Wobbly Race Raises Fun and Funds

Published on February 8th, 2017

The annual Wobbly Race fund-raiser raised EC $17,000 (US $6,300) for Antigua Barbuda Search and Rescue (ABSAR). Held in Antigua, West Indies on February 3, 2017, Newport Shipyard (Newport, RI) has been sponsoring the Wobbly Race for five years and sends a team every winter to help organize and host the popular event among super yacht captains and crew.

Ten teams entered this year’s annual Wobbly Race, which features a ‘Build Your Own Boat (BYOB)’ format, where yacht captains and crew build a ‘boat’ using two sheets of plywood and other supplies. Along with Newport Shipyard employees, volunteers from ABSAR and staff members from Catamaran Club Marina and Cambusa Italian Restaurant were on hand all day selling t-shirts, raffle tickets, food, beverages and supporting the teams. The Association of Yacht Support Services (AYSS) also sponsored the regatta.

“Our 2017 theme was ‘Rock Star’ which meant the teams were asked to dress up as their favorite rock stars and decorate their boats accordingly,” said Eli Dana, Newport Shipyard’s general manager, who helps run the event. “We love supporting and hosting the Wobbly Club because all the money raised goes to an important and very worthy cause.”

Teams pay $100 to enter into the race and $25 for each sheet of plywood they need to build their boats. The event starts with a skipper’s meeting at 1:00pm at the Catamaran Club Marina and then the fleet has just under three hours to build their vessel (anything goes but no engines are allowed.) Boats are launched from the beach at the Cat Club and then they race around the docks to the other side of the marina. A veteran panel of judges is on hand to rank each team based on costumes, overall theme, and on-the-water performance.

Cambusa Italian Restaurant, which is located next to the Cat Club, donates food and beverages to the event and sells it to the spectator fleet for ABSAR. In addition to organizing the event, Newport Shipyard donates over $2000 in retail merchandise for prizes and raffle items and co-sponsors the Wobbly Race t-shirts with Chester Yacht Agency.

“The t-shirts this year were very well received by the fleet and spectators thanks to their ‘rock star’ design,“ said Jay Mulrooney, project manager at Newport Shipyard and Wobbly Race co-organizer. “A big thanks to Chester Yacht Agency who donates their time to design the shirts every year.”

Julie Harvey Esty, an ABSAR volunteer who lives with her husband and children in Antigua, reports that all the money raised helps ABSAR buy supplies and keep their equipment running and well maintained. “We strive to support super yacht captains, crew and their families while they’re in Antigua and we could not do it without donations and events like the Wobbly Race,” Esty concluded.

For more information and photos: http://www.newportshipyard.com/wobbly-club-2017

Background: Antigua and Barbuda Search and Rescue (ABSAR) is a voluntary organization dedicated to saving lives in Antigua and Barbuda and the surrounding waters. It is an officially recognized search and rescue service in Antigua and Barbuda where it provides 24 hour coverage, 365 days of the year. ABSAR works in close co-operation with the Antiguan Coast Guard, fire and ambulance services. More information: www.absar.org

Source: Veronica Brown, Newport Shipyard

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