Page 1














































d re we o p





l gg


o lo





For sales and queries contact Owen 494.7788 x103 | facebook: BVI NEWBIE

THE CREW Copy Production Owen Waters, David Blacklock & Traci O'Dea Advertising Production Colin Rathbun, Nick Cunha & Richard George Advertising Sales Owen Waters :: Graphic Design Richard George & Nick Cunha Executive Producer Colin Rathbun, aLookingGlass Publishing For additional information contact Nick Cunha or Colin Rathbun at aLookingGlass or visit aLookingGlass #7 Road Reef Plaza, P.O. Box 3895 Sea Cows Bay, Tortola, British Virgin Islands t 284.494.7788 f 284.494.8777 |

letter from the editor Welcome to Yacht Guide's May issue. With summer around the corner, things traditionally start to lighten a little bit on the season as the weather heats up. In this issue, our editor David delves deep into the roots of sailing and advice, as an instructor that’s all David will tell you—it’s simple and good advice. Over the next couple months, we explore our traditional annual issues of diving and alternative sports—activities that spill off from enjoying sailing out here. In this issue, at almost the end of racing season, we dedicate our cover to one of the season’s most successful boats, LIME, which happens to be skippered by our skipper, Colin Rathbun. Hats off all around. Another source of pride for us is our involvement as the production team for the second edition of the BVI Marine Awareness Guide, which will be out this month. Donations from local photographers and generous sponsors made the Guide something to be proud of and a reference for generations. We hope you will savour a copy. Learn in this issue what to do if you spot one of the lionfish that have invaded BVI waters. Also catch us online at Last month, a friend and pillar of the sailing community, Guy Eldridge, passed away whilst racing in St Thomas. I met Guy like many others, talking about sailing. From joining him on Luxury Girl to him putting me forward at the Yacht Club, our talks were of going hard on the water and giving back to the community to keep it all going. He was a good man and will be remembered in many circles, a true journeyman.

On the Cover: LIME at Spring Regatta Cover photo by Todd VanSickle, courtesy of BVI Spring Regatta.

Sail fast, like you mean it.

Correction: Last month's cover photo was also by Todd VanSickle, courtesy of BVI Spring Regatta.

Owen Waters

aLookingGlass Ltd., publisher of BVI Yacht Guide, assumes no responsibility for the accuracy of the content placed in its publications. For the avoidance of doubt, aLookingGlass gives no warranty or guarantee in regards to any information placed in its publications. BVI Yacht Guide and its contents are the intellectual property of aLookingGlass Ltd. Neither this magazine nor any part of it may be reproduced without written permission from aLookingGlass Ltd.



Owen Waters

Managing Editor Owen Waters ::



“Your service was superb… from my first call to book a charter to our last contact when we headed home from the marina.” A satisfied BVI Yacht Charters guest

BVI YACHT CHARTERS BVI Yacht Charters is the first port of call for all yacht charters and sales in the BVI. Whether you are looking to charter or to buy, looking for Bareboat or Crewed yachts, a Catamaran or a Monohull, a week or just a few days, our professional team is on hand to make it work, your way.

Tailored and Personal Service Yacht Brokerage service available Beneteau Fractional Programmes Monohulls from 31’ to 52’ Catamarans from 36’ to 47’ 24 Hour Emergency Call Out

T: +1 888 615 4006 or +1 284 494 4289 or E:



contents Skipper’s Tips: Be Nice to Your Boat Our skipper tries to see charter boats through the eyes of the owners who, like proud parents, think their baby is the most precious on the planet.


Provisioning: The Tasty Effects of Nutmeg Nutmeg is known for its mind-altering effects, but just the right amount sprinkled on a Caribbean cocktail or in warm, buttery scones can be intoxicating to the tastebuds.


Royal BVI Yacht Club Loses its Captain of Sailing 9 Guy Eldridge used his passion for sailing to improve regatta culture in the BVI and to introduce the sport to new recruits.


Shoreside Review: D' Best Cup 10 The coffee and food at D' Best Cup offers a great way to start the day or an extra boost in the afternoon. Reef Check: What To Do If You Spot a Lioinfish 11 Non-native, Indo-Pacific lionfish have arrived in the BVI. Luckily, the Department of Conservation & Fisheries has a plan. Learn what you can do if you spot one of these slow-moving but venomous creatures. Regatta Season Wrap-up With the IC24 LIME 12 Colin Rathbun and his crew share some of the sailing strategies that keep them returning to the podium.


Yard Talk: DNA Dinghy Theft Protection 14 A new type of scannable, barely detectable identification system is available to protect and recover BVI valuables, including the favourite target of BVI thieves—dinghies. EDGE: Cruising Cloth 16 Sail cloth has evolved from a simple piece of canvas to BMW Oracle V's hard, carbon fibre wing sail, and the technology continues to develop. BVI Yachting D irectory 17 Look here for the most up-to-date yacht charter and broker listings. It's a great place to start if you're looking to buy or charter a yacht in the BVI.

