Several Virgin Islands junior sailors recently competed in the annual Scotiabank International Optimist Regatta in St Thomas.  

Top VI junior sailor Sam Morrell took fourth overall in the championship fleet, while 8-year-old Rayne Duff also finished fourth in the green fleet.  

The three-day event was attended by 76 sailors from around the region and the world.

Sam, 12, started strong and led the event after the first day.  He slipped to second in the overall results after nine races by the second day.

On day three, it was tougher and he posted two disappointing mid-fleet finishes which saw him slip to fourth overall.

“I was exhausted,” he said.  “We raced for four days and I think I ran out of gas.  I am going to win next year.”

Jason Putley was the next VI sailor in 12th overall, while Mollee Donovan finished in 20th.

Rayne Duff left his mark on the Green Fleet with a solid fourth place overall finish.  Rayne managed three first place finishes and three seconds in the 19-race series.

BVI sailor Sam Childs followed Rayne in sixth place.

There were 29 sailors in the Green Fleet.

Prior to the Scotiabank Regatta the three BVI sailors were joined by Curacao sailor Odile Van Aanholt and finished third in the Sea Star Team Racing championships, which were held the day before the Scotiabank event.  

The BVI team sailed exceptionally well in the morning winning all their heats to advance to the final round.

In the end, a mistake cost them a trip to the finals but they handily beat Team Knarly USA to take third overall.

“We sailed very well in the team racing,” said Mollee.  “Sam and I train team racing all the time, so it was great to put our efforts to work and almost make the finals.”

Sam and Mollee train with the Virgin Islands Optimist Dinghy Team in St. Thomas.  Mollee’s next regatta is the North American Championships in Los Angeles.  Sam is bound for the pre-World Championships in the Dominican Republic on July 8.