 17 years, will be competing in the Byte events, hoping to
qualify their nation for the Youth Olympic Games in Singapore this August. 

Lizzy Wauchope, Chris Delaney,
Oliver Fogarty and Ben Williams will be competing for Cayman in the Byte class
against the best young sailors in the region, including strong teams from Bermuda, Canada,
Netherland Antilles, Barbados,
Jamaica, Cuba, Dominican
Republic, Guatemala,
Spain, St Lucia, USVI and USA.

“Local support for the event has
been tremendous” commented Regatta Organiser Jane Moon. “We are most grateful
to the CI Government and in particular the Ministry of Sport, the Department of
Customs, Department of Immigration and the CI Airport Authority and also to the
Cayman Islands Olympic Committee who have all given generous and helpful
support to the event.

“A wide range of local businesses
have come on board and company logos will be featured on many of the competing
boats. It promises to be a very exciting sight to see the sailing competition
on the water featuring so many of our local sponsors.”

The youth are also well represented
in the J/22 class where the DMS/CISC youth sailing team of Thomas Hanson,
Thomas Bishop and Kayla Ramos will be taking on the local and international
competition in that event.

In addition 2009 Most Improved
Sailor Dejean Solomon will be joining one of the two visiting J/22 crews from
the UK.
The Cayman J/22 teams which have qualified for the event are current local
champions Compass Marine (Mike Farrington, Matt Diaz and Sam Dawson), together
with the Mayhem crew of Jo Richards, Mark Edmunds, Ken Holland and Jennifer
Deacon and the Ciao! crew of Tomeaka McTaggart, Paul Johnston, Nick Taylor and
Lindsey Macfee.

All of those exceptional sailors can
expect some tough competition from the visitors from Bermuda,
Bahamas, Canada, Jamaica
and the UK
with 11 boats in the fleet.

As well as a full schedule of
racing, the club is hosting a number of social events ranging from a happy hour
BBQ featuring steel pan music, to a disco party, to a formal prize giving dinner.

The club encourages everyone to
come and watch the most exciting sailing regatta to be held in the Cayman Islands, either from a boat in the North Sound or
on the land from the club, and also to enjoy some of the social events.

The organizing committee of volunteers
has been working since September last year to put this exciting event together
and so will be fun for all the family.

Further information is available from the Cayman
Islands Sailing Club www.sailing.ky or from the event website
www.bytechamps.org.

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