14 6




Be Nice to Your Boat by David Blacklock

Living as we do, surrounded by boats of all types from the gorgeous to the grotesque, it's easy to forget how precious each boat is to its owner. Every charter boat, identical though it might seem to its siblings, has a special place in somebody's heart—even if that somebody is a corporation. I know this because I recently spent a few days helping out on the dock at a charter company. Watching the look on the face of an owner contemplating their boat was an education. “That flag halyard shouldn't be rigged like that,” one owner said. “It needs to be secured to a cleat, not tied to the shrouds.” Jeez mate, thought I, you have to get a life. The scratches on the dining table. A loose hinge on a bathroom cabinet. Why was the deck showerhead cracked? All these issues made me want to thump somebody on the head with a winch handle. It's a flippin' charter yacht, I wanted to yell. You're lucky it's still floating. Do you know what happens to your pride and joy when strangers take it for a sail? Come to think of it, you're probably better not knowing. But this experience did renew my respect for even the humblest 32-footer bobbing forlornly amongst the 50-somethings. It's

someone's baby, I thought. Which is probably why I ended up on my knees trying to scrub an oil stain (or was that blood) out of the cabin sole. And tucking some torn piece of curtain out of the way. Seeing the boats with fresh eyes gave me a new perspective. Perhaps for the next few weeks I'll be nicer to the little beasts. It's not their fault. Imagine being popped out of a mould at the factory and being told, “You're off down the Caribbean mate,” when you were hoping for a lake in Minnesota with heated indoor storage for the winter and two weekends a month active duty when they finally do drop you in the (fresh) water. Because when you're out sailing, no matter how humble the yacht, when the wind's piping up and the sails are set just right, there are moments of perfection that you seldom reach elsewhere in life. Moments to be savoured. And you can't reach those moments without the boat. Treat her right. YG

BVI YAcHt GUIDe Is onLIne! >> >> >> >>

Read current and archived content at Become a fan on Follow us on Print out our latest | ALOOKINGGLASS PUBLISHING BVI YACHT GUIDE MAY 2010



by Susie Younkle

The Tasty Effects of Nutmeg

Scones with marmalade.

During a recent visit to my favourite spice store in the States, the employee at the checkout was recounting her tour of the company’s distribution facility. She proudly told me that the spices in the shop were so fresh because the company did all of its own grinding and shipped spices to its stores frequently, in small batches. The one exception was nutmeg. “Why not nutmeg?” I asked. She said that ground nutmeg could cause “intoxicating” effects and that the grinding of this particular spice was outsourced to a special facility. Hmm… I always thought that nutmeg was sprinkled on top of something intoxicating—such as a cocktail—and had never known nutmeg as anything but an excellent spice for baking and for garnishing fruity drinks. Was it really possible that one’s mind could be altered by nutmeg?

My culinary curiosity got the best of me and I set out to research this bizarre topic. I learned there is truth to what the lady in the spice shop said. There are people who seem to use nutmeg as a recreational drug, ingesting massive quantities of it – such as 20 ground nutmegs. (Keep in mind that about 1/5 of a ground nutmeg is sufficient for an entire cake.) In high quantities, nutmeg can have lengthy hallucinogenic effects, but these mind-altering sensations are typically accompanied by some nasty sickness. I once saw the effect on someone who ingested a single teaspoon of ground cinnamon on a dare, and it was not a pretty sight. I can only begin to imagine the unpleasantness of ingesting large quantities of nutmeg, so definitely use nutmeg as a culinary flavouring only. Nutmeg is grown primarily in Indonesia and the West Indies, notably Grenada. So important is nutmeg in Grenada that the spice is featured on the Grenadian flag. A nutmeg is brown and about the size of an olive. Covering the nut is a lacy red spice called mace, which has a mild nutmeg taste. Nutmeg appears in cream sauces and as a spice added to vegetables, but is used most commonly in pies, cakes, pastries and eggnog. Of course, for those of us in the BVI, no rum punch, painkiller or bushwacker would be acceptable without a dash of fresh nutmeg on top of the drink. Buy whole nutmegs and grate the spice yourself. Since ground nutmeg loses its flavour quickly, there is simply no comparison between freshly ground nutmeg and the little containers of powdered nutmeg at the supermarket. Though I am, for the most part, a minimalist in terms of kitchen utensils on boats, a spice grater is indispensable for 8

nutmeg. Opt for a Microplane brand grater, available in the BVI at House at Wickham’s Cay II. Then have some fun with your new kitchen gadget and whip up a batch of nutmeg scones or some nutmeg-topped fruity drinks.

