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Monday, January 30, 2023



Nov. 12, 2001 – The 15th Veuve Clicquot Women's Regatta that was to have been held Friday, Saturday and Sunday off St. Thomas has been postponed until January.
On Sunday evening, Philip H. Brady, commodore of the St. Thomas Yacht Club, which was to have hosted the event, issued a statement saying "I have today postponed" the regatta "until early January due to a lack of entrants at this time."
His statement also announced that Summer Westman and Louri Lynn Throgmorton, who had co-chaired the event scheduled for the coming week, "have scheduling conflicts that will prevent them from chairing the postponed event." He said Verian Aguillar will direct the rescheduled regatta.
Publicity for the planned event specified that racing was open to women 18 years of age and older, a requirement that had raised controversy within the yacht club. In his statement, Brady said that "the issue of an appropriate age limit will be raised again" at the Nov. 20 meeting of the yacht club's board of governors, "and I shall again strongly recommend to the board that the age limit be 15." He also said that a "revised Notice of Race and Sailing Instructions will be published shortly.
According to information confirmed as recently as Sunday morning, the weekend regatta was to have had more than 40 women participating, from St. Thomas, St. John, St. Croix, the British Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, Antigua, Sint Maarten and the U.S. mainland. The sailing competition, begun in 1986 as a one-day event and held annually except for 1995 in the aftermath of Hurricane Marilyn, has been sponsored for the last nine years by Veuve Clicquot-Ponsardin through its V.I. distributor, Bellows International.
Throgmorton had earlier described the regatta as "a shared weekend of sailing during which women can get together with one another, renew old friendships and create new ones." In addition to racing, the planned event was to have included pre-race seminars, on-the-water racing critiques and question-and-answer sessions led by Betsy Alison, a five-time Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year, former World Women's Laser Champion and currently highly ranked in the Women's Match Racing Circuit.
For this year, the directors of the planned event had added new racing classes in addition to Lasers: lateen-rigged sailboats such as Sunfish and Aqua Fins, and possibly Wayfarers. They also had announced that the event would be a fund-raiser for a local organization which provides services to women and families. The schedule had included dinners Friday and Saturday at the yacht club and a Sunday awards luncheon at the Ritz-Carlton St. Thomas Resort.

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