Put 65 Sunfish racers from 10 countries and island nations at the Bitter End Yacht Club, Virgin Gorda, BVI, September 2-9, in new boats supplied by Sunfish Laser, Inc. and what do you have? Some of the best racing ever, as well as one big party, eight days in a row. Will the Bitter End Yacht Club and British Virgin Islands Yacht Club ever be the same?
We know Eduardo Cordero, of Venezuela, will not. He is now on the list of Who’s Who in the Sunfish Worlds Winner category, along with some of the champions he raced against at this 23rd World Championship, i.e., Donnie Martinborough (a three-time winner), Bruce Sutphen, and Paul-Jon Patin. With only one bullet in eight races, Eduardo edged out Malcolm Smith, of Bermuda, by four points. His excellent tactics in picking out the favored side in the six light-moderate breeze races helped. When most of us would have killed for a 9th place finish in this tough fleet, Eduardo used his 9th in the second race as a throw-out. Finishing the series with a 2-4 in 18-25 knot winds and 4-5 foot swells further proved he’s fast and darned good. And we’re not talking a 200 pound-er here.
Eduardo is a true champion, who even showed up at the awards banquet in a sports jacket. That may not sound unusual, but when “dress-up” at the BEYC means nice shorts and a clean shirt, wearing a jacket really stands out. But then Eduardo stands out. He’s fun; he’s nice; he’s handsome, and he’s the 1993 Sunfish World Champion and top Caribbean sailor. Congratulations, Eduardo.
Congratulations are due others as well. Chip Clifton, of Sarasota, FL, and son of Charlie and Cindy, was the top junior finisher with a 13th overall. The top masters finisher was Jack Willy, of New Weymouth, MA, who not only earned a 10th place overall but was an honored recipient of the “bullet club” bottle of rum. He also makes up the dart game rules as he goes along—we’re on to you, Jack. Janese Willy was the top woman finisher with a 32nd overall. Alfred Martis (better known as Yellow Man) received the Sportsmanship Award, and Eric Erickson received the traditional ‘first entry” award.
Not all of the fun took place on the race course, however. There were those Dark’n Stormy parties by the pool (thank you, David and Peggy Frith), and the lay day trip to the Baths, some on the gorgeous 46 foot motor sailer chartered by Cindy Clifton’s brother, Jim Swan. And judging from the stares we got, I doubt if anyone had ever seen a 46-footer anchor at the Baths to the tune of a bagpiper (David Frith).
One of the notable quotes overheard at the awards banquet went something like, “If this event had been held in U.S. waters, it would surely be a candidate for the St. Petersburg Yacht Club Trophy (for excellence in race management).” There were no complaints from the racers; the race management was excellent. Thank you to all those wonderful folks who helped Race Committee Co-Chairs Chuck Hunter (BVIYC), John Burnham (BEYC and Sailing World), and Chief Judge Robin Tattersall (BVIYC). A very special thank you to Cochairs Peter Haycraft (BVIYC) and John Glynn (BEYC) who spent the past year gearing up for a week of full-time activities, from the opening ceremonies to the manager’s reception to the closing ceremonies, with lots of parties and dinners in between. Class Secretary Terry Beadle did his share of running around also, coordinating the ISCA Advisory and World Council meetings held during the week.
So, that’s what the week of the ‘93 Worlds was about—a medley of friends getting together, meeting new folks, sailing in the beautiful turquoise waters and sunshine of the Caribbean, racing with the best Sunfish sailors in the world, chacha-ing until the wee hours, being with the greatest group of people anywhere, and promising to meet again at the next big event.
In addition to the race winners, special trophies were awarded to:
|First entry||Eric Erickson|
|Top Woman||Janice Mason (USA)|
|Marco Polo Award|
|Cuthbertson Trophy award||Alfred -Yellow man- Martis (BON)|