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Getting Shipshape, and Making the Podium at the BVI Spring Regatta

Sometimes it can be hard to keep your lines straight. In our May feature on the BVI Spring Regatta we got our lines tangled when we said the Cape 31 M2 was owned by Steve Rowland. In fact, Steve chartered M2 from owner Marc McMorris of San Rafael. We wanted to get that untangled and shipshape.

Sailors know it’s often difficult to keep everything organized and shipshape.
© 2023 Latitude 38 Media LLC / John

Regardless, the story went on to describe the thrills and spills of many Californians who made the trek to the BVI for the end-of-March regatta. The story by Michelle Slade starts here:

Seventy boats celebrated 50 years of fabulous sailing and island fun over five days of outstanding racing in perfect conditions at the BVI Spring Regatta and Sailing Festival, held March 27 to April 2. The BVI Spring Regatta is undoubtedly one of the most beloved regattas on the Caribbean racing circuit, and this year, the competition could not have been better — nor the conditions: warm turquoise water, temperatures in the mid-80s, and a consistent breeze in the high teens every day. Oh, and super-fun parties every night in the regatta village as well as the Nanny Cay Resort and Marina (the host sponsor) beach bar.

BVI Spring Regatta
In the midst of the BVI Spring Regatta party some yacht racing broke out.
© 2023 Ingrid Abery

This year was notable, not only because it was the 50th edition of the regatta, but because there were more than just the usual handful of West Coast competitors. Ten groups of sailors from the Western United States made it to the BVI for the regatta’s 50th anniversary celebration, including a group of women from the West Vancouver Yacht Club calling themselves the Salish Sisters: Kelly Wharton, Kerry Phillips, Kathy Parslow, Kelly Brix, Lisa Andersen, and Melanie Brisbois, who raced on Spirit of Juno, a Farr 65, in the CSA 1 division.

M2 had a great ride at the BVI Spring Regatta.
© 2023 Ingrid Albrey

“The BVI Spring Regatta and Sailing Festival delivered a sailing experience beyond expectations,” Kelly Wharton said with a big smile. “On the first practice day, the Salish Sisters stepped on our Farr 65 ride and felt like characters out of Gulliver’s Travels. The bow was a football field away, barrel-size winches loomed in the pit, and the Sequoia-wide boom floated overhead. We soon learned that the principles of sailing, whether you have an Opti or a Farr 65, are universal. The skills we had acquired from years of cruising and racing directly transferred to larger boats, albeit with some important caveats. We felt confident in our positions, nailed the starts, and ended every race with smiles and laughs.”

Calling Dr. Laura Schlessinger
Laura Schlessinger, “Dr. Laura,” and her crew aboard Pata Negra took first overall in CSA Division 1.
© 2023 Ingrid Abery

To see other West Coast sailors who made the podium you can read the full BVI Spring Regatta story in our May issue. You can find the printed magazine for your coffee or bedside table at any of these locations.

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