Over 30 youth sailors attended the launch of Antigua Sailing Week (ASW) 2022 AXXESS MARINE Youth to Keelboat (Y2K) program, held at the National Sailing Academy on Monday, April 25.
Jamie Torres, ASW Race Manager welcomed them with a few words of encouragement: “all of you can become great sailors, however, it begins with you having the best attitude willing to learn and listen, whilst having a great time and enjoying yourself.”
These sentiments were echoed by Y2K Alumni including Jules Mitchell, now an ASW participant, who also advised the candidates to: “be in tune with what’s happening around you and ask questions and be fully committed.”
Alesea Charles, recently returned from her first stint on Tracy Edwards Maiden spoke of her journey from dinghy sailor to fully fledged race crew member: “I started like most of you, sailing dinghies and found that everything I learnt could be transferred to the bigger boat. So, you are ready and you must show the crew that this is something you really want to do.”
Axxess Marine representative Reeva Armstrong presented 12 participants with gift bags: “It is so good to see so many of you taking this opportunity to be involved in this regatta as crew members. Axxess Marine has made English Harbour its base and we were determined to be involved in the community and the Y2K program is a perfect fit for us. We are looking forward to watching some great sailing and hearing about your adventures.”
Training sessions for the young sailors continue through this week, followed by a Race Rules Seminar before meeting their skipper at the Axxess Marine Y2K booth, which will be located at Antigua Yacht Club for the duration of ASW: “this will be manned by two coordinators, Jermaine Lewis, and Lorraine Mitchell, who will be the main contacts for our young sailors. It will also be a meeting and debrief area after each race,” explained Alison Sly-Adams, President of ASW.
The Youth to Keelboat Programme (Y2K) was launched in January 2018. The programme is aimed at giving youths who usually do not have the contacts to gain experience on keel boats, aged 16-25 years, the opportunity during Antigua Sailing Week.
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