Sponsored by

Nutmeg Scones A traditional English tea-time treat with a hint of island spice. • • • • • • • • • • •

2 C flour 1/3 C brown sugar 2 tsp baking powder 1 1/2 tsp freshly grated whole nutmeg 1/2 tsp baking soda 1/2 tsp salt 6 Tbl chilled unsalted butter, cut into ½ inch pieces 1 C light sour cream 1 tsp vanilla extract 1 egg white, beaten (for glaze) 1 Tbl sugar + 1/2 tsp grated nutmeg

Preheat oven to 425°F. Grease a baking sheet. Combine flour, brown sugar, baking powder, freshly grated nutmeg, baking soda and salt in a bowl, stirring well. Cut in butter with a pastry blender or two knives until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add sour cream and vanilla, stirring just until combined. Transfer dough to a lightly floured surface and pat dough into an 8-inch circle. Brush with egg white then sprinkle with remaining sugar and nutmeg. Cut circle into 10 wedges, then put wedges on prepared baking sheet. Bake scones until tops are golden, about 20 minutes. Serve with jam. Note: Recipe adapted from YG


Riteway Food Markets provisioning service offers a number of services to help your visit to the BritishVirgin Islands be a fuss-free, enjoyable experience. Time is of the essence for you and our 20 plus years' experience in provisioning has enabled us to tailor our services to suit the needs of all concerned by providing a wide selection of choice foods, beverages, liquor and dry products. So, whether it is your private getaway schooner, or a Super Mega yacht, each order, no matter how large or small, is given the same amount of detailed attention and delivered directly to you. After all, it's the Riteway way of doing business!

by Traci O'Dea

Royal BVI Yacht Club Loses Its Captain of Sailing Guy Eldridge (centre) and his Luxury Girl crew on the podium at the St Croix Hospice Regatta. Photo courtesy of Rob Jones.

A crowd of sailors, families and spectators stood in silence at the St Thomas Yacht Club as Chris Haycraft and Sharn Downing exchanged a faded BVI flag for a fresh one in honour of BVI sailor Guy Eldridge the day after he had a fatal accident at the Rolex Regatta. Eldridge’s Luxury Girl crewmates and other attendees watched the new flag rise to half mast then a shout of “Three cheers for Guy Eldridge” was heard, and the crowd saluted the Royal British Virgin Islands Yacht Club’s Captain of Sailing with their cups raised.

so I asked him if he would become Captain of Sailing, and he Guy was known for encouraging all to sail, said yes.” Guy’s enthusiasm for the sport and his fresh attitude regardless of their skill level or age. Former Yacht attracted new boats; additionally, “boats that hadn’t raced for Club Commodore Clair Burke recounted, “When I years were suddenly coming back out again,” Clair said. first came to the BVI [eleven years ago], I took up “He always put an aspect of fun to it,” said Chris. “Instead Laser sailing, and I met Guy. He was a Laser sailor, of just your normal, serious racing, he would include other and he was trying to get more and more people things in each day of sailing—swimming races, beach into dinghy racing. In fact, it didn’t matter what it barbecues—making more of a regatta scene.” An example was, he tried to get everyone involved in sailing.” of this was a simple alteration in course for the Halyard Chris Watters, former coach of the BVI Sailing Team, Challenge. Guy changed it from racing in the Channel to a praised Guy as a “keen ambassador for the sport of sailing” race to Dead Man’s Bay at Peter Island. Participants took a and added that “he was always the first person I would ask if someone I knew wanted to sail in a regatta or at an event. I’d swim break then raced back to the Yacht Club. “The start line for the race back was at Peter Island, and all these see if he had room on Luxury Girl.” charter boats at Peter Island were watching. It was a simple One of Guy’s aims was to break down the intimidation factor that is often associated with the sport. He would recruit sailors from Conyers Dill & "He brought the social aspect into sailing at the BVI Pearman, the law firm where he was a partner, Yacht Club, and that’s what brings people out." to get on the water for the first time. “He’d have training sessions in the boardroom after change that got a lot more people involved,” said Clair. work—downwind sailing techniques—things that people Under guy’s leadership, Chris said, attendance at RBVIYC never realized,” said Clair. “For the Pizza Pursuit race, he events almost doubled. “He brought the social aspect into was racing Luxury Girl, but he chartered a boat and hired a sailing at the BVI Yacht Club, and that’s what brings people captain and got all his staff members out for the day.” But out,” Chris said. “Even if you had a bad day of sailing, you still she added that he did everything in such an unassuming had a fun event.” manner that people rarely realized how much he did. “It’s Guy Eldridge singlehandedly affected the lives of many a huge void, and it will be a long time before—if it’s ever— people in the BVI by introducing them to sailing, making it filled again. He will be hugely missed once people start to more fun and approachable, and, in many of them, invoking realize all he did,” Clair said. the same passion that he had for the sport. YG Clair recalled her interactions with Guy at the BVI Yacht Club. “When I was Commodore, he said that races had gone down, | ALOOKINGGLASS PUBLISHING BVI YACHT GUIDE MAY 2010


