This year will be the 25th Anniversary of the Bitter End Yacht Club Pro Am Regatta, to be held October 30th to November 5th on Virgin Gorda in the British Virgin Islands. Picture yourself teamed with Serena Williams or Roger Federer in the doubles final at the U.S. Open. Few, if any, sporting events in the world offer the fan an opportunity to participate at such lofty levels. But for the 25th year, the Pro Am is opening the door to participating amateurs and first time sailors to compete side by side with America's Cup skippers, Olympic Medalists, and World Champions.
For long time Pro Am enthusiasts, Ed Baird will be the headlining professional. He was at the very first Pro Am (finished 3rd--Scott MacLeod won, Morgan Reeser was 2nd), and is the event's most successful skipper with six wins in 24 years. In addition to welcoming back Baird, confirmed skippers are Dave Ullman, Peter Holmberg, Olympians Anna Tunnicliffe and Zach Railey, and America's Cup skippers Paul Cayard and Russell Coutts (and more to be announced soon).
Very few regattas can claim to have that kind of talent attending over the years, much less offering "mere mortals" the opportunity to sail with them. After Baird's six wins, Peter Holmberg and Keith Musto each have four wins, and Paul Cayard, Ken Read, and Russell Coutts each have three.
One time winners and podium finishers include John Bertrand (AUS), John Bertrand (USA), Tom Blackaller, Jim Brady, Andy Burdick, Harold Cudmore, J.J. Feter, Glen Foster, Robbie Haines, Ted Hood, Terry Hutchinson, Peter Isler, Rod Johnstone, Bruce Kirby, Larry Klein, John Kostecki, Chris Larson, Morgan Larson, Tom Leweck, Paula Lewin, Cam Lewis, Lowell North, Zach Railey, Dawn Riley, Dave Ullman, and Butch Ulmer.
This week's video is from the 2010 edition... enjoy: