Party people in search of the first major sporting event of the year trekked out to the East End Surf Challenge on Heroes Day.
The first public holiday on the calendar always marks awards in George Town and the Jet Ski races and fish tea cooking competition at Collier’s Beach.
This was the 13th staging of the annual event and expectations for attendance were high because entry was free.
Shane Edwards, managing director of Two Frenzied, is the founder of this event. He said: “Overall it was a success. Everything went smoothly and thanks to Mike Young, international race marshall for the event, and the race marshall team consisting of Don Patrick, Vincent Ramgeet, Miss Lillian, Melissa Smith and Tanya Ramgeet for marshalling an excellent race and ensuring that it was safe and fair for all participants.
“I’m always pleased with the production of the event because it is my passion to keep this event going in East End,” he added. “However, this year was not the first year it was free entry. We began in 2000 with a free event and started charging the gate fee in 2005 and in 2009 we tried the free entrance again, but the overheads cost outweighed the benefits.
“I will be happy to have a free entrance event going forward if sponsorship is forthcoming and sufficient to maintain the event costs.”
The Caymanian Compass was one of the sponsors and the main ones were Flowers Bottled Water, The Ministry of Tourism, Ministry of Sports, Flava Magazine, What’s Hot, Morritt’s Resort and Cayman Airways.
“It is a huge financial outlay to brand and produce the event at the this level and this cost can only be maintained by sponsorship assistance,” Edwards said. “The event is well covered and I hope that more sponsors would consider sponsoring the event next year or in future years.”
For Edwards, the highlight was seeing the pro class races with an excellent performance from Taylor Foster, who won the Nayaman Award.
“Also, it was great to see so much great fish tea chefs participate in harmony,” he said. “The people loved the fish tea and enjoyed the great view from Collier’s Public Beach of the races.”
“This is one of the best beach views in the Cayman Islands and I’m thankful to get the approval of Recreation Parks and Cemetery office to use it for my event. It’s absolutely fabulous,” he added.
Edwards said everyone seemed to think it was a great and positive event. “And they all had a great time. They totally love the venue. Also many thanks to all the people who came out to support the fish tea cook off and showed us so much love. It was great to see you in East End. We look forward to seeing you again at next year’s event.”