Today is the last day of the Heineken Regatta 2015 and our team is in the groove and prepared to make things go smoothly. Mark came aboard my boat at 7AM and we had some fresh cappuccino from my coffee machine rather than the somewhat diluted and bitter brew served ashore. After we'd tanked up on caffeine we proceeded to the start boat. While I'd gotten a good night's sleep (except for the loud music at 3AM), Lotte (Wietske's daughter) had been out all night and had only managed 2 hours of sleep - which probably made for a very long day for her!
We only had one set of starts to do but the constant wind shifts made for a difficult choice for Nancy. To exacerbate the wind problem some of the starts got hit with short-lived wind shifts that had them tacking on the start line to get an optimal course line. The competitors were also used to their boats, the crew and the conditions and this made for some closer starts than the days before and we had a number of boats that crossed the line early and were required to return to the line as a penalty. Not all of them returned, which means that their whole race day was ruined since their scores are not counted.
After we'd started all of our boats on their last racing journey, we motored back and anchored about 200 yards behind and to the side of the finish boat so that we could watch the racers come through the line. This was great entertainment and a lot of fun, marred only by one competitor mistaking us for the finish boat (despite the fact that we were not flying a blue flag) and they did not pass between the finish boat and the finish mark; as they passed and asked why they didn't get a whistle! After being informed that we were not the finish boat, they circled and weaved through the other finishers to go back through the correct line. As the passed a second time we were treated to hysterical screams by an irate woman (I won't call her a lady) aboard that racer and I trust that she just got carried away by the heat of the moment rather than being like that at other times.
Once we'd gotten the committee boat turned back into a normal charter catamaran by removing all of our race appendages we were finished for the day. Mark and I got some of the remaining items and I now have more Coca-Cola in my fridge than I've drunk in the past 10 years so I am hoping that whatever guests I get aboard will help me reduce this ballast. Tomorrow Mark and I will return the charter boat to Sunsail base in Oyster Pond and that will be the end of the Heineken Regatta for us. Oh, wait - I just remembered that there will be a volunteer party sometime as well :)
I went aboard Zanshin in the afternoon to work on the pictures and figure out what I was going to do with my battery bank, and at 19:00 I flagged down a water taxi and went to the latter half of the prize giving at Kim Sha beach. The stage seems to get bigger every year and the sound system probably drew as much power as an average town, the bass sounds were felt rather than merely heard. I watched part of the show and then ended up at the volunteer tent for a while and had my dinner (a couple of slices of cold, but tasty, pizza). At about 22:00 I realized that I was fading fast and wouldn't make it to the mainline act of “Kool and the Gang” so I returned to the boat and was soon fast asleep.

Sunken dry-dock in the anchorage This sunken dry-dock (half) has been a landmark for years. It does provide an excellent snorkel site, though.
(2015-03-08 07:36:47 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/5.6, 1/500s] ISO 200)
Sunken dry-dock in the anchorage
Preparing the day's flags Preparing the day's flags
(2015-03-08 09:39:32 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/5.6, 1/250s] ISO 200)
Preparing the day's flags
Checkin time for the racers We attempt to identify all of the racers during the time before the race start sequences begin.
(2015-03-08 09:40:33 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/10.0, 1/320s] ISO 200)
Checkin time for the racers
319 concentrating before the start Her concentration during the run to the line is intense.
(2015-03-08 09:42:47 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/10.0, 1/200s] ISO 200)
319 concentrating before the start
Vanille rounding the mark Vanille, a local boat, rounding the orange mark on the last day of the races.
(2015-03-08 11:04:58 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/6.3, 1/800s] ISO 200)
Vanille rounding the mark
Phaedo III flying Two out of three hulls in the air. It is hard to estimate her speed, but it must be somewhere between 20 and 30 knots!
(2015-03-08 11:57:20 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/6.3, 1/800s] ISO 200)
Phaedo III flying
Phaedo III flying 2 out of 3 hulls The speed of this record-breaker is impressive and here she shoots by us with two hulls in the air and only one in the water!
(2015-03-08 11:57:39 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/16.0, 1/500s] ISO 200)
Phaedo III flying 2 out of 3 hulls
Phaedo III past the finish line Phaedo III about to gybe after finishing the day's races.
(2015-03-08 12:01:09 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/16.0, 1/100s] ISO 200)
Phaedo III past the finish line
Phaedo III crossing the finish The sleek Phaedo III finishing the 2015 Heineken Regatta's last race.
(2015-03-08 12:00:21 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/16.0, 1/125s] ISO 200)
Phaedo III crossing the finish
Phaedo III flying a hull Phaedo III is so fast that it is easy to miss her as she shoots by.
(2015-03-08 11:57:22 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/6.3, 1/800s] ISO 200)
Phaedo III flying a hull
2 Hours sleep won't cut it :) Lotte had enjoyed the previous evening's parties, but even youth needs a bit more than 2 hours sleep, so she got it on the trampoline as we watched the finishes.
