Budget Marine once again made a major contribution to sailing by assisting in making available the seven one design Jeanneau 20’s that were used to hold the only fleet sailing in the Sint Maarten National Championships organized by the Sint Maarten Sailing Federation.
Winner was team Fiji Water with John Gifford helming with son Carson and youth coach Jimmy Gieseke. Second place went to Team Tropical Sail Loft of Ernst Looser, Bernard Sillem and Benjamin Scarabelli. Third place went to Team Short Support with Simon Manley, Luc Knol and Kim Frye.
Some memorable moments in the event included, the three Kids at Sea teams finishing first, second and third, in one race. The up and coming Soons brothers leading a race. A very interesting gate on a short course which resulted in what initially appeared as "gambles" changing the results in many cases. Incredible collaboration putting seven boats, one dock and a startboat away in record time.
The presence of Olympic judge David de Vries on the water is likely to have made a very big difference to the many disputes that inevitably arose on the very short course and very short windward leg. Due to the weather report having predicted very low wind the race officer Nettie Valk kept the courses very short to limit the risk of running out of time. As it turned out the wind did not drop and the event finished early.
Budget Marine continues to support grass root sailing on the local level on the assumption that such events are what drives the skill development for what often become some of the great sailors starting their careers in the Caribbean islands.
Simsaf Sailor of the Year Awards
The prize giving of the Nationals also featured the Sailor of the Year in the adult and youth divisions. In the youth division the award went to Zac Sabaroche, a youth sailor with the SMYC who has been consistently and diligently gaining experience in many boat types including keel boats and his dedication and perseverance was the basis of his receiving this award according to the President, Garth Steyn.
In the adult division the award went to Andrea Scarabelli, a very accomplished racing sailor whose accomplishments in racing are complemented by a strong passion to share technical information and support all sailors including youth.