Sip D' Best Cup while watching the activity in Trellis Bay. Photos by Owen Waters

Shoreside Review D’ Best Cup

by Owen Waters

that is how it started, a simple need created Could be, I think as I sip coffee out of a desire for a good cup, and Phillip with Phillip Fenty, one of the proud then researched the coffee industry to make owners of the coffee shops in Road sure the venture would work. Town and Trellis Bay. Whenever D’Best Cup now has three locations: I grab a coffee in Road Town, it Road Town, West End and Trellis Bay.Trellis always takes me a while to figure serves breakfast and lunch. Patrons can call out which flavour I want, and no their orders in and hang out most of the day, matter what I ultimately decide, it enjoying the lime or checking out the rest goes down as the right choice. of Trellis. With complete bar, delicious food Thing is, I haven’t really studied it before, and Phillip’s chatter, I can see why the place and I have been drinking a ton of coffee lately—gallons of different blends and beans. is popular. Also, the nibbles. I ate all the mini chocolate doughnuts—I mean they That doesn’t make me a coffee expert; it makes me someone who likes a good cup of java. At ...some boaters order six different Trellis, Phillip and I tuck into the breakfast roll—it’s light types of's part of their BVI and has everything I would routine, like a favourite painkiller... expect for breakfast, all on a light, toasted roll.The breeze are mini, so there shouldn’t be a problem is up as I sip the mocchaccino, probably my eating half a dozen. Nothing wrong with favourite, and this is a damn good cup of a little indulgence for breakfast. YG coffee or the experience of it. Whilst I am there, some boaters orders six different types of coffee and tell me it’s part of their BVI routine, like a favourite painkiller, these guys need D’ Best Cup fix before they leave Trellis. Why not? Phillip tells me that consistency is the key. He uses one bean from one coffee house from Chicago, and his friend who is a true coffee expert put him onto it. He has been in the BVI for over thirty years now, and the idea for the coffee store came from his wife’s hairdressing salon. “She got so fed up Trellis Bay 284 495 0259 of making cups of coffee for customers and Road Town 284 446 2211 I was getting out of the financial sector. She West End 284 545 8015 told me that someone should open a coffee store by the salon; people love coffee.” So

A hearty breakfast.

Owner Phillip Fenty wakes up his customers.



If you see this creature, mark the spot.

Lionfish markers underwater. Photo courtesy of USVI Lionfish Response Program.

Reef Check What to Do When You See a Lionfish

A dead lionfish. This one was caught in the USVI.

by Traci O'Dea

Non-native, Indo-Pacific lionfish have invaded the BVI. These voracious, venomous hunters do not have any natural predators in the BVI, and they’re known as a destructive force on other Caribbean islands and in Florida where they were accidentally introduced after an aquarium in Biscayne Bay broke during Hurricane Andrew. Luckily, the BVI was prepared for the invasion. Marine biologist Shannon Gore from the Conservation and Fisheries Department (CFD) applied for support from the UK in November, knowing that the predator’s arrival in the BVI was imminent.The grant money came through in March, about one week after the first lionfish was spotted in the BVI. At this time, the grant money is mainly being used to raise awareness and buy the equipment needed to successfully capture the fish. Shannon’s hope is that everyone in the BVI knows what a lionfish looks like and knows what to do if they spot one. On the popular cruising bulletin board, members recently debated how to respond to the BVI lionfish infestation—some encouraged netting, others killing and cooking them, but no one seemed to know the official word from the BVI government concerning this creature. Cruisers want to protect the BVI waters they love so much, so they are happy to help wipe out the lionfish,

but they also respect BVI laws and are very aware of the fishing restrictions in the BVI. Shannon is following the lead of St Croix, an island that has already had several lionfish sightings, and employing an effective underwater marking system for when snorkelers, swimmers or divers spot a lionfish.The markers are made from a ¾” washer, about four feet of survey tape and a wine cork. Shannon’s goal is for every Buoyancy Control Device (BCD) and snorkelling lifejacket to have one of the lionfish markers along with a plastic card with pictures of the lionfish on it. If divers spot a lionfish in BVI waters, they first need to “stop and relax,” Shannon said. “Don’t scare the fish. It’s not going to attack you. If you scare the fish, we’ll never find it.” Divers should not try to kill or capture the fish, either. “If an untrained person tries to catch it and doesn’t mark it then loses it...think of how many more that one fish can produce,” she said. Rather, divers should place one of the markers on a spot on the sea floor or reef as close to the lionfish as possible. The washer keeps the marker in its spot while the cork extends the survey tape so that it acts