(2015-03-08 12:01:54 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/16.0, 1/400s] ISO 200)
2 Hours sleep won't cut it :)
Dutch marines volunteers We had two of these speedboats filled with Dutch Marines assisting during the races.
(2015-03-08 12:14:11 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/16.0, 1/50s] ISO 200)
Dutch marines volunteers
Dauphin Telecom trimaran finishing Dauphin Telecom trimaran finishing
(2015-03-08 12:55:40 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/18.0, 1/125s] ISO 200)
Dauphin Telecom trimaran finishing
Coco de Mer gunboat finishing Coco de Mer gunboat finishing
(2015-03-08 13:03:59 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/10.0, 1/200s] ISO 200)
Coco de Mer gunboat finishing
Monster Project crossing the finish Monster Project, a Volvo Open 70, going across the final finish line.
(2015-03-08 13:04:42 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/10.0, 1/160s] ISO 200)
Monster Project crossing the finish
Monster Project tacking Monster Project, a Volvo Open 70, tacking to the last weather mark.
(2015-03-08 13:04:52 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/10.0, 1/200s] ISO 200)
Monster Project tacking
Hamachi finishing Hamachi on the finish line during the last race of the 2015 Heineken Regatta.
(2015-03-08 13:08:28 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/18.0, 1/25s] ISO 200)
Hamachi finishing
CAY 104 on the line CAY 104 on the line
(2015-03-08 13:08:44 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/18.0, 1/125s] ISO 200)
CAY 104 on the line
CAY 104 crossing the line This large and elegant racer boasted a big crew during the races and she certainly look sleek and fast.
(2015-03-08 13:08:50 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/18.0, 1/60s] ISO 200)
CAY 104 crossing the line
Racer 183 crosses the finish line Racer 183 crosses the finish line
(2015-03-08 13:10:12 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/8.0, 1/250s] ISO 200)
Racer 183 crosses the finish line
Celestial Storm coming to the finish The bareboat racer Celestial Storm finishing.
(2015-03-08 13:10:32 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/8.0, 1/500s] ISO 200)
Celestial Storm coming to the finish
Crossing the finish line The catamaran on the left is the finish boat, flying a prominent blue flag and the other end of the line is off their stern (not in the picture).
(2015-03-08 13:23:19 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/20.0, 1/50s] ISO 200)
Crossing the finish line
Close finishes on the final day Three boats coming in close together for their last finish of the 2015 Heineken Regatta.
(2015-03-08 13:23:36 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/20.0, 1/100s] ISO 200)
Close finishes on the final day
Something Hot 304 finishing The all-girl crew of "Something Hot" coming through the finish line.
(2015-03-08 13:24:03 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/20.0, 1/80s] ISO 200)
Something Hot 304 finishing
AMCON marine Construction racer Happy racers after their finish!
(2015-03-08 13:25:54 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/20.0, 1/40s] ISO 200)
AMCON marine Construction racer
Sint Maarten Rescue standing by Luckily their services were not needed during these races, but they were there and ready to assist those in need.
(2015-03-08 13:36:33 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/20.0, 1/100s] ISO 200)
Sint Maarten Rescue standing by
Heineken spectator boat A daysail catamaran filled with Heineken spectators during the final races.
(2015-03-08 13:37:38 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/20.0, 1/160s] ISO 200)
Heineken spectator boat
Enigma VII coming in to the finish The final finish of the final day for Enigma VII
(2015-03-08 13:44:48 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/20.0, 1/40s] ISO 200)
Enigma VII coming in to the finish
Rob presenting Leo with a present Rob giving Leo a bottle of fine rum to show his apprecation of Leo's organizational talents.
(2015-03-08 14:07:27 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/20.0, 1/100s] ISO 200)
Rob presenting Leo with a present
Lining up for the 3PM bridge The contestants lining up on the last day of the Regatta in order to squeeze into the bridge opening. It looked like they were jockeying for position a good half hour before the opening, as if they were still racing.
(2015-03-08 15:00:53 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/20.0, 1/50s] ISO 200)
Lining up for the 3PM bridge
Final Prizegiving on stage The stage just keeps on getting larger and larger over the years. This year's stage had a very powerful sound system whose bass shook the beach.
(2015-03-08 19:52:42 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/20.0, 4/10s] ISO 1000)
Final Prizegiving on stage
Relaxing on the volunteer deck This year saw a "Volunteer Deck" built up on top of the registration and scoring containers which was well-stocked.
(2015-03-08 20:52:03 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/3.5, 1/60s] ISO 1000)
Relaxing on the volunteer deck
Committee boat leftovers These leftover drinks were divvied up between Mark and myself - I now have a huge amount of Coca-Cola aboard which I won't be drinking myself, but I'm hoping for thirsty guests...
(2015-03-08 15:02:21 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/20.0, 1/320s] ISO 200)
Committee boat leftovers
Cold beer for our post-race enjoyment Cooling down our sponsor's product in the morning so we can enjoy it in the afternoon.
(2015-03-08 07:44:24 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/5.6, 1/80s] ISO 200)
Cold beer for our post-race enjoyment
   
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