WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NC (WWAY)– Fifty-five sailing crews from up and down the east coast traveled to Wrightsville Beach to compete in the Atlantic Coast Championship.
Carolina Yacht Club hosted the event which featured the Lighting class of sailboats.
“Sailing has enabled me to see most of the world. I’ve been to Europe a couple times and South America a couple times,” said William Brown.
The 18-foot long Lightning sailboat docked Brown and his teammates in the waters of Wrightsville Beach, which was a first in his colorful sailing career.
“Oh it was awesome. It was really fun. I just love the competition aspect of it,” said Brown.
Competitors say this is one of the biggest regattas of the summer for this class of boat. They say part of being successful is in this kind of contest is being able to handle the conditions out at sea.
“There are a lot of variables in the sport of sailboat racing so you always have to be on your game,” sailor Greg Fisher said.
One of the variables this weekend was the lack of wind.
“Earlier in the day it was light and really choppy,” said Fisher. “That makes it hard to keep the boats going fast. It was challenging for sure.”
It’s a challenge the sailors were eager to conquer.
“Being from New Jersey we don’t really sail on the ocean much. In the afternoon when the winds picked up it was a lot easier to get the boat moving through the chop, through the waves. It was very enjoyable,” said Timmy Crann.
Over the course of the two day event, sailors competed in four races. But at the end of the day, they say the competition stays in the water.
“All the comradery is what it is all about. It is all about families,” said Greg Fisher. “ All ages compete. It is just a wonderful to do life, we think.”
Scoring is based on whatever place the team earns in each race.
The crew with the lowest score at the end of the event wins bragging rights of the regatta.
Those rights went to Jody Stark and her crew who traveled down to Wrightsville Beach from Buffalo, New York.