Photo by Traci O'Dea

like an underwater flag. After the marker has been placed, the divers should notify the CFD or a local dive operator with the location of the site where the lionfish was spotted. “One of the dive operators or our department will respond within 24 hours,” Shannon said, adding that St Croix has had a 100% success rate with the markers. “Every place where a marker has been put down, they’ve caught one” The lionfish tend to be slow moving and linger in one area. In one instance, divers in St Croix went out four days after the marker was set and still recovered the fish. Some divers and snorkelers have expressed concern about the fish’s venomous spikes. Shannon again mentioned the slowness of the creature but provided instructions on what someone should do if punctured. “Heat,” she said. “Scalding water breaks down the protein.” While Shannon discourages the capturing of lionfish, I asked her what to do if someone accidentally caught one. “They should probably kill it,” she said. “Then call us and let us know where they picked it up” YG | ALOOKINGGLASS PUBLISHING BVI YACHT GUIDE MAY 2010


Regatta Season Wrap-Up with the IC24 LIME by Traci O'Dea

Team LIME works together at BVI Spring Regatta. All photos by Todd VanSickle courtesy of BVI Spring Regatta.

Outside the Fat Turtle restaurant in St Thomas’s Yacht Haven Grande, megayachts loomed, each hulking over the next. Sitting under their glow, Fred Ruebeck and I discussed a much different boat, his IC24, LIME, which had just taken first place in the Puerto Rico Heineken International Regatta and second place in the Rolex Regatta. Fred said that he bought an IC24 because “it was a boat that could go two ways—a daysailer or a racer.” He wanted to learn to race, and he wanted to race with Colin Rathbun. “I met Colin a few years ago at the [Royal BVI] Yacht Club after he’d won the 12

Nation’s Cup,” Fred said. His wife suggested that he ask Colin to captain LIME. “It’s been a great team because he brought along a great crew. We enjoy sailing together, and, thanks to Colin’s leadership, we are very disciplined,” said Fred. “He has a great sense of what needs to be done.” While winning is always Colin’s goal, he’s not overly aggressive. “He can be an aggressive driver, but he’s mostly a calm, collected, conservative driver. It’s all about consistency,” said Nick Cunha, LIME’s upwind tactician. LIME proved that consistency worked at the Puerto Rico Heineken International Regatta where they scored ten first-place results out of ten


races. “What was weird was that we kept winning and nobody was converging with us,” Nick said. “Nobody was making us do anything differently, so we kept doing the same thing—having a good start and covering. It’s much easier to cover five or six boats than fifteen. When we got ahead, it was pretty difficult for someone to pass us. It wasn’t like we sailed amazingly. It was just consistency.” At the Rolex Regatta in St Thomas, LIME was not as consistent, with a tenth place in the first race and another in the penultimate race, but they still earned second overall. “The first race was a long downwind,” Nick said. “If you get on the wrong side once or twice,

LIME in the lead.

Nick also mentioned how much he enjoyed you’ll find yourself at the back. For the first two-thirds participating in the 2009 Carlos Aguilar Match Race of that race, we were in the top three, and we tried in St Thomas. “It was the first time we’d match raced to get clear air because we were being covered by so against people other than here in the BVI,” Nick said. many boats, so we sailed outside where we should’ve “It’s a bit edgier and more exciting. Match racing is been, and boats passed us inside.” The second-tolike the drag race whereas fleet racing is more like a last race tactics were more a testimony to Colin’s horse race.” Colin concurs. “Match racing is awesome. occasional aggressive driving. “It was coming to the The unfortunate part of it is that there’s not a lot point when we thought our second was going to going on here in the BVI.” hold, so we tried to push Colin said that he hopes the envelope and started They were clearly overjoyed to be to change that fact. First, playing with Fraito [Lugo by encouraging increased on Orion, who was in first together, and it was obvious that attendance at the match place] a little bit. On our Colin values each of his crew races that already exist prestart, we decided it in the BVI. “I’d like to was going to be more of a spearhead the Pete Shiels Match Race in October. It’s match race between us and him, and we pushed him been self-umpired in the past, which is okay, but to try and four other boats over early, including ourselves. and have an event and an entry fee, you need to have Had we not been over early as well, it probably umpires, and they all love coming here, so that’s easy.” would’ve panned out more like we expected it to.” Additionally, Colin plans on honing his match racing For BVI Spring Regatta, LIME’s results were skills at Dave Perry’s sailing clinic this month. consistent again. Until the last race. “We were neck At BVI Spring Regatta, Team LIME looked happy and neck with Fraito the whole time,” Colin said. In up on the podium with their second place. They fact, LIME had more first place finishes than Lugo’s were clearly overjoyed to be together, and it was Orion. “I don’t think we ever got more than five points obvious that Colin values each of his crew. “I’ve away from each other. We went into the last race three been sailing with Nick for four or five years. We points ahead, so we had it all pretty much sewn up because he hadn’t beaten us by that much of a spread in sail really well together, and we just know each other. If I start looking around, he’s like, ‘Just focus any of the other twenty races,” said Colin. LIME stayed in and drive, Colin, drive.’” The newest member of front of Orion for most of the race. “We even put a few the team is sixteen-year-old Chris Brockbank. boats between us and him,” Colin declared. But after the “He’s got a natural balance that makes him glued first downwind leg, “there was a massive wind shift. We to the foredeck,” said Colin, “which means that ended up having to go wide of another boat into no air, you can do crazy manoeuvres and not have to and then three or four boats—what felt like a million worry about him falling off.” A past member of boats—passed us.” LIME took their lowest score of the LIME returned from Wisconsin for this year’s regatta, a six, on the last race, and Orion took second, regatta season. “Matt Younkle came back for winning them the class. “We like to race against Fraito,” Puerto Rico, Rolex and BVI. He’s a really great guy. Nick said, “because he’s at the level that we’d like to be.”

