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Antigua Sailing Week - English Harbour Rum Race

With full blown tradewinds piping up to 20 knots in the gusts, the 50th edition of Antigua Sailing Week got off to a lively start for English Harbour Rum Race Day 1.

Winning skippers on the first day of Antigua Sailing Week included Sir Richard Matthews taking part in his 37th Antigua Sailing Week and 18 year old Jules Mitchell who has never skippered at the regatta before.

Blasting through the swell, Sir Peter Harrison's British Farr 115, Sojana was a magnificent sight and corrected out to win CSA 1 by a comfortable margin.

British Swan 82, Stay Calm, skippered by Lloyd Kyte was second, with Jean-Paul Riviere's French Finot Conq 100, Nomad IV in third place.

Today's closest victory was in CSA 8. After CSA time correction, Tanner Jones' J/30, Caribbean Alliance Insurance was the winner by just 21 seconds from Steve Carson's Dehler 30, Hightide.

CSA 4 - Click image for a larger image

CSA 4 features a dozen well sailed teams, many of which have been featuring on the podium at Caribbean regattas throughout the season.

Sergio Sagramoso's Puerto Rican Melges 32, Lazy Dog scored a second today with Bernie Evan Wong's Antigua RP37, Taz taking third. But today's victor was Sir Richard Matthews' Humphreys 39, Oystercatcher XXXI.

CSA 5 was incredibly competitive with the top eight boats separated by under 10 minutes after time correction.

Ross Applebey's Oyster 48, Scarlet Oyster continues to impress after winning yesterday's Peters & May Round Antigua Race: the British team started their Antigua Sailing Week campaign with a victory.

Jonty Layfield's Swan 48, Sleeper X was second, while Quokka 8, sailed by Performance Yacht Racing was third.

In CSA 3, Clint Brooks' Bajan TP52, Conviction was fully launched, especially downwind, planing at a top speed of 20 knots to slide through the line after a crazy last leg, blasting down the south side of the island to take line honours and the race win after time correction.

Adrian Lee's Irish Cookson 50, Lee Overlay Partners was always a threat and after time correction finished just over a minute behind Conviction.

Sir Richard Matthews' Humphreys 39, Oystercatcher XXXI - Click image for a larger image

In CSA 6, Fritz Bus' Melges 24, Island Waterworld was the first yacht to finish, but the St. Maarten team was chased all the way by the young team from the National Sailing Academy, racing the Cork 1720 Spirit.

After time correction, the young Antiguans won the race. Island Waterworld was second with Peter Lewis' Bajan J/105, Whistler in third.

Antigua Yacht Club was the venue for the English Harbour Rum daily prize giving with plenty of Antigua Sailing Week's favourite rum to savour. After a full-on day of racing in paradise, over a 1,000 sailors packed the Antigua Yacht Club lawn for the daily prize giving.

Live music was provided by 1761 and they don't play to empty dance floors, so the party will last well into the night.

Click image for a larger image

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