You could feel the excitement in the air at this year’s Charleston Race Week. After a long break from regattas this past year, it is safe to say everyone was itching to get on the water. We followed sailor Lily Flack aboard a Melges 24 “Opportunity” throughout race week. Flack gives us a little inside view of what this year’s regatta was like for the sailors. 

“After a long year of no sailing, I was very excited to get back on the racecourse. Sailing has always been my happy place, especially in Charleston. My favorite event, Charleston Race Week, turned out to be a huge success this year, even after taking the past year off from races due to the pandemic. They say time flies when you are having fun, and man did this happen at the regatta. After three days of racing, my team and I ended up in 21st overall out of 33 boats. With the oldest sailor on our boat being just 18 years old, we were delighted with our performance. We were there for a good time… There were no pros on our boat, just a handful of die heart sailors, and let me tell you how good it felt to beat a few pro-boats. 

“The famous Charleston’s sea breeze usually doesn’t fill in till the afternoon. Luckily, a few of the days, we had “breeze on” conditions, hiking as hard as we could upwind and sending it downwind. Before the event, we spent a lot of time double-checking our hardware, rigging, and sails to prepare for these conditions. Barton Marine was accommodating in this process, supplying our team with new spinnaker, backstay, and traveler blocks. After reflecting on the many events I have done as a spinnaker trimmer, I can honestly say that I have never had a better experience and feel of the kite through the blocks. I would highly recommend Barton Marine hardware and look forward to choosing their equipment in the future. 

“Thank you to Charleston Race Week organizers and volunteers for running a great few days of racing,” said Flack. “Already planning for my fourth race week next April.”