Small Stuff New England April 2007

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Caffari, Miller named top British sailors

British circumnavigating sailor Dee Caffari won the title of Raymarine/YJA Yachtsman of the Year — making it a double for the ladies, following Katie Miller taking the title of Raymarine Young Sailor of the Year.

Caffari was presented with the award, Raymarine/YJA Yachtsman of the Year, for the world record she set as the first woman to sail single-handed, non-stop around the world against prevailing winds and currents. Having fulfilled her desire to be involved in round-the-world yacht racing by skippering a yacht in the Global Challenge, she set sail on a more personal voyage, the Aviva Challenge — her 178-day solo circumnavigation. Departing in November 2005, Dee returned a hero to Southampton in May 2006.

Finalists for the title included 470 World Champions Nic Asher and Elliot Willis, the first British team to win the 470 World Championship since 1988; and Steve Curtis, who has won eight Class 1 World Championships and is considered the best international powerboat racer of all time.

Miller, who is studying Yacht Manufacture and Surveying at SouthamptonSolentUniversity, won the award for her single-handed circumnavigation of the United Kingdom in her boat Elektra. Her three-month voyage raised funds for The Ellen MacArthur Trust to enable children suffering with cancer to experience the thrills and beauty of sailing.

Community leaders named to youth board

Three local Florida community leaders have been added to the board of directors of the Treasure Coast Youth Sailing Foundation, a non-profit organization recently created to provide sailing lessons for area children. The new members are Fort Pierce Mayor Robert J. Benton III; St. Lucie County School Board member Rev. Troy Ingersoll; and executive director of the St. Lucie County Boys and Girls Club, Norman H. Penner, Jr.

Roy Whitehead, president of the TCYSF, announced the new members would bring a wealth of experience and organizational talents to the foundation to recruit students, particularly underprivileged children who might be eligible for sailing program scholarships.

Benton, Ingersoll and Penner will join Whitehead and three other members of the board: Candace Banack, Sharon Raphaeli and William Woollett.

TCYSF’s first season of sailing instruction is scheduled for June 4 through August 3.Two-week classes will be available to children 8 to 13. Instruction will be provided by a U.S. Sailing Association certified coach at JayceePark, on SouthHutchinsonIsland in the city of Fort Pierce. Students will sail prams, designed specifically for training.

The Treasure Coast Youth Sailing Foundation is sponsored by the Fort Pierce Yacht Club. www.tcysf.homestead.com

Nancy Erley elected to advisory board

The National Women’s Sailing Association elected Nancy Erley, founder and owner of Tethys Offshore Sailing for Women, in Seattle, to its advisory board.

Erley holds a 50-ton Master of Oceans and 100-ton Master Near Coastal license and is an instructor-evaluator for the International Sail and Power Association. For the past 24 years, Erley has been teaching women to sail, either on learning cruises or individually. She frequently participates in the Women’s Sailing Convention in California and the Women’s Sailing Conference in Massachusetts. She has been a featured speaker at a variety of events.

Erley, a two-time circumnavigator, was the 2006 recipient of the Leadership in Women’s Sailing Award, co-sponsored by BoatU.S. and NWSA. The award honors an individual who has built a record of achievement in inspiring, educating and enriching the lives of women through sailing.