Impulse seizes prize
SKIPPER?Neil Burke and the BNB Impulse crew are the talk of the town in local yachting circles.
Impulse dominated an exciting weekend of ocean-racing to win the First Citizens Investment Services Regatta last Sunday and also cemented its grip on the 2012 Range Rover J-24 National Championship.
With former champion jockey Johno Jones among the crew, Impulse scored outright wins in two of eight races in the First Citizens Regatta and was consistently among the top four in five other races.
Fully Covered, skippered by Bruce Bailey, dominated the last four races, sailed on the South coast but was unable to surge ahead of the irrepressible Impulse. Fully Covered won Races 5, 6, 7 and 8 and finished second on 20 points, two behind Impulse (18).
After the first four races in Carlisle Bay on Saturday, action switched to the South coast on Sunday for the last four where spectators gathered at the Tappas Restaurant in Hastings, and along the Sir Richard Haynes Boardwalk, to witness the rivalry on the high seas.
Fifteen J-24 yachts, with Trinidadian, Vincentian and Grenadian crews among them, contested a specially chosen Olympic route and created a colourful and exciting spectacle for locals and visitors.
Following the results on Sunday, Impulse maintained its front-running position, on eight points in the overall race for the National Championship, while last year’s champion, HawkEye, is eight points behind, on 16, and unable to overtake the leaders.
Champion skipper Burke said it was a testing weekend for sailors and praised his crew for an outstanding performance and for being consistent all season.
“It was a great weekend with varying conditions. There were more waves, chop and currents on the South Coast which called for good team strategy to pull it off,” he said.
On Sunday, HawkEye was tied in third position with Esperanza (on 25 points) after each managed one victory. They were also consistently in the top half of the table. Trinidadian crews, Paddington, Undercover and Jabulani finished fifth, sixth and seventh respectively.
The First Citizens Regatta was the eighth regatta for the season organized by the J-24 Club of Barbados, and was also a high-point of the Club’s 2012 Charity Series.
Sailors and sponsors taking part in the ocean-racing events have also committed themselves to a number of charity events this year, including donating blood, feeding the homeless and working with Teen Challenge.
The ninth event on the J-24 Club’s sailing calendar for this year will be the Barbados Cruising Club Regatta on July 8. (PR/EZS)