English Harbor, Antigua. The red light district!
08 April 2017
No, it's not what you think. Any sailboat with a mast over 100 feet high needs a red light at the top to warn low-flying aircraft. One night we counted 20 red lights in English Harbor and neighboring Falmouth Harbor. That's a lot of big sailboats in one place.
Pictured is Rainbow, one of the eight J class boats in the world. J boats were raced in the America's Cup from late 1920's until WWII. They were the largest and most majestic class to race for the America's Cup. Rainbow is a replica of the successful 1934 defender of the Cup. She was leaving port and I jumped in the dinghy to get a picture.
The Antigua Classic Regatta starts April 19th. Large and classic boats are in the area for this world class event. They have 50 boats entered. I don't think Rainbow is the largest boat either. There were two A class boats, modern creations of vintage schooners, at the dock in Nelson's Dockyard. Lisa and I call them A Scows but not to the crew!
One interested observation is that all of these boats (classic and just monster super-yachts) have British flags. British ensigns are quite confusing. They can be a field of red, white or blue. They all have the Union Jack in the corner and some have a crest or other symbol in the field. Still, all British. Someone said these boats are all registered in British territories as tax shelters. Don't know.
Rainbow has the three leg, Isle of Man symbol in the field. My moto friends will sure appreciate that.
We are going to stick around for Classics Week and hope to scam a ride on a classic boat. My batting average has been pretty good so far. We are still deciding whether or not to enter Uproar in Antigua Race Week. There are 150 boats registered already for the event.
If you look closely you can see Uproar just off Rainbow's bow. Look for the teal canvas. Don't look for a mast, it is down in Slipway Marina, we are replacing the rod rigging. Should be back up middle of next week.