Smart, organized and a great sailor. He’ll spot a lot of issues going on.” Fred also praised the team. “I’d be nowhere without them,” he said proudly. “I’d just be another guy.” “Fred’s great crew,” Colin said, “because he’s always happy and relaxed and enjoying himself. That’s really the key.You see a lot of crews out there—and we’ve done it at times as well—you go out there, and the competition takes over too much of your fun.You gotta keep it something fun. Otherwise, it’s a job.” YG

Upcoming Races BVI Dinghy Championships 1 - 2 May Quantum Sails IC24 International Regatta 12 - 13 Jun Lowell Wheatley Anegada Pursuit Race 26 Jun Firecracker (WEYC race) 3 Jul Premier’s Cup 10 - 11 Jul Manhattan Yacht Club Trophy Race 18 Jul Back to Schools Regatta 4 - 5 Sep Open Sail to Norman Island 25 Sep Pete Sheals Match Racing 2 - 3 Oct Willy-T Virgins Cup Race 9 Oct BVI Schools Regatta 30 - 31 Oct Drakes Channel Treasure Hunt 6 Nov Round Tortola Race 20 Nov O'Neal & Mundy Commodores Cup & Prizes 18 Dec And if that's not enough, check out the forum on for more weekly beercan racing action right off the southern end of Nanny Cay. IC24s are the new fad in racing and spreading fast to the rest of the Caribbean and North America. | ALOOKINGGLASS PUBLISHING BVI YACHT GUIDE MAY 2010


Yard Talk

DNA Detection to Deter Dinghy Thieves

by David Blacklock

Hands up anyone who's had their dinghy stolen. Wow, so many! So hands up anyone who's ever said, a propos of said thefts, “Why doesn't someone do something?” News for you—aggressive action is about to be unleashed. Launched to catch the buzz of the BVI Spring Regatta, a new BVI Police initiative harnesses offthe-shelf technology in a creative way to thwart the designs of thieves who have been living quite brazenly off the charter industry. No, casual theft is not the same as Somali piratery, but it is awfully annoying when it's your dinghy that got stolen. Particularly when you are trapped aboard with a half-dozen squirmy guests and no alternative other than swimming.



The Marine Marking Initiative, as it is known, will allow operators to register their property with the Royal BVI Police who will covertly and overtly (secretly and obviously to you) mark outboard motors, dinghies, electronic gear and any other equipment the owner chooses. Utilising technologies ranging from “synthetic DNA” to Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tags to ultra-violet light sensitive inks and gels, these identifying marks will be linked to individual hull identification numbers (HINs) which comprise the basic data for vessel registration. If the police should have suspicions regarding a certain item, the RFID tag and UV markings will identify the property as belonging to a particular vessel which in turn will be associated with a charter company, or individual operator. RFID tags have the added advantage of being readable from some

distance away. If an operator chooses to sell a particular dinghy or piece of equipment, the new owner can simply pay for a new registration and all data would then point to that owner. For a cost of $65, the MMI will allow an operator to register up to 50 marks— say, 25 items. Information provided by the BVI Police identifies the equipment supplier as Selectamark Security Systems, PLC. This British company supplies an assortment of crime-prevention and detection materials, including what the company calls synthetic DNA, which is applied to objects that are likely to attract thieves. Any person handling the object will end up with some of this DNA marker adhering to his skin or to clothing and which the company claims is nearly impossible to remove. The DNA material contains microdots which are imprinted with codes indicating the registration data of the original equipment. This DNA material will glow under UV lighting and can be quickly

