Updated: May 15, 2019
"It's really for the love of the ocean, the love of sailing that's why we're here--and we want to share it with everyone. We wanted to be mainstream because for a long time sailing as an elitist sport but it's not. In fact, it can help the Philippines to really get out of poverty" - Zed Avecilla, Executive Director of the Subic Sailing Club
This was the introduction given to us when we got to the venue which is, to be honest, a strong and powerful one. Because even if the context of his last sentence is a bit bold, it actually has a deep truth to it.
Subic Sailing School is their program that aims to teach people especially the out of school youth to learn how to sail and also gives their families livelihood provisions by being boat boys.
"Ako'y Pilipino at nasa dugo ko ang pagiging marino"
This for me reverberates to the core of us being a maritime nation
yet the art of seafaring has been forgotten by many throughout time
Which is why education and even to participate in events like the Chairman's Cup Regatta (formerly known as Commodore's Cup Regatta) is very crucial into enlivening of our maritime roots. As we set course to another season of the Philippine Sailing Grand Prix, the rebranded Chairman’s Cup Regatta commemorates the leadership that is at the helm of the agency that has played a significant role in the development of the Subic Bay Freeport and the Special Economic Zone. This event is organized by the Subic Sailing Club headed by Mr. Jun Avecilla, Chairman of the organizing committee.
Subic Bay – an excellent harbour to its geographical location and serves as the premier yacht racing destination in the Philippines and is truly a sailing haven. Regular regattas are being held in Subic Bay not just to promote its tourism but to enhance yachtsman-ship for international competitions and foster camaraderie among sailors. It has become a playground for Grand Prix keelboats from various countries as they compete in the prestigious international regattas hosted here in our country.
The inaugural Chairman’s Cup Regatta took place on April 25-30, 2019, few days after the awarding of the first edition of the Hong Kong to Puerto Galera Yacht Race – a classic 650nm passage to Puerto Galera that ended on April 21, Easter Sunday.
The Chairman’s Cup Regatta envisioned to breed the next generation of sailors that will give pride and honor to our country and will continue our legacy as a maritime nation. “We hope that this event will not only produce a new generation of Filipino sailors but also give honor to our rich maritime heritage,” said Zed Avecilla, Executive Director of the Subic Sailing Club.
Sailing, whether a sport or a recreational activity builds character as the skills acquired go far beyond of controlling a boat that can be applied in real life. It enhances creativity, confidence, teamwork, communication, determination, independence and performance are some of the specific character attributes nurtured through sailing.
The highlight of the Chairman’s Cup Regatta (CCR) is the FarEast 28R One-Design Race with eight boats in the division. Other Keel Boat divisions will include IRC Class 1, IRC Class 2 and Cruising Class. There will also be a Dinghy Division composed of the Optimist Class, Streaker Class and the Oz Gooze Class which took place on April 25-26, 2019. To cap off the event, there were local and international DJs together with one of the top leading bands in the country who played during the M1 Freedom Party.
This 5-day event attracted thousands of Filipino sailors and non-sailors to the most exciting and competitive world of yacht racing in the country with among the top-notch sailors around the globe. It also aims to encourage the general public to know more information about the sport as well as Philippine’s maritime industry and hopefully encourage more people to explore our maritime roots.