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RACING: Community Boating Center students on the rail of the sailboat “Good News” that competed in the East Greenwich Yacht Club Annual Regatta held July 16. Proceeds from the regatta benefited the CBC.

By John Howell


Sailors always prefer being on the water.

That was the case on July 16 when more than 50 boats competed in the East Greenwich Yacht Club Annual Regatta. Between skippers and crews, more than 240 people were on the water in a pursuit race where the slower boats start first and, if all things are equal, everyone arrives at the finish line simultaneously. Of course, that doesn’t happen

There were those who finished first in their divisions.

But the sailors who showed up at the yacht club on a recent Tuesday evening not only chose to be on solid ground but figuratively were on the finish line.

The occasion was a celebration of sailing and the presentation of the $7,500 the regatta raised to the Community Boating Center of Providence. Founded in 1994, the center provides boating experiences and sailing instruction to 2,000 city youths ages 8 to 15 who would otherwise not have access to the bay

“The mission of the East Greenwich Yacht Club centers on the concept of promoting the sport of yachting, environmental stewardship, sportsmanship, camaraderie and responsible seamanship. Through this donation to Providence Community Boating, an organization with whom we are proud to partner, we hope to assist with thesailing community’s efforts to provide access to the bay’s natural gifts to all Rhode Islanders,” EGYC Commodore Thomas Assad told the assembly.

CBC Executive Director John O’Flaherty, who grew up sailing at the yacht club, spoke of the program’s impact and the importance of community support. He also thanked CBC board member Claude Bergeron, who arranged for CBC student sailors to crew aboard one of the racing yachts. Students sailing included Juan Sanchez-Ayesta, Om Knadka, Niya Plynton and Joseph Santa Cruz. They were accompanied by CBC instructor Chris Mannka

Regatta sailors were treated to a picture-perfect day of racing, including a solid southwesterly wind that produced several close finishes among the four classes of boats racing. Class A was won by Thomas D’Albora on Coconut. Class B was won by Matthew Coughlin in his J24, USA 4116. Coughlin was also the winner of the John Lavin Memorial Trophy for “First J/Boat” to complete the racecourse. Class C was won by Ken Thorson in Thora. The Family Racing Class was won by Mike Reynolds in Noah’s Arc. The J22 one-design class was won by Neil McDermott in Kona. The big winner of the day was Ken Thorson as Thora was victorious in the largest, most competitive racing class. Thorson was the eighth recipient of the “Udo Schoff Trophy” for top performance of the day.

Community Boating Center (CBC) is a non-profit, 501c3 recreational organization offering all members of the community an opportunity to sail. Located in India Point Park, CBC provides outreach, sailing lessons and affordable access to the Providence waterfront. Gifts of cash or property to CBC may be treated as charitable donations for Federal Tax purposes.

For additional information contact:

John O'Flaherty
Executive Director
Community Boating Center
tel: 401.454.SAIL (7245)