With cooler weather now in the Northern Hemisphere, hearts and minds are turning towards winter warm water multihull racing in the Caribbean. At the Sint Maarten Yacht Club the fever for the fourth edition of the Caribbean Multihull Challenge in February 2022 is rising. A roster of favorite local multi’s is already registered for 2022 with indications of coming offshore participation from a group of custom, classic, and light weight Ocean and Cruising class catamarans and trimarans entering for racing on courses designed to challenge each. Race organizers are in contact with yachts heading – or planning to head – to the Caribbean from Europe and North America. With the Caribbean 600 firing up again in Antigua two weeks after the CMC, 2022 could be an entry record breaker.
In pre-Covid CMC 2020 racing the Ocean Racing Class Mod-70 trimarans Maserati and Argo and the 63’ tri Shockwave blasted their way around a special three island 60 nautical mile course in high winds with Argo winning that race setting a new course record. In the ether is the first Caribbean appearance of Aréte, Rick Warner’s Mod 60 Chicago to Mackinac 2021 speed record-setter. For 2022, race organizers have branded the Sint Maarten to St Bart’s to Anguilla Sound and back to Sint Maarten the brand new ‘Caribbean 60 Mile Multihull Sprint’. Set for the windiest of the three-days, the Sprint will have its own sponsors and prizes and of course the winner will have bragging rights for all of 2022.
In the Ocean Cruising class Finn, the Banuls 53’ trimaran dominated. Great work by Anthony McVeigh’s 2 2 Tango resulted in top finishing times along with Arawak, the 52’ Joubert-Nivelt custom catamaran. Sadly, the highly anticipated racing debut of the lightweight Marsaudon ORC50 Addictive Sailing had to be cancelled due to a pre-race dismasting on a practice course the day before the first start. So much of the racing excitement will be repeated in 2022, with La Novia, George Coutu’s new Leopard 50 back at it with Gold Sponsor The Moorings providing a catamaran for the CMC’s highly regarded Women’s Racing Team skippered by Stephane Ferron. Add in the legendary rivalry between Spellbound from Ian Martin and Seaduction skippered by CMC Chairman Petro Jonker and more heated competition is assured.
The CMC is so popular that an impressive sponsorship team led by Oris Swiss Watches, the Moorings, and the Yacht Club Port de Plaisance Marina is back for more as is Caribbean Multihull Yacht Brokerage sponsoring the photography of Laurens Morel of the Netherlands’ Salty Colours. For 2022, Oris will continue to provide a watch to the CMC winner, YCPDP will offer reduced rate dockage at their luxurious marina in Simpson Bay Lagoon; while Caribbean Multihull Brokerage will offer a photo contest and a chance for the winning photo to become lead photograph for the 2023 CMC V.
For 2022, all official onshore events will be held at the Sint Maarten Yacht Club where Covid-compliancy has been the rule since the onset of the pandemic. After a brief uptick in cases traced mostly to the Delta variant, the country’s health organizations are reporting a welcome downturn in infections which points to a nice roster of race entries for February 2022; therefore the welcome mat is out for visiting yachts, crews, and guests.