Selectamark's Andrew Knights shows law enforcement officers the new theft-detection technology. Photo by Traci O'Dea

officer. It is virtually impossible to remove the markings and any attempt would seriously deface and devalue the items for resale.” The announcement identifies TMM Yacht Charters as “the charter company who are leading the theft reduction initiative, Marine equipment will no longer be as valuable to the and they have already marked 50 charter yachts criminal as it will bear permanent markings which can ahead of the launch. The be easily spotted by any law enforcement officer company plans to mark other boats at their bases in Belize and St Vincent and the Grenadines Meanwhile, other charter very effective in deterring thefts in the UK. A yacht companies and marinas have already spokesperson for the BVI Police told YG that expressed their interest in joining the initiative as “this will be the first time all products have been soon as possible.” linked together in a complete holistic initiative in The partners in the initiative are The Royal the marine environment anywhere in the world. Virgin Islands Police Force (RVIPF), The British UK Police Forces...are very keen to hear about Virgin Islands Tourist Board, The Marine the initiative.” Association, The Charter Yacht Society and Crime The Police announcement quotes Reynell Stoppers BVI. Fraser, the Police Commissioner of the Royal Now, if they could only persuade some BVI Virgin Islands Police Force, as saying, “Marine parents to take responsibility for their wayward equipment will no longer be as valuable to the criminal as it will bear permanent markings which children, we might see a virtual cessation of dinghy theft altogether. YG can be easily spotted by any law enforcement identified by use of a special torch. Additionally, subscribers to this security system will be provided with signage which clearly informs potential thieves of the measures in place. The company claims that their system has proven

Technology simplified

call for support




Cruising Cloth The Evolution of Sailmaking

by David Blacklock

Photo courtesy of Quantum.

Sail technology is evolving at a rapid pace these days, driven by intense competition between sailmakers. Where just a few years ago the material of choice for all types of sailing was a polyester known largely as Dacron (its DuPont trademark) in the US, Terylene in the UK (an ICI trademark) and generically by its chemical name, polyethylene terephthalate or PET.

Sail cloth has evolved over the years.

knell for sail technology at that top level. Who knows This material, used in bottle making and where it will lead. container fabrication, also appears in film Cruising yachts have their own particular form as Mylar. One of the most ubiquitous requirements and, whilst Dacron-type sails are still polyesters, PET appears in many forms, from the sail of choice for most, performance cruising sails birthday balloons to carpeting to sailcloth. are being built of more exotic materials which have Its enormous versatility has also made it something of a commodity and it is no longer been developed in the racing environment and have extended their reach. protected by patent, hence its diminished The primary considerations in any sail are attractiveness to the sailmaker. resistance to stretching, resistance to abrasion or Demand requires it, of course, for everyday use tearing, and resistance to UV light, which will degrade on boats ranging from Optimists to offshore cruising the fibers. One of the first materials to replace yachts—there's nothing quite as user-friendly as Dacron for sailing applications was Kevlar which Dacron. A sailor can sew his own repairs, tape up has, since the 1970s, been a byword for strength a tear, even cut and shape his own sails if need be. and resistance to tearing—it's the material bulletThe downside, as most sailors know too well, is its proof vests are comprised of. It is susceptible to tendency to stretch, resulting in a baggy blown-out UV damage, however, and must be handled extra sail that creates excessive heel and weather helm but carefully as it loses strength when folded roughly will, of course, keep on pulling a boat along until it or when it flexes and flogs excessively. These latter finally rips into shreds, like a favourite pair of jeans. qualities make Kevlar less than ideal for cruising Racing requires a sail that won't stretch and but excellent for racing, where there are plenty of that will trim flat and maintain its shape over time. crew to tend to the sails. Twaron is a polymer very The search for such a material has led sailmakers similar to Kevlar in composition, though with better down some interesting paths and has resulted a UV resistance. Another material is Vectran which is blizzard of patents, trademarks and copyrights that a liquid crystal polymer, a kind of polyester, which is are the bread and butter of corporate marketing. well suited for the hard hauling of cruising. It's almost Nothing suits a sailmaker better than to offer an as strong as Kevlar but has better UV and abrasion exclusive fabric or material. Often, the first to exploit a technology has a few years jump on the competition The primary considerations in any sail are resistance and can bank profits while the competition has to fight on to stretching, resistance to abrasion or tearing, and price and service. That's business resistance to UV light, which will degrade the fibers. anywhere, of course, but sailing is a luxury business really—an resistance. Perhaps the newest formulation is carbon owner facing budget restrictions can always keep his fiber which is almost impervious to UV light and sails another season or two. These days, a lot of the sail lofts' business is in repairing and refurbishing sails extremely resistant to damage from tearing and mishandling. Carbon fiber can be formulated in many rather than selling new ones. different grades to offer various degrees of stiffness or For those who can afford it, though, this is an softness. Another material is Pentex which is a type of exciting time for sailing—new formulations and new resin-impregnated polyester which can be bonded to applications of old materials have shaken up the sheets of film, such as Mylar, for stability. sailing world. The recent America's Cup displayed an In practice, the sails that end up on cruising boats are even more advanced technology than mere sailcloth often a mixture of all these types of materials. Kevlar, when Larry Ellison's BMWOracle sported a solid for instance, can be sandwiched between sheets of wing—and won the competition. Although we won't Dacron for protection from the UV light and as a barrier be seeing a solid wing atop an IC24 any time soon, against abrasion. Quantum has a line called Fusion the AC this year did sound a kind of muffled death 16


