By KATHY JOHNSON
It was the perfect week weather-wise for the competitors in the 2019 International Albacore Championship sailing regatta hosted by the Shelburne Harbour Yacht Club (SHYC).
“Boy oh boy, everybody was pretty happy with the weather,” said Henry Pedro, lead organizer for the event in an interview. “The sailing weather was terrific and couldn’t have been better.”
Forty-seven teams from Great Britain, the U.S.A and Canada competed in the week long event that ran from Aug. 24 to 30. Great Britain sailors Neville Herbert and Mark Fowler aboard You Can Call Me AL took top spot in the regatta.
Shelburne Harbour Yacht Club’s Guy Tipton and Matthew King posted a seventh place finish overall.
Pedro said overall everything went great for the regatta.
“It went off without a hitch,” he said. “There was not a single complaint from the competitors. Many of them were saying it was one of the best events they ever attended.
"We tried very, very hard to make it that way and to make it look like we knew what we were doing,” said Pedro laughing, “and I think they really, really appreciated it.”
Some 67 volunteers, including a lot of youth, stepped up to the plate to help during the week, said Pedro, as did the community.
“I think the community really stepped up to the event. Everyone was very enthusiastic and happy to see a bunch of visitors to the town and things going on in the town. It was great to see the re-enactors come out and put on their military display. The competitors certainly enjoyed that. It was well run all around."
Pedro, who also competed, said from his point of view, “The quality of the racing was one of the best. I’ve been to eight different world championships and the one we put on here ranks right up at the top.”
Race officials and judges came from all over Canada to officiate the event including Edmonton, Annapolis Royal, Halifax and Ontario. Pedro said the race committee put on the "best display of officiating" he'd ever seen.
For the rest of this season, the SHYC will continue to hold their weekly race series and will be turning their thoughts to next summer and begin planning for the East Coast Albacore Championships, traditionally held at the end of August.