which incorporates Kevlar and carbon fiber together for strength and resistance to degradation as well as a savings in weight. Doyle has a product they call Stratis for performance cruising, fabricated from Twaron and Vectran fibers and protected by a shell of synthetic taffeta laminate. Often a yacht might sail to a venue using Dacrontype sails and rig a high performance suit for racing. The variants are as many as there are dollars in the budget. It is fair to say, though, that the further one gets into the wild beyond, the fewer will be the variants. In the far reaches of the Pacific, in the small atolls or in the fjords of the high latitudes, it will be the good old white polyester you'll mostly see.


Clean, renewable fuel FREE with every sail! Largest loft in the BVI Full sales and service loft Convenient location New canvas and canvas repair Pick up and drop off Located near the entrance of Nanny Cay t. 284 494 1124



BVI Yachting Directory RT








Road Town

Nanny Cay

Trellis Bay

East End

Soper's Hole

Sea Cows Bay

West End

Virgin Gorda


DIVING & ANGLING Dive Tortola (RT)


MARINAS & YACHT CLUBS Nanny Cay Marina & Hotel (NC) 284-494-2512 Royal BVI Yacht Club (RT)


Manuel Reef (SCB)


REPAIRS & SUPPLIES Doyle Sailmakers BVI (RT)


Marine Depot (BVI) Inc (RT)


Quantum Sails (BVI) Ltd. (NC)

284-494-1124 (RT) 284-499-0591 est. 2007 | Sells Boats: Yes Charters Boats: No Brand(s): Non-Specific Year Make: Non-Specific Type(s): Non-Specific Number of brokers: 3 (RT) 284-494-6017 Representing the finest selection of luxury crewed charter yachts in the BVI.

RESTAURANTS & PUBS Pisces Restaurant (SH)


Jolly Roger (WE)


Want to see your business listed? Choose either a single line or 50-word description with logo, and send your request to (EE) 284-495-1979 est. 1993 | Fleet size: 10 Sells boats: No Charters Boats: Yes Brand(s): Fontaine Pajot, Lagoon, Leopards, Island Spirit, Robertson & Caine, Privilege, Voyages Year Make: 1997-2005 Type(s): Catamarans

BVI Yacht Charters (NC)


Charterport (RT)

284-494-7955 (RT) 284-494-4868 est. 1986 | Fleet size: 46 Sells Boats: Yes Charters Boats: Yes Brand(s): Beneteau, Jeanneau, Lagoon, Leopard, Norseman, Island Spirit, Athena, Hunter Year Make: 1996-2004 Type(s): Sailboat Cats and Monohulls

Double D Charters (VG)


Footloose (RT)

284-494-0528 (NC) 284-494-8787 est. 1998 | Fleet size: 36 Sells Boats: Yes Charters Boats: Yes Brand(s): Bavaria, Jeanneu, Beneteau, Fontaine Pajot, Lagoon Year Make: 2002-2009 Type(s): Sailboat Cats and Monohulls (TB) 284-494-6300 est. 1991 | Fleet size: 6 Sells Boats: No Charters Boats: Yes Brand(s): Peter Spronk, Sea Ray, Privilege, Beneteau Year Make: 1976-2006 Type(s): Sail & Power Cats & Monohulls (EE) 284-495-1931 est. 1993 | Fleet size: 16 Sells Boats: Yes Charters Boats: Yes Year Make: 1993 – 2006 Brand(s): Beneteau, Jeanneau, Fountaine Pajot power and sail, Lagoon Type(s): Sail & Power Cats and Monohulls

Racing in Paradise (NC)


Sail Bravura (RT)


Southern Trades (RT)


Sunsail (EE)


The Moorings (RT)




Tortola Yacht Sales (RT)



BVI Yacht Guide May 2010  

BVI Yacht Guide May 2010

BVI Yacht Guide May 2010  

BVI Yacht Guide May 2010